Dreamforce is one of the largest tech conferences in the world, and Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff’s Wednesday keynote served as the center of this year’s event. The sprawling presentation included a wide range of guests, but it also revealed how Salesforce plans to make its products more intelligent, easier to use, and mobile-first. For sales teams, each of these elements could mean a boost in productivity and frictionless communication with internal teams and prospects.
AI is Now Mainstream
Artificial intelligence (AI) was the stuff of science fiction just a decade ago. Today it’s not only real, but its animated representation appeared onstage with Benioff and cofounder Parker Harris. With Einstein, Salesforce is mainstreaming AI and bringing it to its vast user base. The shortage of qualified data scientists can put companies at a disadvantage; but Harris calls Einstein “everyone’s very own data scientist,” a solution for companies of all sizes to derive real-time insights into prospect and customer behavior.
Sales leaders who rely on predictive analytics for accurate forecasting, sales reps with access to more detail prospect behavior, and sales and marketing teams working together to improve the buyer’s journey all benefit from a clearer, more detailed picture of a prospect. The incorporation of AI into every layer of the Salesforce platform means sales teams can dive deeper into prospect data, even in the earliest stages of the sales cycle.
Conversation as a Platform
At last year’s Dreamforce, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella revealed his company’s partnership with Salesforce and why they were moving toward “conversation as a platform.” Combined with the debut of Salesforce LiveMessage and Salesforce’s partnership with Slack, it’s clear that facilitating communication between customers and companies is a central goal for the company.
With the Slack integration, Salesforce users can search for data in Salesforce directly from Slack. That gives salespeople the ability to leverage an existing tool to communicate with internal teams and share Salesforce information instantly. Prioritizing real-time communication shows that Salesforce knows its users value speed, productivity and connectivity.
This year’s Dreamforce, like others before it, centered customers and their success. But Benioff’s keynote also provided context for how Salesforce will improve the user experience, as well as the importance of data in shaping the buyer’s journey. The future of sales and marketing is in AI, but for Salesforce users, the future is already here.