The Wednesday Stack: Revving Up the Sales Team

Salesforce took steps this week to streamline features of their platform to make the lives of sales reps easier, and in particular to address the statistic that, on average, they spend 66 percent of their time on administrative and other chores rather than selling. Here are the main enhancements:

  • Inbox Now with Einstein Insights will push key account and contact information directly into sales reps’ calendars to surface what they need to know for what they’re doing next
  • Quip for Sales will streamline workflow collaboration docs in Sales Cloud to align internal and external team members through the cycle (together with an ability to templatize successful processes
  • High Velocity Sales will incorporate Sales Cadences, to guide reps through the prospecting process, and Work Queues to steer them through the prioritized tasks for the day 
  • Social Intelligence Module, powered by NLP, will provide curated social media insights from Marketing Cloud to Sales Cloud based on business topics
  • Einstein Campaign Insights brings AI to identifying best prospects to target with campaigns and which assets resonate best with them.

These initiatives seem aimed at simplifying the use of Salesforce by sales teams, and boosting their productivity within Salesforce. I asked whether this isn’t partially, at least, an acknowledgement that some Salesforce users have been turning to sales engagement, automation, and enablement apps which integrate with Salesforce to super-charge their Salesforce experience (one example among several would be Outreach).

Adam Blitzer, EVP and GM of Sales Cloud, responded: “Our latest features to streamline information flow are a great solution for busy sales reps to get the information they need faster and directly where they’re working. We’re always listening to our customers for feedback and we saw an opportunity to approach productivity in a more focused way to improve sales reps’ experiences. There’s always a level of customization and personalization that customers need in their technology, so our product is one option for customers, while some may continue to find value in our partners’ solutions.” — KD

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Last week Nissan held an event in New York’s Hudson Yards celebrating the 50th anniversary of Nissan’s sports car, the GTR. The theme, according to Nissan’s VP of marketing, Allyson Witherspoon, was “performance”— a theme dear to marketers’ hearts.  And there was admittedly lots to celebrate: large photographs of the earliest iterations of the GTR wining prestigious racing awards in Europe, America, and Japan. The evening had plenty of models of the GTR throughout, including a limited edition of this year’s model that has only 50in production. (No, you couldn’t sit in them like you can at other car shows, a letdown for this vintage car enthusiast who can’t drive). — MRS    

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Let’s shake out the inbox and see what other news we have.

  • Identity resolution, meet enterprise-scale customer data. Tapad just introduced its GraphTM technology to Arm Treasure Data‘s CDP. As we wrote a year ago, Treasure Data, as it was then known, was in the business of helping very large brands manipulate very large data-sets, and make insights available for activation. What Tapad brings to the data party is high confidence identification of users across multiple devices. The resulting symbiosis is initally available across North America, EMEA, and APAC.
  • Speaking of user IDs, news came yesterday of a partnership between data onboarding and identity resolution provider Throtle, and precision ad-targeting platform The Trade Desk. The expectation is an improvement in user match rates across the digital advertising space. 
  • The gap is widening between CX leaders and the rest of the pack, according to research conducted by Forrester, and released today by remote access solution LogMeIn. In a survey of almost 500 global customer engagement decision-makers, the study found revenue and conversion increased at double the rate for brands making CX a priority, as compared with other companies. CX prioritization included an omnichannel approach and the use of AI. The widening maturity gap is perceived as an existential threat to “laggards.”
  • We recently covered the re-branding of Spredfast and Lithium as Khoros. Now here comes the joint online community and social media management vendor with its first project announcement, Khoros Ads, providing visibility into organic and paid social campaigns on one platform. Social teams will be able to see both posts and ads in real-time, and respond to customer reactions
  • report just out from Libris by Photoshelter puts some new numbers to a consumer audience where, according to Nielsen, U.S. adults spend over 11 hours per day interacting with media. Some highlights: 75 percent of marketers see better campaign results with visual content;  80 percent use social media to distribute visual content to engage their audiences; 69 percent are sharing visual content at least once a day to engage their audiences online, which is up from 2018, and 78 percent always use a visual when posting to the digital marketing channel that engages their audience most.  — KD, CW

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