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The ability to integrate with third-party software is one of the must-haves of any modern day phone system. The manager, marketer, and company owner all need to generate data about their campaign efforts, but also must be able to share it between applications.
This sharing ability begins with an API or Application Programming Interface. In short, an API, in computer programming, consists of the routines, protocols, and tools that are used to build software and applications.
The API is the waiter in a restaurant. You have food you want to order and the kitchen who will prepare the food, but you need someone to facilitate that order. You need someone to take the order, give it to the kitchen, and then bring the food to you. In this sense, the waiter acts like an API.
The API will lay out the rules and pieces needed by programmers to make their software or application work with the Androids and iPhones of the world. In simpler terms the API acts as a blueprint, the programmers are the builders and the resulting program, application or third-party integration is the house.
Yes, it’s not just applications for your phone that use an API; any third-party software developers use APIs to integrate their product with another. There are phone system users who often want their cloud-based system to integrate with their CRM (Customer Relationship Manager) or database, or with AdWords or Bing ads. You may also need to integrate with more specialized software such as Marin Software or HubSpot as well.
Amazon, eBay, and other high profile websites, use APIs so that marketers/developers can use their pre-designed forms to build their websites. This helps them with everything from inventory to accounting.
What other applications are being integrated into cloud-based systems?
- SalesForce Marketing Cloud
- Adobe Marketing Cloud
- Rocket Fuel
- Google Analytics
- C3 Metrics