Marketing agency optimizes operations and revenue with AppConnect

Elevation Ten Thousand

How does an award-winning digital marketing agency continue to grow and meet the demands of clients? That’s what the team at Elevation Ten Thousand faces each day. Blyden Nartey is the master behind the marketing and sales operations at the agency and he counts on the Insightly platform to keep projects moving.

Integrations for time tracking, project management and accounting

During this webinar, Blyden and Insightly team member Luke Wade talk through optimizations that Blyden and his team have set up using AppConnect, the low-code/no-code integration tool that is part of the Insightly platform.

Blyden and Luke talk through the problem areas and pain points the agency had, and how Insightly CRM + AppConnect addresses them. Blyden and team have set up an AppConnect recipe for Harvest, a time tracking application used by the agency to accurately bill hours to clients. The team at Elevation Ten Thousand also uses Asana for project management, and has an AppConnect recipe built to have it communicate with the CRM. The team uses QuickBooks Online to manage their agency finances, and Blyden and team have a recipe in place there as well for billing.

Watch this webinar for the details in how these recipes were conceived, built, and how they make the agency more efficient and profitable.

Clip: Time tracking perfected for marketing agency

Blyden explains the pain points that led him to explore an AppConnect integration with Asana and Harvest for project management and time tracking. Luke then shows how the recipes are built and how they work with QuickBooks Online for billing.

Transcript: Integrating Insightly CRM with Harvest, Asana, and QuickBooks Online

Melinda: Hey everybody thank you so much for taking the time to join us today we’re going to be talking about AppConnect use cases across three applications we’ve got Harvest which is cloud-based time tracking software Asana which is a Work Management platform designed to help teams organize track and manage their work and QuickBooks Online which is one of the most popular small business accounting software packages that’s used to manage income and expenses and keep track of your business’s Financial Health so let’s get it started let’s start with introductions I am Melinda Prescher and I’m hosting today’s event I work out of the San Jose California area I’ve been Insightly over three years and I’ve led marketing teams for over 15 years. 


On to our wonderful guests I’ve got two great guests actually here with us to speak to their unique perspectives Luke Wade is an incredibly valuable member of our Insightly team he’s a senior sales engineer who specializes in helping our buyers understand Insightly and understand how to use it to get the most value out of it he works really closely with our sales team to help them bring the best of Insightly to their customers.


He’s been at Insightly for over a year and has come from a strategy analyst background. I’ve also got Blyden Narty here with us. Blyden is a key player on one of our customer teams that customer is Elevation 10 000 and he works on improving the operational systems that elevation 10K needs to execute at the highest level for their clients Blyden has been directly involved with the AppConnect work that we’ll be discussing today so just a level set we’ve got three goals for today we want to feature a customer story and use cases with AppConnect Integrations and talk about why those Integrations are so important for our customer we also want to show you exactly what this looks like so Luke is going to be doing a live demo for you today to show how all of the pieces fit together and finally we’ll open the floor for questions about AppConnect at the end so let’s first level set and talk about what AppConnect is and what it does so 


AppConnect is our low code integration product that makes it possible for you to integrate Insightly with all of the applications that you use to run your business AppConnect uses a really simple drag and drop interface to create recipes that run those Integrations and because it’s low code even people who aren’t Engineers can use it. 


The intent is to make it easy to build those Integrations so that you can avoid long development cycles and Engineering prioritization cues and by connecting all of the applications that you use to run your business to Insightly you can make the data that you have about your customers and your prospects easier to interpret and take action on which is what Blyden will talk about today. So let’s get started with our customer interview Blyden it’s so great to have you here today really really happy to have you talk about this, so let’s start with your company please talk about elevation 10K.


Blyden: Sure well elevation 10 000 we’re a full service marketing and Media company able to cover really any aspect of our clients business from Paid in organic media websites commercials logos apparel we really aim to be a One-Stop shop for all of our clients and we excel in whatever we deliver them as a company we’ve come really far and had a lot of accomplishments along the way and I think that a lot of that comes from our quality of service our adapted to the needs of our clients in terms of getting their name out there and generating for them and we have fun while we do it it’s really something special that we got going on 


Melinda: Can you tell us a little bit about your customers?


