Free CRM? You're kidding, right?
Two brothers based in Wellington are founders of an animation company located near Courtenay Place (”where stuff happens”). In setting up and managing their own customers, contractors, and competitors for their studio, they discovered first-hand how difficult it is to find a Customer Relationship Manger (CRM) that handles the complicated relationships often found in the fluid environment in which the entertainment industry is embedded — one media company may own shares in another media company whose directors and wives own shares in a holding company that owns shares in a company that owns the majority of the media company you’re partnering with. Knowledge of these sometimes opaque relationships can be important when bidding for work or negotiating a contract.
So the brothers, having both technical and design backgrounds, created their own cloud-based application to handle the most complicated relationship imaginable.
The result is Elephant CRM.
From the site, GetElephant.com, you can sign up (free during beta with a future discount for those who participate). You can visit their Sandbox page where 5 model CRMs allow you to stick your fingers in the dirt. The 5 sandboxes represent a media shop; a roster of freelancers; scene, plot, and character management for a movie script; operations management of a performing arts complex; and service and asset management. Pick a Sandbox close to your needs — they’re all there at your disposal. You can modify these sandboxes as you like, thus seeing for yourself how various features work. Each “Company” is re-set to its original values at roughly midnight (Wellington time) each night.