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Top 5 Takeaways from Salesforce Connections 2023

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Salesforce Connections 2023 promised new ways for businesses and individuals to better drive innovation, efficiency, and growth – it did not just meet these expectations but exceeded them! Other Perficient colleagues and I were proud to represent our strong Salesforce practice and were also prepared to take home loads of new information. Along with the countless relationships strengthened and lessons learned, here are the top 5 takeaways from this year’s Connections.

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Data Cloud is everywhere. 

And it is in the prime time now! Data Cloud is not just for Marketing, it is going to drive all traditional clouds such as Sales, Service, and Experience while also driving Industry clouds such as Manufacturing Cloud, Health Cloud, and Financial Services Cloud. It is great to see Data Cloud expand beyond the Marketing use cases of working with Marketing Cloud Personalization and Engage. I can’t wait to see all the ways it will accelerate the growth of the clients we work with.

ChatGPT and AI/ML are increasingly important to our daily work activities.

Connections had great demos about having ChatGPT produce starter content for emails and subject lines. There also were interesting demos on how it can deliver starter code for Apex or MuleSoft. Wow!

The energy surrounding Account Engagement (Pardot) was very positive! 

The crowds were happy to hear that soon we will be able to bring in Account Engagement Prospect data into Data Cloud through a pre-built data stream. Then we’ll do a segment and send that segment back to Account Engagement so the email can be sent. Innovations like these are making everyday tasks much easier.

There is a new integration between Marketing Cloud Journey Builder and WhatsApp. 

Another exciting new feature was added Marketing Cloud Journey Builder – the ability to send a WhatsApp message. I believe this will be a very helpful feature for the customers of Marketing Cloud to leverage. When comparing this feature to regular SMS, generally users have to purchase an SMS short code and wait for it to be activated, which can take many months. Messages delivered to WhatsApp can now be implemented on a shorter timeframe when consent is collected. Note that consent for WhatsApp has to be its own checkbox/selection item. More specifically, consent for SMS and WhatsApp cannot be shared within the same checkbox.

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Sprout Social is now the preferred social partner with Salesforce. 

Users are able to create a lead or case directly from the Sprout console/app. A managed package brings forward the Sprout interface that allows service agents to respond directly to social threads directly on the case layout. So, if your client asks what they should replace Social Studio with, a great and safe answer is Sprout Social.

Salesforce once again followed through with an incredibly well-planned and inspiring event. The lessons I learned from speakers, demos, and conversations with countless individuals will truly help push our Salesforce practice forward. Until next time, Connections!

 

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Terry Luschen

Terry serves as a Delivery Director in Perficient's Salesforce practice. He comes from a Technical Architecture background and has 18+ Salesforce certifications and accreditations. Terry currently serves as Perficient's Salesforce Marketing Cloud practice lead.

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