Blyden:  Our customers it’s in a whole range of industries from Financial to Automotive to higher ed and Healthcare really our client base is really broadened a sense that we’ll we’ll take on the client that we can so solve their problem got it and speak to your role and tell the audience what what you do on on a daily basis right so my role essentially is that I help build the processes internally within the company I work with the directors in the leadership work efficiently in-house so that way when we’re bringing out our products and services to our client we’re able to get it done in the most efficient most optimal way possible.


Melinda:  Well that sounds great let’s actually get into this then let’s first talk about Harvest so so stage and tell the audience the reasons why you and the company wanted to integrate Harvest with Insightly?


Blyden: We really wanted to look for ways to visualize our utilization rates per employee and per Department we wanted to be able to track our time and our budgets for each department so that we could forecast more efficiently for future contracts and make sure that we’re giving the best service possible and ultimately we felt like having this visibility would help us to be able to create trigger points for hiring as we grew got it and what benefits did you see once you completed the integration the biggest thing is just alignment having everyone on the same page I think across the company if everyone’s able to see where the time is being spent our time tracking details are fed into Insightly from Harvest and directors and team members get time tracking reports where they’re able to review their time for that point in the month and be able to see okay am I am I over on this project am I under on this one let me make the adjustments so really accountability on all levels has been huge as far as the integration that’s great and have you refined this even further I mean I know a lot of companies we work with they start with an integration and then as they start to realize the benefit they end up optimizing talk about that right right so we we had it down on a a project level but really to to get data that we wanted to see we’re now working on refining our current system so that way we can track the time at a user level because we feel that if we can get that specific with the time and we we can really start to pinpoint okay where are our pain points as far as servicing our clients where do we need to make adjustments do we need to add more people to this department do we need to maybe refine this process in our project so tracking the time on a user level as opposed to project level we’re really starting to refine and get creative with how we use AppConnect excellent let’s transition actually now to Asana you know lots of companies use Asana to manage projects our marketing team actually does at Insightly it it works really great for us It’s a Wonderful tool to communicate share information and just keep everything flowing smoothly so talk about the reasons why elevation 10 000 wanted to integrate Asana within slightly yeah I mean visibility to project progress is really the most important thing having the data and Insightly helps us to see the entire project picture from start to finish from the Asana side we’re really looking for roadblocks in the process and what I like is that Insightly’s list views allow us to sort through that data a lot more cleanly and see okay this one Project’s taking a long time why is that why is this task overdue why is this taking longer than anticipated and the reason we want that integration and Insightly is because while our team is working through tasks in Asana or we’re doing project progress and Insightly we want our teams to be able to be able to work in both systems as seamlessly as possible with as little friction as possible and we want them to have a full picture right there so they don’t have to toggle between applications so we’ve set it up so where if they need to go back to us they’re reviewing projects Insightly and they need to go back to Asana quickly to work on a task for a project there’s a link in the Insightly project that will take them back to that task in Asana so they’re able to work back and forth in the systems excellent I mean it sounds like a lot of efficiency and Time Savings to have all of that in one place that’s absolutely fantastic let’s talk about QuickBooks online so I know actually you’re in the planning phases of a Qbo integration right right so currently our financial review processes it’s very manual it’s very Hands-On on the financial department so we really want to look to automate as much as that as possible so we can focus on reviewing the numbers and because it’s possible at times when things are very manual as you know like things can pull through the cracks or it takes longer than you know you want it to and we we’d like to get to a place where we can complete a project and have that trigger an invoice for the client or on whatever schedule we have that client on as far as billing and then the financial data is always associated with that project so we’re able to use that data in reports and dashboards to forecast future contracts and track the development of each department and we want to automate as much of the process as possible so we can really focus on reviewing the numbers and growing the business yeah I mean eliminating errors in that critical process is just so absolutely important so it’s exciting to see what you’re doing there since