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Salesforce’s Dreamforce 2016 Conference: Key Takeaways

It’s Autumn, and there’s one way the folks in San Francisco can be certain: the attendees of Dreamforce have descended on their city once again. There’s no mistaking when the annual Salesforce conference is taking place. In 2015, there were 160,000 registered attendees. That’s equal to 18.5 percent of San Francisco’s total population!

Several Jornaya associates attended Dreamforce 2016 this week, and we wanted to share their observations from the conference, especially in relation to the adoption of consumer journey insights, intent data, customer lifecycle marketing, and predictive analytics.

Jornaya’s Key Takeaways from Dreamforce 2016

  • Customer lifecycle marketing and the consumer journey were everywhere at Dreamforce. In large part, that’s because of Salesforce’s Journey Builder product. Many of the themes, products, and content at Dreamforce connects to, references, or highlights theJourney Builder.
  • Salesforce itself wasn’t the only company talking about the consumer journey and intent data at Dreamforce. The B2B market is betting big on predictive data and consumer journey insights. This space has transitioned from being a “nice to have” arrow in the marketer’s quiver to being an essential tool in driving revenue growth. What was once something marketers would say they “can’t afford” is now something “can’t afford not to have”.
  • There were at least five B2B companies at the conference promoting intent. Because there are a lot of companies delivering this message, it can be difficult to break through the clutter and understand which company is best for your business needs.
  • The B2B marketing for predictive scoring and consumer journey insights is far more developed than it is in B2C. But why? It can’t be because it’s an easier problem to solve with B2B—where there’s often several people on the buying committee who are joining the buying decision journey at different times. It seems the answer is simply that B2C marketers are behind the curve and could learn a lot from what their B2B counterparts are doing.
  • Machine learning as a means of getting predictive intelligence was definitely a big thing at Dreamforce 2016. The Salesforce Einstein product got lots of attention at the conference. Data is now raw material, and insights are products.
  • It’s clear that marketers are seeing the data more as a commodity—the differentiators are the insights and the ease with which the marketer can put that data into action with things like marketing automation, ABM, etc.

Dreamforce 2016 was the perfect venue for us to get a solid temperature read on the adoption of customer lifecycle marketing, intent data, predictive scoring, and the consumer journey. We are excited to see the burgeoning development in this area of marketing and are thrilled that Jornaya is a part of it.