The uniqueness of 'CRM'
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Does this headline sound weird and boring? Yes, it does!
...might be your legitimate objection in times of artificial intelligence, blockchain and virtual reality. Absolutely true! But don't worry, with a little patience you'll see that this blog post isn't here to praise CRM systems, but rather will deal with the uniqueness of Salesforce, NASDAQ ticker symbol 'CRM', itself :)
"Customer Relationship Management is old news..."
Misunderstanding resolved? Good. Now let me try to reveal why Salesforce - from my personal point of view - will continue to stay the leading and most successful SaaS provider in the near future.
Some market research...So what makes CRM unique? Let's start with some market research: "Salesforce is named a leader for the ninth consecutive year in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for the CRM Customer Engagement Center."1 Once again, Salesforce captivates by its ability to execute and the completeness of its vision, with its competitors lagging far behind.
...right? What if you simply don't trust market research results...?! Neither do I. So let's focus on the numbers and hard facts :)
"This is nothing new..."
Some number crunching...Salesforce has continuously increased its global CRM market share to 19,9% in 2017, while its main competitors Oracle (now 8,4%) and SAP (now 6,1%) have suffered heavily2. In 2012, Salesforce and Oracle still had the same market share. Salesforce generates a revenue of $2.68 billion - per quarter! Deferred revenue grew 26% from year to year3. Impressive figures.
But let me guess, you don't like finance? Let's take a brief look at the stock market and see if we will find some proof for CRM's uniqueness there.
Some "gambling"...The chart below displays the development of the stock exchange price of CRM within the last ten years, compared to its main SaaS competitors Oracle (ORCL), Microsoft (MSFT) and SAP.
As you can see, CRM stock price has increased more than 900% in the last ten years, multiple times the growth of its competitors. So there has to be something really special here!
But let me guess, you have reservations about the stock exchange and you are still not convinced? OK. Let's identify CRM's key differentiators!
Closer look at the key differentiatorsYes, Salesforce is THE cloud computing pioneer.
Yes, Salesforce can provide the best SaaS platform and technology.
Yes, Salesforce also has the biggest brand awareness.
And... yes, Salesforce is the only company able to deliver cross cloud experience without the need for any partnerships.
However, there is one outstanding difference...
The community!Everybody who might think this is a gift from heaven... it's not. It's hard work and a part of a sophisticated strategy. From my personal point of view, the breakthrough came with the company's new branding. Ever visited a fair with several of the market leaders exhibiting their solutions? The big players' exhibition areas are designed in a serious and professional manner - no doubt! However, Salesforce makes its visitors dive into another world. It's a totally different approach which reflects that the Salesforce journey is not just about work, but more about individual passion, engagement and... fun.
Image: "Salesforce Campfire"4
Please have a look at these amazing Dreamforce stats5.
TrailblazersJust have a closer look at how Salesforce addresses its supporters: "Trailblazers". Is this just a wisely chosen term? No doubt, but it's also much more than that. Irrespective of what their motivation is... career opportunities, passion for technology or just the striving for recognition: people are really a part of this unique success story. For many of them, a job around Saleforce.com is not just a profession. Rather it's a chance to be part of a big family - "Ohana", how the company itself calls its corporate culture.
TrailheadYou get a similar feeling when you try to improve your Salesforce knowledge. When I started as a Salesforce Consultant in 2011, the learning ressources were still limited... but more importantly, they were not really "sexy". Today, Trailhead, the official Salesforce learning platform, provides a big variety of guided learning paths through modules and projects, playful interaction and an outstanding learning experience, based on the principle of incentivation. It's really fun!
So much more...Or just think about the Salesforce Success Community, Salesforce MVPs, Salesforce developer and user groups... there are so many other pillars of the company's community. Maybe, you've asked yourself whether SaaS competitors will able catch up with the market leader. Honestly, I don't think so. They might invest heavily into their brand, their functional range or technology. However, they can't offer the one aspect that makes CRM unique: its outstanding community!
Dreamforce Global GatheringYou're from the greater Munich area and want to convince yourself? On November 29th, the Munich Salesforce Developer Group and User Group will "merge" once again for "Dreamforce Global Gathering".
Developers please register here: Meetup. Business users, this way please: XING.
Some more hot stuff...And if you can't join the meeting in Munich or one of the other Dreamforce Global Gatherings, you might be interested in the hottest community news...
MyTrailheadOne of the bigger announcements in the keynote of Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff at Dreamforce was "MyTrailhead". "With this Salesforce is expanding the Trailhead platform to enable companies to customise their own relevant learning environment with owned content and branding, to support learning processes specifically for their company, as well as their skill base"6.
Seize the trail"Earn Trailhead badges between November 13 - December 31, 2017 for a chance to win an awesome prize based on your Trailblazer Rank. The more badges you earn, the more entries you’ll receive. The higher your rank, the better the prize you could win."7.
For more details please have a look at the official offer.
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