you’re so close to the AppConnect process in terms of you know really figuring out what your team needs and getting it executed I’d like to have you talk to the audience about what what is the planning process look like what steps do you go through right it’s pretty simple I mean we we ideate internally about what we want to see and Insightly how we want to connect with the others and then once we have that general idea I so much Insightly customer success manager we go through the ideas of what improvements we want to make to the system and then we decide whether it’s something we can do on ourselves by ourselves or if we need to bring in Professional Services or a technical account manager typically it’s been Professional Services that has helped us with all of our initial builds but as I’ve gotten more comfortable with the system I’ve been able to update some of the recipes as well start to work on building some of my own and as it when the PS team creates the recipes they walk me through the whole thing we test it to make sure it’s working we go through multiple iterations of it and the process works really smoothly they walk us through the whole process they’re very helpful along the way answering any questions we have along the way they’re very helpful so it’s really been valuable to have them in terms of our success that sounds great you know Blyden it’s really great to hear your story and hear how you all are using AppConnect to benefit your business and and make some of these automations work really well for your team and just want to thank you so much for your time of course always a pleasure so let’s go ahead actually now and bring Luke into the discussion so he can share a demo he’s actually going to share how Harvest Asana and Qbo work together so you can get a good sense of the possibilities so take it away Luke thanks Melinda and bleeding again we really appreciate your time today Blyden is absolutely one of our favorite customers so today we are going to take a look at a few examples that speak to how you can utilize Insightly’s AppConnect to make Insightly the central Hub of your business and specifically what we’re going to do is we are going to convert a one opportunity to a project in Insightly and we have some at connect recipes that are going to run in the background so first off corresponding projects are going to be created in both Asana and harvest that are linked back to our newly converted Insightly project and then we’re going to see how a task created in Asana as well as time tracking entries from Harvest can automatically be synced back with our Insightly project and tracked and Insightly and then we’re going to wrap things up by taking some time tracking entries that are associated with a project that we brought in from Harvest and we are going to generate a QuickBooks invoice from within Insightly using Insightly’s AppConnect so I would I’d like you to imagine that I am a marketing director at a lean mean marketing machine similar to elevation ten thousand and we just brought on a big new customer Warbucks Industries and you can see here that Roger Mills is my primary contact there we’re looking at a closed one opportunity for a hundred thousand dollars here for Warbucks Industries and the first thing I’m going to do is I am going to convert this opportunity to a new project and Insightly so from the actions menu at the top right I will go ahead and convert this to a project and we’ll say we won this because of project fit and definitely because of the hard work and long hours of my sales team so let’s go ahead and convert this to a project we see that we are now looking at this newly created project and Insightly we have inherited the name from the opportunity I could have changed that on the previous screen if I wanted to and we see that Roger Mills is still my primary contact here you also May notice that there is an integration section on my project layout here and like everything else in Insightly these fields these sections are very customizable but we have an integration section here that has a lot of information that is going to be filled out via integration through AppConnect over the next few minutes here so by creating this Insightly project I have automatically created a corresponding linked projects in both Asana as well as harvest and if I go ahead and refresh my screen here we can see that we now have project IDs as well as URLs for both of those newly created linked projects let’s start off in Asana so I am going to click on this URL here and that’s going to open up the corresponding project in Asana that’s linked back to my Insightly project and what we see here is the project is named Insightly Dash and then the project name from Insightly so Warbucks Industries Roger Mills currently this is an empty project there are no tasks associated with it so let’s go ahead and add one right now and I will create a new task in Asana we will call it on-site kickoff and we want to add this task to our newly created Asana project which is this Warbucks Industries Roger Mills project and we’ll give this a description say meeting to discuss action plan and then let’s also give this a task a due date so we’ll make it due a week from today next Thursday August 24th so I’ve added a due date I’ve given the task a name it is now assigned to this new project so I’ll go ahead and create that task and we see that the task appears right here in Asana if I go to my home page we can see that that task also appears right here so now let’s