Out with the old, in with the new. Microsoft Dynamics Marketing is making way for a new Dynamics 365 Business Edition marketing app next spring.
Microsoft shook up its own customer relationship management (CRM) and enterprise resource planning (ERP) product line this summer when it unveiled its cloud-only Dynamics 365 business application platform. Integrated with Office 365 and imbued with the company's analytics and artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities, Dynamics 365 allows organizations to piece together an app environment tailored to their business processes and workflows.
Just days before the Nov. 1 release of Dynamics 365, Microsoft announced that it is readying a marketing app for the platform.
"The new Marketing application will include features and benefits that Dynamics Marketing customers will find very appealing including functionality to model and manage customer journeys across marketing and sales, lead management across marketing and sales, and sharing the same Dynamics 365 platform as the Sales app," wrote the Microsoft Dynamics Marketing team in an Oct. 24 blog post. "Additionally, the Marketing app in the spring 2017 release of Dynamics 365 for Marketing will include email marketing, event management, landing pages, and lead management."
Meanwhile, Microsoft is halting sales of the existing Dynamics Marketing app on Nov. 1. The company pledged to honor its support commitments to current customers until Oct. 31, 2020, and recommended that customers looking to make the switch test the new Dynamics 365 Marketing app when it arrives next spring and plan the transition over the subsequent six to twelve months.
Customers can use that time to get accustomed to the new common data model used by Dynamics 365 that enables developers to extend the platform and organizations to create custom business applications without writing code. The common data model also works with Flow, Microsoft's IFTTT-like workflow automation service.
Naturally, the competition isn't standing still.
Last month, in a bid to "democratize AI," Salesforce announced it was adding its AI capabilities across its CRM applications as upcoming updates. The company's AI technologies, dubbed Salesforce Einstein, analyzes customer records and interactions to help recommend next steps, automate tasks and predict likely outcomes.
"Powered by advanced machine learning, deep learning, predictive analytics, natural language processing and smart data discovery, Einstein's models will be automatically customized for every single customer, and it will learn, self-tune, and get smarter with every interaction and additional piece of data," Jim Sinai, vice president of marketing at Salesforce Einstein, said in a Sept. 19 announcement. "Most importantly, Einstein's intelligence will be embedded within the context of business, automatically discovering relevant insights, predicting future behavior, proactively recommending best next actions and even automating tasks."
Einstein's effects will be felt across the Salesforce ecosystem, including Sales Cloud, Service Cloud Einstein, Marketing and Analytics Cloud, Community Cloud Einstein, IoT Cloud and App Cloud Einstein, the company said.