So believe it or not a ton of questions this week have been about conversions from ACT! for me. Specifically how to convert from ACT! to Microsoft CRM.
Converting from ACT! to Microsoft CRM is a pretty easy task, with two items a bit more complicated. (ACT! Groups and Documents.) For today’s conversation and most of what I get hit with every day has been around ACT! groups.
The grouping feature is touted as a way to organize contacts to reflect the structure of an organization. In reality, people use if for all sorts of things. I have a client using it to track all of their customers that went to each class they ever offered, another one using it to track people who they send holiday cards, etc. And they want all of that data to be available to them in Microsoft CRM.
The rub comes in that there is no programmatic way that I am aware of to get access to the ACT! groups. So in talking to Joe Basile and Jack Bender from ePartners, they have an interesting work around that works pretty well.
What you have to do is first create a new custom field on the ACT! record for the each of the ACT! groups that you have. (Unless you have a large number of groups, then you create one field and import the groups one at a time into Microsoft CRM.) Next, using the global replace functionality in ACT!, you would filter on a group and change that specific group value for that record to a Yes. When you import the record into Microsoft CRM, just make sure that you create custom fields for the ACT! group fields and that you import those values into Microsoft CRM. Once the import is completed, just build a dynamic view in Microsoft CRM based on the appropriate ACT! group values or you could use marketing lists for static groups.