So I went to Salesforce’s pre-Cloudforce Foundation Summit yesterday.
Steven Garnett, CEO Salesforce EMEA, talked about twitter at length in his keynote speech. He said: For a company the size of Air France, who normally would ignore social networks, to take this new medium seriously, we simply gave them a demonstration: This is how many times your company name is mentioned. These are the contexts. And this is how easily you can pick these up, and reply to them, thus creating a whole new wave of positive relationships.
Cloudforce is all about integrating the mentions of your brand name on social networks into your regular system of dealing with your customers – in this case, obviously, Salesforce.com. This has a number of interesting implications:
Showing everyone the relevance of social media – the push for organisations to have a presence on the different platforms has just been increased at least tenfold.
Of course it is selling Salesforce as a CRM (Customer Relationship Management) platform – it has just come back into relevance, by cleverly marketing a typically boring sales event as something really cutting edge to all the brilliant young clever minds out there.
It is forgetting that being able to manage incoming requests from the cloud still doesn’t mean you have a proactive presence on these platforms. So by taking care of the “cloud”, organisations are wrongly given the impression that they have achieved the full scale of interactivity with the Social Networking world.
And finally, and this is what really is my big problem – At the Foundation Summit, which is Salesforce’s Corporate Social Responsibility festival of self-congratulatory business philanthropy, no mention was made of the integration of the cloud. There was no mention of the cloud, of twitter, or any social networking platform after the keynote address.
If Salesforce was serious about philanthropy, the foundation would have been the first place to roll out such integration.
But maybe that’s just me.
Now, who wanted to find out more about actually using Social Networking for good?