Dreamforce 2016 Recap

Einstein and AI

One of the new hot items on the Sf radar these days is the concept of AI, or artificial intelligence. Dreamforce had an entire section of the conference dedicated to “Einstein”. The early and most basic implementations of this technology are the automated phone systems that we all don’t like. The banks were some of the first to roll these out a very long time ago. Today’s AI systems in Salesforce provide better segmenting for marketing campaigns and polished auto support response. They also provide a better version of the phone support system.

Marking Camping Segmenting

In the olds days, a Marketing Expert would build a segmented by age, income, and other criteria to break out a big marketing spend. Altering the content and\or altering the marketing media. The decisions on how all this would be accomplished would be done by the human.  Salesforce’s Einstein mines your existing data, and provides these segmenting decisions for you; at a much more granular level. Modification of content based on your profile is also a focus of these new systems. AI is also integrated with Social Media to monitor your interests, and alter the targeted marking accordingly. Now all of this might sound very pie in the sky, but it’s being used effectively now.

The other major advancements on the AI front include the ability of Salesforce to scan an image and make decisions based on the content. A real world demo of this was a real estate app, where a user could upload an image, and the Salesforce app was able to alter search results to match a house as a “Contemporary House”, when the user simple uploaded an image and asked the search engine to find houses that look like this one.

25 new apps

If you want to be a Salesforce developer, admin, or power user, it’s a good idea to monitor the tools available in the app store. The speaker did a simple filter for recent 5 star aps, and did a quick review. This was my short list of apps I’m going to check out. It’s also on my radar now to search the app store just as he did.

  • Conversica – AI prospecting of new leads
  • Chattomate – filters for chatter
  • Magic Robot – assign contact to a roll in an opportunity, Sales reps don’t like to-do this, Camping recommendations.
  • Digital Genius – Service FAQ review historical chats Confidence level for auto response or send response to human for review.
  • Training helpers, video helpers
  • Persado – change the tone of the msg, different test, see results. Then blast the big list
  • CloudAware – Monitor all your cloud servers etc…
  • TimezoneIQ – tags leads across the world on are the open or not
  • Spanning Backup for Salesforce – automate your backups. Permission based restoration capabilities

Highly generalized code

A review of high end coding particles, this lecture gave great insight on Design Patters and some of the other development tools for hard core Salesforce programmers. Lesson learned in this session were that a Design Patter should only be used as a rough template and that it is bad practice to mix and match design patterns like lego blocks. There was also a good review of the Tool API; a must resource for Salesforce Programmers.

Lightning Interactive Class:

We built a somewhat robust Lightening App in less than 2 hours. It was one of many tutorials in Trail Head available to the masses. Yes, a good deal of the code was already writer, so we didn’t really “build” a Salesforce Lightening App from scratch in 2 hours, but it was a great crash course into Lightning.

Other Notable comments from Dreamforce 2016

The Microsoft Outlook Integration with Salesforce was impressive, installation and testing for a client is already in progress

Better Shopping Cart system are a hot topic, and should improve going forward.

It took me a little while to find my way around, and get the feel of all of it. Hopefully I get to see some of the sessions I missed via webcasts, and I should be better prepared to take full advantage of Dreamforce 2017.

No I didn’t see U2, I had spent 3 long days at a rock fest the day weekend before #DF16, so I wasn’t in the mood.