jump back into Insightly and let’s take a look at our Harvest project that was created in conjunction with that Asana project so I have the Harvest URL here I’m going to go ahead and open that up and what you’ll notice here is I’ve used the exact same naming convention so Insightly Dash and then the name of the Insightly project Warbucks Industries Roger Mills currently we have not tracked any time for this project of course so what I’d like to do now is add a few time tracking entries for this newly created Warbucks Industries project so I’m going to navigate to the time Tab and let’s say on Monday that my team did three and a half hours of website redesign so we’ll change this set we’ll keep it at marketing here and we’ll call this website redesign and I want to associate this with the new project and the new client that we just created Warbucks industry so I’m going to change that drop down there and save the entry and then let’s add one more time tracking entry here so let’s say that yesterday we had a meeting with the IT team so I’ll go ahead and add one more time tracking entry for this newly created Warbucks Industries project we’ll say that this was billed as project management we did six hours of collaboration with it team and I will go ahead and save that entry so we created these linked projects in Asana as well as harvest we added a new task in Asana and I’ve now added two time tracking entries for my Harvest project so if we go and take a look at my projects here in Harvest we can see that my new Warbucks Industries project now has six hours of project management and three and a half hours of marketing for a total of nine and a half hours so let’s jump back into Insightly and take a look at what happened here you may notice that there is a hours completed field here this is going to be populated it actually already has been populated by the Integrations that I have running in the background with AppConnect so if I go ahead and refresh this project once more oh and we’ll give this just a moment to run but what we’re going to see is that those the hours associated with this project will be added what we’ll also see is that my Asana test that I created has automatically been pulled into Insightly on the activity tab we can see that it is categorized as Asana and we’ve pulled in the name the description the due date which is a week from today and it’s of course related to our Warbucks Industries project let’s refresh this once more nope my apologies I didn’t kick that recipe off it runs by default in the background every five minutes and I accidentally kicked off the wrong recipe so apologies for that but I just kicked off the correct one so now if we go to the details Tab and I refresh here we can see that we have a running total of nine and a half hours completed for this Warbucks Industries project and if I now jump over to the related tab which presents me with all of the related linked information from other objects we can see that we have two new time tracking entries here we have six hours of project management as well as three and a half hours of marketing and we’ve also pulled in rates from Harvest so those are both billed at forty dollars an hour so here we have the subtotal for each line item if I open either of these up I just opened up my project management time tracking entry from Harvest we can see that we have brought in Harvest notes as well so this project management time tracking entry was for collaboration with the IT team and of course it’s linked to our Insightly project as well as the Warbucks Industries organization so if I take a quick look at this organization on the related tab here we will see that we have our new related project at the top here as well as all previous time tracking entries for this organization we have some invoices here for QuickBooks Online as well and that is the last piece of this demo that I want to walk through that I think is really going to bring things together here so let’s jump back to our project and you may notice that I have a QuickBooks Online hours invoice field here at the top as well as a QuickBooks Online amount invoiced both of these are blank because I have not created any QuickBooks Online invoices yet but let’s go ahead and create one right now and the integration that I have set up with AppConnect here is going to create a new invoice it’s going to pull in all of the relevant customer information about Roger Mills and Warbucks Industries for that invoice and then it’s also going to add line items for my time tracking entries associated with this project that we just added in Harvest so I have a custom button here at the top QuickBooks Online this integration could be kicked off in numerous other ways let’s say that I had a pipeline assigned to this project and we’ll go ahead and add one right here and we’ll say this is our onboarding pipeline I Could Kick this integration off by moving to a certain stage in the pipeline but the way that I have this set up is via custom button so when I click this Qbo button we can see that my record was successfully sent to the recipe which means that AppConnect is handling all of the hard work on the back end for me here and we will give that about 10 seconds or so to wrap up but what we’re going to see is we’re going to have data that appears here and here as well as at the top these are the same Fields so ours and voiced as well as amount invoiced and I’ll go ahead and refresh we see that indeed we have now invoiced for nine and a half hours for a