Dreamforce 2011 was an amazing event. With over 40,000 registered attendees, this marked a new milestone for Salesforce’s annual conference in San Francisco. We had an excellent time meeting with our customers that have InsideView embedded into their CRM and met a ton of new people that wanted to know more about how our application can help drive sales and marketing efforts.

After a lot of planning on our booth and theme, it all came down to the actual event and seeing if we were able to execute as well as we wanted. Turns out we did a bit better than expected. WooHoo Insiders!!

Knowing that there was going to be a focus by attendees on Radian6 getting acquired by Salesforce and the growing trend for companies trying to become more social, we stuck with a focused message around “Cutting through the noise.” One of the chief complaints I hear about social media being used by B2B companies is that listening is great but getting to the relevant conversations that can be leveraged by sales people is difficult. That’s where sales intelligence comes into the picture and has shown to increase revenue for B2B companies.

The first Keynote by Marc Benioff focused on the Social Enterprise and showed how companies from all over the world have started collaborating and engaging within social networks and Chatter. This messaging was music to our ears since we have been leading the charge with delivering social intelligence to companies for the past 5 years.

This really got people here excited because the Social Enterprise is much larger than just sharing news with people in Chatter groups. There are very few applications that people can use to gather social intelligence on companies that enable sales and marketing teams to get alerts and monitor trigger events within their accounts. Having links to a contacts social profiles are nice but when that gets compiled with relevant business events and you’re able to see how you are connected to people in ways LinkedIn can’t show, you have a powerful application that can drive revenue in any company.

Social Selling Panel

Social Selling in the Enterprise - Dreamforce 2011 Panel

We held a session during Dreamforce around how companies can cut through the noise of social media and get very targeted intelligence on what their customers and prospects are doing. Our speakers included Umberto Milletti, InsideView; PC Christopher, Avaya Inc.; Mark Stock, Adobe Systems Inc.; Mike D’Onofrio, Concur Technologies Inc.

Social media is changing how customers interact with enterprises and how they buy. At the same time, customers’ social media conversations with peers are creating “big data.” For sales reps, making sense of all this data is overwhelming. The session showed how winning sales organizations are increasing their performance and gaining an edge on their competitors by harnessing big data and using changing customer behavior to their advantage. Each of the speakers gave real world examples of how they leverage sales intelligence to grow their pipelines and close more deals.

The Metallica Axe

We launched a mini-Dreamforce campaign around Metallica who was playing at the Global Gala. That all came about when we heard the first rumor/leak that Metallica was going to be playing at the event. We searched all over and found the most awesome giveaway possible. An autographed Metallica guitar. Then we spun up a Twitter profile for the @metallica_axe and started building the buzz. The Metallica guitar giveaway was so successful that we had people coming to our booth wondering how we worked out a deal with Dreamforce to have this as the giveaway. There was no deal, we just wanted to give away the most amazing prize during the event.

We wanted to focus on the people around Dreamforce so we identified some of the top influencers and built a presentation to showcase them.

Most influencial people at Dreamforce 2011

The autographed Metallica guitar was such a hit that Marc Benioff sent us a message when there were problems getting into the concert.

Marc Benioff Engages Metallica_axe on Twitter

The Winner of the Guitar

The winner was pulled from about 1000 names. Rebecca D. or SFDC_Nerd as she is known on Twitter was the lucky lady who walked away with the prize. After a bit of back and forth with Jetblue, Rebecca and the guitar were given VIP passes back to Boston where the axe will be cherished.

sfdc_nerd

Conclusion

Dreamforce 2011 was a great event. One of the largest events we attend every year. Getting to meet so many customers and talk to people wanting help with sales enablement is a wonderful experience. Now we just have to start thinking abut how we are going to out-do ourselves next year.

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