London’s Calling: What should be the Salesforce focus in 2019?
London’s Calling is the largest Salesforce event in Europe, bringing together the entire Salesforce community: company leaders, Trailblazers and end-users.
This year’s event – “LC2018” – featured talks on Salesforce features, updates on the current working environment, and even a live Demo Jam with winners selected by the audience.
LC2018 also offered attendees real insight into Salesforce’s strategic planning, future priorities and outlined a keynote address that demonstrated the Salesforce Product Roadmap.
Informing FY2019: Salesforce Roadmap Exercise
The Salesforce Roadmap exercise was a forward-looking and customer-focused initiative that aimed at getting real feedback while identifying the top “care abouts” from Salesforce users.
Led by Bret Taylor, Chief Product Officer of Salesforce, the project visited centres in UK, US and Europe, including: London, Amsterdam, Atlanta, New York, Chicago, Minneapolis, San Francisco, London and Washington DC.
Using surveys, focus groups and 1-on-1 meetings, Salesforce asked users:
- What do you want out of your Salesforce experiences?
- What do you want us to build next?
Users were also asked to complete this sentence: “FY2019 should be the year of [insert priority here]”
The discussion that followed revealed some fascinating stuff.
Let’s have a look.
Identifying the Top Priorities
The list of discussion topics was long: General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), Lightning, Marketing Cloud, just to start.
But the big ones that came forward were as follows.
The first big topic was Salesforce Einstein.
Many companies said they are considering AI projects with Salesforce Einstein, but they need more information to help determine whether AI is for them.
Salesforce publishes case studies of big companies undertaking big projects, but they need real cases that answer:
- How much money did it cost?
- What were their timelines?
- How long until they saw benefits?
In short, Salesforce Einstein is attractive and the potential for AI is significant. However, people need more guidance about what’s involved.
The second item was Salesforce Lightning.
In particular, users wanted to understand the longer-term view of the Lightning lifecycle.
Is Lightning at the beginning, middle or end?
Companies talked enthusiastically about investing in Lightning features, but it takes integration, training, roll-out and implementation. If Salesforce is planning to change Lightning next, users must plan for it.
As the presentation said: Is Lightning the beginning of a bigger story? If so, please tell us now.
Integration of Third-Party Data
The Salesforce Product Roadmap yielded a lot of conversations about analytics, dashboards and the importance of Customer 360.
This led to the next point: the integration of third-party data.
For many users, Salesforce is their principal business platform, but it does not hold the entirety of their data. Many users asked: how can we make sure Salesforce takes in all the information, then make it easy to produce reports?
The Top Ask for the Future
So, what was the top ask for the year?
Was it AI, Lightning, integration of third-party data, or something else?
When we step back and look at the big ask, we see how Salesforce is truly moving ahead as the world’s leading business solution.
The biggest message overall was: integration.
So, what exactly does integration mean?
Part of the story refers to integrating the third-party data as mentioned above.
But there’s more.
It’s about making a truly single CRM platform. Users called for Salesforce to ensure end-to-end integration by building amazing apps and connecting every customer touchpoint.
Some of the more prominent examples given included:
- Integrating B2B and B2C in Commerce Cloud
- Integrating Marketing Cloud and Commerce Cloud more fully into the core product suite
- Making sure Salesforce is fully integrated to qualify as your system-of-record
Salesforce has taken this feedback seriously, and according to the keynote, the company has appointed someone to lead the integration strategy for technology and product.
We’re intrigued to see the features that will come out of this priority.
Complete. Integrated. Empowered.
Overall, the Salesforce Roadmap called for great attention on completeness, integration and empowerment.
To learn how the Salesforce Product roadmap can help grow your organisation, contact Ceterna today.