total of three hundred and eighty dollars and on the related tab we have a new QuickBooks Online invoice record for the invoice that I just automatically created via AppConnect this invoice and Insightly is linked to the organization the converted opportunity the project as well as the contact we have the amount the status which of course this invoice is new however if this invoice is paid later on that status can automatically be updated and kick off additional workflows but I’m going to click on this URL here and let’s take a look in QuickBooks online at the invoice that we just created so we see here that we have created a new customer if Roger Mills did not already exist in my Quickbooks online system we have automatically pulled in the relevant geographic information for Warbucks Industries and Roger Mills the way I have this set up is the due date is 30 days from the invoice created date so 30 days from right now September 16th and if I scroll down here we can see that we’ve also pulled in line item information about these time tracking entries so we have two entries associated with this project which we created a few minutes ago six hours of project management at a rate of forty dollars an hour and that that job occurred on the 16th of August yesterday and the description here pulled in our Harvest notes so that was collaboration with the IT team and then same for our marketing line item entry here which occurred on the 14th on Monday for a website redesign so we have our subtotals here we have all of our customer information so this invoice is ready to be sent off to up to Roger Mills and again that could step could be automated as well but of course Roger Mills doesn’t exist so that’s that is an example of how Insightly can be used along with AppConnects to really make your CRM the central hub for your business operations they can bring teams together and we can do a lot of a lot of really cool automated things using AppConnect in conjunction with Insightly I want to wrap things up here by just giving a quick look at a few pretty simple dashboard cards that I threw together related to this process that we walked through so I am going to jump to my home page here you can see that I have a custom dashboard named elevation 10 000 you can make these you can share them you can add existing cards or create your own but I have added I believe four cards here that are related to what we just walked through so first we are looking at time tracking by project as well as by type so we can see that for Warbucks Industries we have three hours of onboarding and let me do this let’s refresh the data here there we go so this is our new project on the right three and a half hours of marketing and six hours of project management we also have a dashboard with incomplete Asana tests and because we automatically pulled in that new Asana task a few minutes ago we can see that we have that task listed here related to our new project and then at the bottom we have two tabular dashboard cards that list all of our unpaid and paid invoices thank you very much for your time and if you’d like to learn more please reach out to you Insightly and our sales team will take care of you and thanks again Bud Luke that was so great thank you so much for showing how all of that fits together it was really really nice absolutely so I think we can move on to questions actually now Luke I’ll maybe ask you have you done any other webinars or any other demos of of other AppConnect Integrations yeah actually we did a webinar in conjunction with QuickBooks Online near the beginning of the year so if there’s any interest in learning more about Integrations involving QuickBooks Online our team will share a link to that webinar in a follow-up email and please feel free to take a look another question here so I know you’re involved in a lot of sales processes what integration requests are you seeing out there or what what seems to be most typical so we get a CR request that really span across the board every customer is different and that’s the beauty of AppConnect is as long as we’re able to access a web-based API we are able to interface with any and or all third-party applications that are a part of your business process yeah I mean that’s a really good point right there’s a lot of flexibility here and there’s a lot that can be done and I think the main thing is for people to just inquire and reach out to us then I think that’s a really good transition if you’re not a current user of Insightly and a new CRM is in your future we would absolutely love to talk to you Insightly CRM is very easy to adopt super customizable and like you’ve just seen integrates really easily with any other application that you use to run your business so we hear from customers that they’re fully up and running with Insightly in just weeks and growing Revenue up to you know 300 percent in less than a year and one of the the best aspects of Insightly is that it’s a true platform so Insightly started as a CRM company but has since added Insightly marketing a full-featured marketing automation platform and Insightly service a customer service ticketing system that that we actually use ourselves to support thousands of customers and we’re now offering 30 off entire platform pricing so there’s really no better time to consider Insightly thank you so much for joining for taking the time with us today and I wish you all a wonderful month of August and end of summer [Music]  

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