ToutApp, a provider of software-as-a-service (SaaS) applications used by salespeople to more effectively engaged customers, has published an open API.
Based on a REST API, the Tout Connect API is designed to make it simpler to integrate ToutApp’s applications with a wide variety of other applications, CEO Tawheed (TK) Kader says. ToutApp already provides integration with customer relationship management (CRM) software from Salesforce.com and email systems from Microsoft and Google. The Tout Connect API will make it simpler for organizations to, for example, integrate ToutApp with not only other CRM applications and email systems, but also sales lead intelligence services that provide salespeople with access to potential new customers, says Kader.
In general, salespeople use email to communicate with customers, Kader notes. ToutApp adds a series of templates to help salespeople not only send the optimal type of message based on what they want the customers to do, but also analytics that allows them to keep track of who opened a message and then acted on it. ToutApp also enables salespeople to pull in social media data about potential customers to enable them to better personalize the messages being sent to a specific customer.
Kader says ToutApp is designed to meet the needs of salespeople. In contrast, CRM applications have evolved into a system-of-record application used primarily by managers to track sales team performance.
ToutApp says several organizations have already committed to using its API, including Bluenose, KiteDesk, Lead411, Preact and Spiderbook. While the API is open, Kader says ToutApp has attached opt-in conditions to how the API can be used, given the sensitive nature of the data that salespeople tend to store in ToutApp.
In the wake of CRM applications gaining popularity in the last two years, a host of applications aimed directly at individual salespeople has spawned a new multibillion-dollar category of software. As this category of software continues to mature, the number of APIs that are being exposed to developers has started to multiply. Developers are making use of the APIs to integrate these applications, generally known as systems of engagement, with any number of back-end systems, such as CRM and general ledger applications, that serve as systems of record for most organizations.
It remains to be seen which of these applications will ultimately dominate the category. But in the meantime, demand for developer integration expertise across the sales management category is exploding.