What is SendinBlue CRM worth? What features are offered? What is the level of functional depth compared to 100% CRM solutions? Is it suitable for my needs? What does the interface look like? How much does SendinBlue CRM cost? These are the questions we will answer and a few others.
Find out everything you need to know and everything you can do with this new module.
Like any company, SendinBlue has a history. And in this case, a beautiful story. The eponymous SaaS platform has been enriched with new modules and new functionalities over time. Initially (in 2012), SendinBlue was indeed focused on the management of email campaigns and newsletters. The following year, the platform launched a marketing & transactional SMS sending service. In 2015, it was the marketing automation module’s turn to see the light of day. Incidentally, the SendinBlue marketing automation application acquired a remarkable level of maturity.
Campaign manager (email then sms), SendinBlue has gradually transformed into a SaaS relationship marketing solution.
And we come to the heart of our subject. Since 2019, SendinBlue has offered a CRM module. This is what we’re going to talk about in a moment. But first, a few words on the difference between marketing automation and CRM.
What is marketing automation?
Marketing automation, as its name suggests, refers to the set of techniques (and underlying technologies) used to automate certain marketing tasks and processes. An example ? The creation of workflows to manage the automatic sending of messages or message sequences based on actions performed on the client side. For example, I abandon an ecommerce basket, I automatically receive a follow-up email three hours later. If I do not respond, I receive a second email to D + 2 offering products similar to those abandoned in the basket. In a scenario of this kind, the sending of the message N + 1 is always determined by the behavior of the contact with respect to email N.
An AD scenario is presented in the form of a decision tree. Here is an extract of a scenario produced with the SendinBlue platform:
Basket abandonment is often used as an example of a marketing automation scenario, but it’s far from the only one. Examples of classic marketing automation scenarios include the welcome scenario, the anniversary scenario, the recovery scenario for customers who are inactive or at risk of attrition, the recommendation scenario for additional products, the resubscription scenario, etc. . We could continue the list long enough.
Marketing automation is essentially a tool for marketers. It is used to automate communication with prospects, leads or contacts in general. It performs functions which are not those of CRM.
The difference between marketing automation and CRM
A CRM is a platform that allows you to manage all customer interactions and store all customer data.
There are two structural differences between CRM and marketing automation:
- CRM is centered on customer management, as its name suggests, unlike marketing automation which is centered on contact management (customers or not). We’ll see in a moment that SendinBlue CRM has a fairly broad view of what a “customer” is.
- CRM manages the relationship at an individual level unlike marketing automation which manages it at the level of contact segments. In marketing automation, messages are preconceived and are personalized only by certain variables of the type: name, first name, age, gender, status, preferences…
- The CRM plays a role of database. It stores all the data and exchanges on your customers.
SendinBlue has produced a very interesting diagram (even if it is B2B oriented) to understand at a glance the main differences that distinguish the two approaches.
We can now present the main characteristics of the CRM solution offered by SendinBlue.
First of all, note that SendinBlue CRM is not a separate solution but a new module integrated into the platform. And, good news, the CRM module is integrated into all subscription plans. Including the free formula.
The CRM is accessible from the menu of your SendinBlue account:
Let’s say it straight away: SendinBlue offers basic CRM. It is not necessarily a criticism. There’s no point in having a complex CRM when you’re just looking to organize the individual management of your clients and contacts in a more structured way. Who says basic also says simple and easy to use. We really liked the design of the interface and its ergonomics. It only takes a few seconds to understand how the module works.
SendinBlue CRM basically offers two functions: a contact manager and a task manager. These are the two basic building blocks of any CRM.
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Managing CRM contacts in SendinBlue
SendinBlue CRM lets you organize all your contacts into lists. You can for example organize your lists based on the stages of funnel marketing by creating a “Leads” list, a “Customers” list, a “Inactive customers” list, etc. Or create a list by contact channel. Up to you !
Note in passing that SendinBlue’s CRM is not necessarily focused on managing the company’s “customers”. SendinBlue’s CRM is more a tool for Contact Relationship Management as a Customer Relationship Management. It’s related to the very marketing culture of SendinBlue.
The screenshot above shows the contact management tool of the SendinBlue CRM. A search bar allows you to easily find the contact you are looking for. You can add as many attributes as you want to your table.
You can import your contact lists into SendinBlue CRM in just a few clicks. You have three options:
- Import your SendinBlue lists (ie. Contacts that are already loaded on the platform but not integrated into the CRM module).
- Import a file. SendinBlue CRM supports .txt and .csv formats, but not .xls.
- Make a copy and paste.
By clicking on a contact’s email, you land on their card. This contains all the information you have about him, that is, all of his attributes. From the contact sheet you can also:
- Take notes via a text editor integrated for this purpose.
- Create tasks: schedule a call, a lunch, an email, a task to do, a meeting.
- Import files: meeting minutes, quotes, mail, etc. You can attach any document: all formats are accepted.
Task management in SendinBlue CRM
Here is what the task management interface looks like:
The user can display only the tasks assigned to him. This task manager is simple to use and practical. To create a task, you can click “Create a task” at the top of the “Tasks” page or do it directly from the contact card (see the penultimate screenshot).
Each user can set up notifications if they wish.
We have more or less taken a tour of the possibilities offered by the CRM module edited by SendinBlue. As you can see, we are dealing with a CRM focused on the basic functionalities associated with this type of tool. It’s a safe bet that the module is getting richer over the months and years, but if you have complex CRM needs or are a large company, SendinBlue CRM is not for you.
It is not possible to organize your contacts around accounts. In some cases, in B2B, it is essential. On the other hand, if you just want to better organize the management of your customers and tasks, SendinBlue CRM may be of interest to you. Finally, note that you can test the module for free if you wish by creating a free account.