3 thoughts on “Tip #1118: Ways To Link Accounts and Contacts

  1. I agree that this is a tricky area but I would just like to add that connections would be great choice if only they were a bit more configurable. A present I find they mostly confuse users if used directly. There are exceptions with the specially created subgrids in Opportunity and Lead for Stakeholder and Sales team which are a usability front for connections. The problem with connections, is that there is no way (that I know of anyway) to limit to which entities connections are allowed to. Let’s say you are on MD House and want to connect it to the account “John Hopkins Hospital”, In The lookup you will first have to select which entity to connect to, and for a user of limited skills of data abstraction this might become weird. “Connect MD House to an Invoice? Order? Goal? Which was it? What does this mean?

    So from that perspective I would recommend the manual N:N approach which with quick create does not become too clunky, and with custom control framework and editable grids and perhaps Canvas Driven Apps can be really beautiful.

    My 0.02 Surströmming.

  2. Leon Tribe says:

    You can limit which entities are used for a given Connection Role. It is part of the configuration. There is also my Better Way to Use Connections suggestion which can help.

    With the new features of the custom control framework, it may be possible to overcome the major drawback of ‘too many clicks’ with the manual N:N which would make it compelling.

  3. Roland says:

    Are you aware of a marketing solution (eg. ClickDimensions) that can work with any of the options in this post, particularly being able to get information from multiple associated accounts for use in ‘personalized communications’?

    None of the marketing solutions I’ve found appear to offer the ability to let e-mailings be sent to duplicate e-mail addresses, but we must be able to e-mail a contact about all accounts he/she is registered for. Asking these contacts to create unique addresses for each of their accounts in our system is a no-go.

    Without getting into details: right now pay a not-so-insignificant monthly fee for ClickDimensions *and* have to use a different third-party e-mail provider to e-mail our contacts about each account they’re related to.

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