October 5 by Patrick Wolf
Year in year out, Dreamforce truly delivers above all expectation with Marc Benioff’s main keynote. Held in a new place (Moscone North), with a new look (forests covering the walls), and new, innovative customer speakers (Chevrolet, Coca Cola, and many more) – the Dreamforce 2016 main keynote was dressed in the same showstopping splendor that we have come to know and love. If you missed this years keynote, below is a quick, but comprehensive overview of the colossal event. Lets dive in.
5 Transformations in Enterprise Sales
Salesforce and Marc Benioff see 5 major transformations currently taking place in enterprise sales. These changes are happening simultaneously, creating a do or die situation for companies hoping to remain competitive going forward.
- 1. Things are getting smarter – Especially with the rise of machine learning, sales teams are getting increasingly intelligent insights to drive targeted sales – and with great initial success.
2. Things are getting faster – The length of the sales cycle historically looses deals, not wins them. However, with the refinement of sales automation software, successful sales teams are driving speedier deals. This is where Salesforce’s Lightning has a huge role to play.
3. Productivity – Productivity is becoming more conversational. Salesforce is seeing the rise of integrated messaging applications as a major game changer in enterprise sales.
4. Mobile – Ever present, the shift to mobile is a defining characteristic of the new sales trends.
5. Connectivity – The rise of IoT has changed what it means to be connected – and what it is capable of. As technology progresses, especially AI technology, we will see drastic changes to how sales teams gain that “one true view of the customer.”
Progression of Technology Trends
As Marc terms it, we are on the “march” towards AI, and smart devices. Over the last decade or so we have see this march unfold through the evolution of tech trends. The Cloud has given way to social, which in turn has given way to mobile, followed by IoT, and culminating with Artificial intelligence. AI and smart devices, however, will have much more of an impact on the world than mobile phones had – while there were/are 6 billion phones, there has the potential to be 75 billion “smart things”.
These smart things will drastically change how, and to what extent, we get close to the customer. By leveraging the vast data available through these connected devices together with Artificial Intelligence, Marc Benioff and Salesforce are re-imagining how we gain that one true view of the customer – by having it all on one platform.
Einstein (Artificial Intelligence)
Drum roll please…
And Salesforce is taking that necessary step into Artificial Intelligence with the very recent announcement of Einstein. By far the biggest topic that Marc spoke about during his keynote this year, Einstein is slated to play a massive part in Salesforce in the years to come. Both Parker Harris and Marc spoke about how they envision Einstein going foreword (although the technology is still in development).
– For Businesses AI is too complex. First and foremost, Marc and Parker stressed that they want to make it easy so that not everyone needs to be a data scientist – companies can simply get the intelligence they need. As Einstein did decades ago, Salesforce is hoping to “Create simplicity from Complexity.”
– Salesforce simplicity equation (of course modeled of the revolutionary “E=MC2”): Worlds smartest CRM = Customer Data + AI + Salesforce Platform
– It is all built on one platform. The Artificial Intelligent technology is not separate from Salesforce, it is completely embedded within their structure. See the picture on the left.