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When do sales reps need MapPoint (rather than Streets & Trips)?
My Point...Exactly
This question/problem has come up many times in my training sessions, and I thought I’d share it with LaptopGPSworld members:

While Microsoft Streets and Trips is the perfect productivity tool for many sales reps seeking to increase sales by maximizing prospect visits, in some cases they have a need to export their data from their map to use it in a spreadsheet. In that case, I steer them towards Microsoft MapPoint. Here’s an example from this week:

A roofing contractor wants to make sure his sale reps hit as many households in a given neighborhood to ensure every potential prospect has been contacted. He wants a list his reps can check off for each prospect in the targeted zone (and he wants management control to ensure their efforts are maximized in each target area).

He’s tried sorting his prospect lists by phone number, zip code, etc. but none of the methods he’s tried has given him what he wants – a list of prospects that are located within a defined target area down to the neighborhood level.

Though Streets and Trips and MapPoint are virtually identical in many respects, MapPoint does have several features not found in S&T – one is the ability to draw a square, circle or polygon around an area, and export the pushpins contained in the area out to an Excel spreadsheet (in my view, the most important distinction between S&T and MapPoint).

So, he downloaded a free trial of MapPoint, imported the prospect lists he already had, and was able to create exactly the sales/management tool he’s been looking for to increase his sales.

In this case, it makes sense for this company to spend $300 on MapPoint vs $40 on Streets and Trips specifically for the ability to quickly export pushpins to Excel from a user defined area.
Art Cole
I need to be able to do reports for my company. This would involve the ability to report certain information about hotels and motels in my region of the country. My thought was to use Streets and Trips with GPS to efficiently locate and visit the properties. They would then be tagged as visited with appropriate profile information. Once a month I would then produce a report that would include properties visited, date, address, city, state, zip, phone, fax. I would like to do my reports in Excel because I could drill down and massage the data further once it is in Excel.

Question 1 - Is it correct that I can use Streets and Trips with GPS to navigate to hotels and motels?

Question 2 - Will Streets and Maps allow me to tag/mark the properties as visited and other user information?

Question 3 - Will I be able to export data that can ultimately be imported for reporting?

Thank you for your assistance.
Ken in Regina
1. Yes.

2. Yes.

3. Not really.

...ken...
Marvin Hlavac
Keith, thanks for positing the information, and Art, welcome to Laptop GPS World. I will just add here a link related to the topic of using mapping software programs for business:

http://www.laptopgpsworld.com/661-video-teaches-sales-reps-how-use-microsoft-streets-trips
Art Cole
Thank you for the responses to my questions and particularly the links to the videos. For sure I will watch them.

Usually 2 out of 3 affirmatives would not be bad. However, the reports I must provide my company are mandatory and it appears that Microsoft Streets and Trips cannot assist in this task. This puts me back to a position of repetitive data entry. I am somewhat surprised that the feature to export the data from this program is not supported. It would seem to me that the ability to export a .txt, .csv, or .xls file would be important to all users, especially sales people.

Would anyone have any recommendations or suggestions of software or tools to accomplish my goal?
Ken in Regina
Art,

If you look back to the original post at the start of this discussion you will see that Keith talks about Mappoint being a better choice for many business purposes.

In case you have not considered it, the mapping and navigation work just like Streets&Trips but it has a lot more features and functions for business uses. Streets&Trips is the cheap consumer version. Mappoint is the serious business version.

Mappoint integrates beautifully with the Microsoft Office suite and gives you lots of exporting and data transferring capabilities. Take a look at it. It has a free 60-day trial for download.

...ken...
Art Cole
Ken, Thank you for that. I completely missed the reference to MapPoint. I will certainly have a look at that program.
My Point...Exactly
Awsome discussions guys.

Art - with respect to 'Tagging' the hotels - in Streets and Trips, this notation would be manual (you creating a pushpin). And as Ken has pointed out - MapPoint is the program you'll need to EXPORT data out of S&T.

S&T is essentially the 'little brother' to MapPoint - with the same look/feel/functionality. However - MapPoint does have additional 'business' features - such as the ability to export data, included demographics, and a software developer's toolkit. Which, for example, could allow a programmer to develop a 'radar' function that could automatically detect when a GPS reading was taken within the radius of a designated hotel (I'm winging it a little bit on that, but pretty sure it's well within MP's capabilities). So indeed - it sounds like MapPoint may be the product for you.

Ken - I'll disagree with you just a bit in your differentiation between S&T and MapPoint - with Streets & Trips being the 'Cheap Consumer Version' and MapPoint being the 'serious business version'. The reality is, thousands of businesses use S&T (and I'm sure a few consumers use MapPoint). in my mind - the differentiation between the two products is defined by need. if you don't need Demographics, a software developers toolkit - or the ability to export data out of your map - then S&T is just fine. If you do need those things - then MapPoint is your choice.

