As Salesforce continues to expand beyond its sales and marketing roots, there are ample questions about how it will move into the next era and beyond its initial CRM beginnings. After a spate of Salesforce acquisitions over the past year, the company has extended well beyond CRM into e-commerce and customer experience, artificial intelligence and new collaboration tools.
The question going forward is how effectively the company will integrate its billion-dollar acquisitions into the Customer Success Platform and whether its efforts will make Salesforce wide-ranging enough to truly extend beyond sales and marketing into the more wide-ranging domain of customer experience.
Click here to read THINKstrategies’ perspectives regarding how Salesforce intends to overcome these challenges and capitalize on the growing demand for Cloud-based Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) solutions in SearchSalesforce.com.
While the general public’s fascination with technology largely has been focused on the latest connected products unveiled at the recent CES conference in Las Vegas, many companies are trying to figure out where the real business opportunities lie in the long-awaited rise of the Internet of Things. One of the early proponents of IoT’s unprecedented potential was Salesforce.com, which promoted its own view of the concept in the form of the “Internet of the Customer,” or IoC.
Over the past three years, Salesforce has argued that creating connected products and services also can improve the customer experience, tighten the level of customer engagement, and create new business opportunities for the company. Since launching its IoC campaign and creating its IoT Cloud, Salesforce has been searching for the right formula to specifically meet the needs of its customers.
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Over the past two years, major vendors have braced for the oncoming wave of the internet of things. As recently as 2015, Salesforce launched its IoT Cloud — its application for managing IoT data — to much buzz and fanfare.
But since the launch of technologies like IoT Cloud, the idea of a connected world of products and services suffered from caveats, such as “it’s still early days.” But despite the buzz that accompanied Salesforce IoT Cloud and its debut, it’s hard to deny that technology played only a peripheral part at Dreamforce 2016. The shift reflects a combination of factors that have forced Salesforce to reconsider how it has positioned its IoT strategy and what it needs to do to deliver on its promises.
Click here to read THINKstrategies’ perspectives in SearchSalesforce about the market implications of this shift in focus and … Read More »
SAP’s Beyond CRM initiative and Salesforce’s Commerce Cloud are going after customer data silos and trying to create a truly omnichannel picture. While most companies know they need to bring data silos together to improve customer experience, they are struggling with how to do so.
In response, some of the largest technology vendors are creating technologies that can bring together disparate pockets of customer data and give companies a more holistic view of their customers.
Click here to read THINKstrategies’ views in SearchCRM about the escalating e-commerce battle that is reshaping the CRM marketplace and how marketing units operate.
Salesforce is betting big that the long-promised attributes of artificial intelligence are ready to go mainstream and can help fuel the company’s next chapter of unprecedented growth. With a spate of acquisitions during the past eight months and analytics tools built into its platform, Salesforce wants to bring new systems of intelligence to customers.
The company’s goal: to embed artificial intelligence (AI) into every aspect of its operations and offerings, under the name Einstein.
The vendor’s marketing team is already stoking its PR engine to create plenty of buzz around the idea of the new Salesforce AI platform powering a fresh generation of smart services that will challenge IBM’s Watson’s analytic capabilities. The steady stream of news reports, interviews with CEO Marc Benioff and behind-the-scenes briefings are helping to build anticipation for Salesforce’s annual Dreamforce conference in October.
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The recent Salesforce.com acquisition of Demandware is but one in a spate of buyouts this year. According to data from financial services firm UBS, the first half of 2016 has witnessed a frenzy of software acquisitions, with 22 in total, and there are no signs of a slowdown.
With the Demandware e-commerce technology purchase, Salesforce has positioned itself to do battle with other enterprise rivals, such as Oracle, SAP and IBM, all of which have filled out their offerings with e-commerce technologies. Technologies like Demandware are designed to unify the customer experience — regardless of the communication channel in which consumers initiate a transaction — and interact with other customer data repositories such as customer account information, marketing data and so on.
Click here to read THINKstrategies’ perspectives in TechTarget’s SearchSalesforce regarding the market implications of Salesforce’s acquisition of Demandware.
What’s Behind the Proliferation of Salesforce PaaS Offerings? A Guest Commentary in SearchSalesforce
Salesforce.com rose to prominence on its software as a service-based CRM model, where customers could stop patching and managing software, and instead purchase a subscription in the cloud.
Today, Salesforce is making a similarly assertive move in the direction of Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) offerings. However, its role as a PaaS provider and its proliferation of application development platforms are making life more complicated for customers and partners.
Click here to read THINKstrategies’ perspectives regarding Salesforce’s PaaS strategies and solutions in SearchSalesforce.
Growing acceptance of cloud computing is quickly becoming a double-edged sword for the leading players in the SaaS, PaaS and IaaS marketplaces.
As a broader set of customers adopts cloud-first strategies, even the biggest cloud players are being challenged to scale their operations to keep pace with escalating customer demands without becoming too complex for customers to easily utilize their solutions.
The clearest example of a cloud company facing these issues head-on is Salesforce.com. It’s hard to suggest the company is suffering from its own success as it continues to defy the law of big numbers by posting impressive quarterly results a regular basis. Not only is it grappling with rapid growth, it must continuously reimagine its solutions to take into consideration new variables, such as mobile, social, big data and the Internet of Things.
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THINKstrategies is pleased to now be contributing its industry perspectives to TechTarget’s SearchCRM website.
Our first guest blogpost examines Salesforce’s foray into IoT extends personalized CRM, and our second commentary discusses how SAP’s customer engagement strategy could trump CRM.
I hope you find these columns valuable and welcome your feedback.
Salesforce.com unveiled its Internet of Things (IoT) capabilities, the IoT Cloud, and new Health Cloud at Dreamforce 2015. See what I had to say about these new offerings at the event in this video interview with TechTarget’s SearchCRM.
Contact us if you’d like to discuss how these announcements impact your business.