I recently attended the Microsoft Dynamics Fall Analyst Event (FAE) 2012 in Washington state, which started with a tour of a local Microsoft Store (see Part 1 of this blog series, Microsoft Analyst Event Part One: What’s New for Fall 2012). At the company’s Redmond, WA Microsoft headquarters, Kirill Tatarinov, President of the Microsoft Business Solutions Division (MBS), gave us the 2012 year-end review. One major point that he made was that he and the entire MBS department have been promoted into a full-fledged Microsoft division (no longer folded together with SharePoint and Office), and that the division has been recruiting new executives and rank-and-file employees. I take this as a sign of the company’s serious investment in Microsoft Dynamics.
Microsoft has acquired the marketing automation software company MarketingPilot. According to the press release, the new acquisition will be integrated into the Microsoft Dynamics CRM suite. MarketingPilot specialized in software that addresses marketing management demands ranging from insight into customer needs to automation of multi-channel marketing campaigns. MarketingPilot appears to provide strong analytics capabilities that can reveal the return on marketing investment for each campaign. This appears to be the key motivation for the acquisition. As more and more customer relationship management (CRM) products are aspiring to become social and benefit from these new channels of communication, Microsoft is hoping to assess the effectiveness of each campaign as well as its medium of delivery.