If a company has 100 salesreps on the road - and they don't need the features described above - then spending $64 per rep for S&T makes more sense that $330 per rep.

What I've found with my clients is that they'll use MapPoint in their inside sales operations - set up calls for their reps with all associated details - then export the data to Excel on the server - and the salesrep imports that data into their Streets and Trips.
SpadesFlush
Quote:
Originally Posted by My Point...Exactly
...

Though Streets and Trips and MapPoint are virtually identical in many respects, MapPoint does have several features not found in S&T one is the ability to draw a square, circle or polygon around an area, and export the pushpins contained in the area out to an Excel spreadsheet (in my view, the most important distinction between S&T and MapPoint).

...
Up front, I want to disqualify myself somewhat in this thread's discussion because I do not have MapPoint, however...

S&T 2010 has some new powers in this area that might close the gap between it and MapPoint. Specifically, the user can define an area for reduction of a PushPin population, either "in" or "out." This is done by dragging to a rectangular (equilateral or not) area on the map, right-clicking to get the context-sensitive menu, and selecting "Delete visible pushpins inside area" or "Delete visible pushpins outside area" according to one's needs. You can now export this reduced Pushpin set. Granted, it does not seem doable with circle or polyhedron shapes.

So, one can import a large data set as Pushpins, pare it down to geographic constraints, and export as a modified data set. One can also add these Pushpin locations as Stops to a route.
My Point...Exactly
Hey Spades - Thanks for pointing this new 2010 feature out - I had looked at GPX import/Export - but hadn't really thought about it in this vain!

I can in fact reduce the pushpin set (with a rectangle) as you suggest - then export a GPX file. I'll look for a conversion to text utility to look at the data exported in the GPX. When I import the file back into S&T, I don't see all the associated data from the original pushpins - but perhaps it is in the file (?).

Based on my observations so far, I don't think this export feature can compete with MapPoint - in that MP exports directly to Excel, without the need to massage the data.

I agree - this does close the gap a bit bewtween S&T and MapPoint with regards to 'exporting'. Not totally there though - but still cool!

Thanks for pointing it out - I look forward to exploring furthur.
SpadesFlush
Quote:
Originally Posted by My Point...Exactly
...

I can in fact reduce the pushpin set (with a rectangle) as you suggest - then export a GPX file. I'll look for a conversion to text utility to look at the data exported in the GPX. When I import the file back into S&T, I don't see all the associated data from the original pushpins - but perhaps it is in the file (?).

Based on my observations so far, I don't think this export feature can compete with MapPoint - in that MP exports directly to Excel, without the need to massage the data.
...
Well, maybe Streets and Trips 2010 is only a baby step towards MapPoint; after all we can't expect MSFT to cannibalize its own product line-up. Your observations about what S&T will export are correct; associated flag text will be parsed out in the export process. Therefore, this would only be useful for just the bare essentials of the Pushpin info. This would not be adequate for a sophisticated sales management environment.

I like what you said about using a mix of MapPoint and S&T in some situations. That seems to strike the right balance.

There have been discussions on the Forum about this incomplete data export issue and I am sure our friends at MSFT 'get it.'
Ken in Regina
Hi SpadesFlush,

It's possible that this issue might be similar to the issue of Streets&Trips only exporting stops in a route file. That is, if you focus on the usual target of these exports -- typically a handheld navigation device -- most probably won't use that data anyway.

In the "My Locations" or "Favorites" on the handhelds you can typically put a name and a location and that's it. They'll just ignore the rest of the stuff in the waypoint records in the GPX file.

The pattern I'm seeing is that Microsoft seems to have focused on handhelds. If the most common handhelds won't use it, Streets won't bother to export it.

Unfortunately that limits its usefulness for other purposes. But at least it's understandable why they did it as a good starting point.

...ken...
SpadesFlush
Ken, I am not sure what the reasoning is but the result is the same.

That is not to say that is a bad strategy on MSFT's part: the real 'power' users of a full data export regime would most likely be corporates who, presumably, will be less price-sensitive.

For one, if I were really fussed about that capability, I would go for MapPoint; the price is still reasonable when compared to many other apps.
Ken in Regina
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpadesFlush
For one, if I were really fussed about that capability, I would go for MapPoint; the price is still reasonable when compared to many other apps.
That's also my feeling. I'm always surprised when people object to spending $300 on a deductable business expense when Mappoint is mentioned. All but the very tiniest and most shaky businesses shouldn't have difficulty with an expense like that, especially when it's such a worthwhile investment. If they would simply do the business case they would probably find it would pay off in about a week just from all the time they'll waste trying to figure out how to do it for "free" or "cheap" with some other method.

I think the suggestion of Keith and others to use a mixed strategy is excellent .. Streets&Trips for the field folks (don't waste money buying features that aren't needed) and Mappoint in the office for the data aggregation and analysis (don't waste money trying to cook up an alternate patchwork solution when it's already built into Mappoint).

...ken...
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