CRM · Email Marketing

Recommendations for a *simple* CRM system

Rahul Singh Founder & CEO at Distelli

April 19th, 2013


I just launched my startup in private beta and have a small number of early signups. I'm looking for a *simple* CRM that has the following features:

  1. Maintain a list of the people in the pipeline along with the stage they're at (eg: pitched, signedup, trial, active user etc)
  2. Send email to the entire list or to select people on the list. Ideally the email should be addressed by their name 
  3. Track when was the last time I contacted them
  4. Track how many emails have been sent to each person
  5. Track the current state of the customer
Most importantly, I need something simple without too much complexity! I've tried mailchimp and it doesn't do what I need.

Any recommendations are welcome! I really don't want to use an excel spreadsheet!


Charles Oppenheimer

April 19th, 2013

I've got a good recommendation here: Try it! Basically exactly what you described.   I do consulting, so that is an unbiased recommendation.  Although I do know the founders, great guys.

Another one I really like the looks of but haven't used is:


Jesal Gadhia

April 19th, 2013

You can checkout

Matt Moore Co-Founder & iCEO at CrowdMob Inc.

April 19th, 2013

Try to get into the relateiq beta -- you won't be sorry! Best, Matt -- (650) 888-5962

Aurelie Otto

April 19th, 2013

I also tried MailChimp as well, but I opted for Campaign monitor. It's easier to use and has a lot of different functionalities. Best, Lilie


Justin Williams Digital Marketer and Data Analyst

April 19th, 2013

MailChimp is an email service provider, not a crm system, so no surprise there. I swear by CapsuleCRM. It's simple but has pipeline and integration with MailChimp for the mail pieces. However, you may want to be more specific on "select people" you want to send to. Getting everyone who lives in CA is pretty easy, getting everyone who clicked one of the last three things you sent them is more difficult, and not something most simple crms will provide. Other things to think about: How many contacts, companies, and opportunities will you have at one time? Are you a B2B business or B2C? If your B2C, a crm is probably not what you want. Stay away from SalesForce. It's too complicated. Try out several CRMs before settling Be extremely strict about how data is collected and entered. Establish standards and follow them.


April 19th, 2013

I appreciate this thread and am following it closely - my team and I have had the same issues.  My COO had us on, and that didn't really work on the iPad (more of a big deal for me), but it may be worthwhile to reconsider.  We use Asana's "light CRM" functionality, but we don't do anything like what you're asking for yet.  We're looking at now for when we actually release, and I've heard good things about that one, but I am not the resident expert on this.

Derek Dukes Business Development, Startups at Amazon Web Services

April 19th, 2013

Check out Mixpanel's People product. It isn't a traditional crm but will do emails on event triggers and some of the other things. Not sure about the mass mailings. - d

Elijah McClendon Founder/Developer Technologic West

April 19th, 2013

I use Base CRM.  It is really simple to use and has all the basic needs you describe.  The first month was free and its been $15/month since.  I'm not an expert on CRMs, but I tried Salesforce and Sugar.  Base was the most basic.  That is just my 2 cents.  

Rahul Singh Founder & CEO at Distelli

April 19th, 2013

Wow! This is the first time I've posted a question here and the response is awesome! Thanks for all the quick replies.

PipeDrive does *exactly* what I need (so far). Not sure it has email marketing features - Create templates / snippets, and email them to select users. 

Richard Rosen Founder of FastCall --​> #1 Phone Sales Productivity app in the Salesforce AppExchange

April 20th, 2013

I do not agree that Salesforce is too complicated. There is an amazing ecosystem of apps and resources. If you are building a B2B sales org, dont skip Salesforce.