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Integrating with Email

Carom is launching soon.
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For most companies, email is (for better or worse) at the heart of nearly everything you do—scheduling meetings, talking with clients, sharing documents, and so on.

CRM applications needs to walk a fine line—recognizing that email is central to so many things, so nobody will abandon it in favor of another system, but at the same time reducing the reliance on email that means that information is so often lost in the depths of an inbox.

Our goal with Carom’s email integration is to listen without being in the way. You can keep working over email and we won’t interrupt—but when you want to remember a customer interaction or keep track of a task you have to do, Carom will be there to help: just forward an email to your personal Carom dropbox or BCC it during your conversations.

Building a “smart dropbox”

Carom provides every user a unique dropbox email address that looks something like this:

widgetco.ae892f89afd32@dropbox.carom.io

Where widgetco is their Carom account subdomain and the random 12-character string that follows is their mailbox’s unique identifier. We use the unique identifier to map emails we receive to the accounts and users they belong to.

Carom is smart about how it handles the emails it receives.

First of all, we’ve done a lot of work to parse emails intelligently. We’ll automatically split apart past replies and show your whole conversation in an easy-to-read format.

Secondly, if you forward an email into Carom, we’ll separate the message you forward to us from the conversation you were having with a customer. That way you can send Carom a note about why you’re forwarding the email or what you need to do next, without your note getting in the way of reading the conversation you’ve had.

Here’s an example of what that looks like:

Automating follow-up with filters

There’s more to email than receiving, parsing, and storing it. Sometimes you want a record of a conversation for future reference, but often you have a next step in mind: create a task, generate a lead, create a meeting.

Carom’s smart filters allow you to do all of this without leaving your email client. Just append a filter to your dropbox email address to tell us how to handle the email you’re sending. For example, send an email to:

widgetco.ae892f89afd32+task@dropbox.carom.io

Carom will create a task for you, using the subject of your email or a note you forward along with the email thread.

Some filters also allow you to pass some additional options. For example, to create a task due today, you would email:

widgetco.ae892f89afd32+task.today@dropbox.carom.io

As you’d imagine, a task due tomorrow would include the filter task.tomorrow; a task due on May 24 would include task.2014.05.24.

To generate a new lead from a task, just do this:

widgetco.ae892f89afd32+lead.new@dropbox.carom.io

We’ll write more about this—including a full list of filters and how they work—when we get closer to launch. But this should give you an idea of how Carom plays well with email, and how you can use our system to supplement your existing email workflow without disrupting the way you work.