Links 6/24: Why Comcast is buying Icontrol; Synchronoss expanding in Bethlehem, moving local engineers to New Jersey

Proscape Technologies' mobile marketing app seeks market

Tom Paine

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I wrote about Horsham-based Proscape Technologies back in the Fall of last year. Its legacy business, which still exists, is closed-loop CRM systems for pharmaceutical salesforces.

In fact, Proscape pretty much popularized the concept of closed loop marketing in Pharma. "Closed loop marketing (CLM) is the process by which a pharmaceutical company develops marketing strategies and deploys them through one or more channels to reach their customers (the prescribers) and gain a sound understanding of what happens in the marketplace", according to PharmaGuy's (John Mack) Pharma Marketing Glossary.

In direct and web-based marketing one usually has a definite & immediately measurable closed loop in terms of sales results. But in pharma sales, results are often ambiguous and difficult to measure over time. Closed loop systems seek to measure what happens from a combination of factors to have a better understanding of causality, and the concept lives on in Pharma CRM today.

But for whatever reason, Proscape reached a point where it didn't see a future in the CRM market, perhaps due to the growing dominance of Veeva Systems and IMS Health(ex-Cegedim) and decided to focus its future efforts elsewhere. So it chose a niche that it knew well, the sales (or marketing) presentation, and the tools used in that process. And in the form of a new venture supported by new capital, it created the Marketing App Cloud.

Its a code free, mobile content management system for developing and managing field presentations. Proscape designed it to be used by marketing communications or ad agencies, customers it knew best from its pharma marketing experience (though Marketing App Cloud is not only for Pharma), and the creative origin of many sales presentations. And those agency people aren't coders, or may have minimal coding assistance available. The apps can run in iOS, Android or Windows Mobile. See a
demo here . List prices range from $10 to $45 per user per month.

I spoke with of Joe Edelman of PulseCX,a leading interactive healthcare marketing agency based in Montgomeryville, Pa. He uses Proscape's Marketing App Cloud to prepare presentations, and rates it highly on flexibility and ease of` use. Edelman finds it of particular value in developing presentations for medium-sized clients. The larger clients buying Veeva CRM can afford extensive customization, but smaller accounts can get the customization they need from the Marketing App Cloud.

Proscape would make the point that even large accounts would benefit by using Marketing App Cloud in terms of faster time to deployment.

In its CRM business, Proscape customized Microsoft Dynamics to its customers' needs. Now it no longer is actively involved in CRM implementation, and Salesforce is the CRM it sees its customers using most often. But there are data driven fields in Marketing App Cloud which can be tied in to whatever CRM the customer uses. There are also parameters to specify things such as who in the salesforce sees what version of a presentation.

There is a conundrum here, however. Proscape still has a larger number of employees working on supporting its legacy CRM customers, I believe, and the mobile app is still getting off the ground. Proscape designed the mobile business to be as self-servicing as possible in terms of sales, design, processing and support. But often things don't work that way. I see some evidence in Proscape's current job postings that its adding the type of support staff it needs.

They've been doing some good market development work, and have created excellent storytelling marketing content. But Proscape needs stronger ties to the technology community, a better way of describing and positioning the product, and perhaps a more strategic sales process.

I've been through transitioning a business from old tech to new tech before, and it can be challenging even if the technology is excellent.