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Open Password - Freitag, den 17. September 2021

# 974
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Outsell – Salesforce – Salesforce+ - Business Media Platform – Netflix – LinkedIn – B2B Companies – Streaming Service – Dreamforce Conference – Channels – Dreamforce Experience – Premium Content – Unified Experience – Trailblazer ID – Brand Sponsorships – Captivating Experience – Work and Home Intertwined – Adobe – Microsoft – Oracle – SAP – Informa – RELX Group – IDG – Bloomberg TV+ - Bloomberg Live – Trailhead – Slack – Richer Media Garden – Building Trust and Loyalty – Consumer Media - AFD – Think Tank – Johannes Schillo – Untergrundblättle – AI Regulation - Francois Candelon - Rodolphe Charme di Farlo - Midas De Bondt - Theodoros Evgeniou - Business Strategies – Harvard Business Review – Germany´s Souvereign Cloud – Google – Deutsche Telekom – Fortune – Michael A. Mann – Propagandaschlacht ums Klima – Verlag Solare Zukunft

I. Titelgeschichte

Salesforce Goes All in on B2B Media Experiences Start of „Salesforce+ as „Business Netflix“ - By Randy Giusto

II. Über den Tellerrand
  1. Die AFD und ihr Think Tank
  2. AI Regulation is Coming
  3. Germany´s „Sovereign Cloud, provided by Google
  4. Wie wir die Anstifter klimapolitischer Untätigkeit besiegen
Outsell´s September Contribution

Salesforce Goes All in on B2B Media Experiences

Start of „Salesforce+ as „Business Netflix“

By Randy Giusto, VP & Lead Analyst – Media and Marketing Strategy and Intelligence Solutions
Randy Giusto
Randy Giusto

Salesforce+ delivers a premium business media platform to entertain and engage customers across many roles and industries. It’s a clear sign that where B2B media is heading is more Netflix than it is LinkedIn. There’s an indirect impact on B2B media companies here.
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What to Know and Why It Matters.
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Salesforce is rolling out Salesforce+, a new, centralized, always-on, bingeworthy business media platform and streaming service with live and on-demand content and community for every role, industry, and line of business. Salesforce will soon run its September Dreamforce conference on Salesforce+. The business media platform will support a combination of content formats and styles, including live talks, episodic series, podcasts, CEO interviews, and expert advice, all to help Salesforce customers drive change within their own organizations.

Designed with a Netflix-esque look and feel, viewers can select content relevant to them, pause their viewing, and then come back later and resume where they left off. Salesforce Studios will produce the core content through a team of scriptwriters, editors, directors, and broadcast producers. Initially, Salesforce+ will offer six channels: Leading Through Change showcases leaders, Connections features innovative marketers, The Inflection Point offers CEO talks, Boss Talks delivers career advice, and Simply Put tackles complex business problems. The Dreamforce Experience is a separate channel with its own themes: Prime Time, Trailblazers, Customer 360, and Industries.

Salesforce built Salesforce+ based on several factors: the shift occurring in B2B media, COVID-19, the rise of online event platforms, continuing health concerns and the Delta variant, the push to a cookieless future, the popularity of communities, and the move by customers to reimagine their strategies, companies, and careers. Salesforce+ will have premium content that’s role-based, inspiring, and development-oriented. Prior to this, Salesforce spread its content across multiple platforms, including Salesforce.com, its Trailhead site, several online event solutions, plus YouTube, Vidyard, and On.com. The company will now bring all its content together in one place through a unified Salesforce+ experience. Platform membership is free with a Trailblazer ID.

Salesforce is not monetizing Salesforce+ from a subscription or advertising perspective, though it will offer brand sponsorships much like it does with its Dreamforce event. Key partners can sponsor a talk and get a request-to-demo icon placed on the content, which then pushes viewers to a lead form to schedule a demo.
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Analyst Rating: Positive
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Positive Salesforce+ points to the next big thing in B2B media: delivering captivating experiences. Outsell expects peoples’ work and home lives to remain very much intertwined, at least for the next one to two years: The slow return to the office, business travel, and onsite events will keep it that way. What people experience from their online streaming services today — whether it’s delivered by Netflix, Apple TV+, Disney+, or others — they’ll soon expect when they log into their favorite business media sites as well.
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Winners and Losers.
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The contrast between Salesforce+ and Microsoft’s LinkedIn is stark. Both will serve as destination sites for business media content, community, and learning. One platform comes from a leader in enterprise sales, marketing, and service automation, the other from a leading B2B community with an enterprise software giant as a parent.

Salesforce’s main drivers here were to democratize the content and vision of the new digital-first world that’s emerging and to help its customers succeed in it. All the pieces existed previously, and content volume increased exponentially during the pandemic, but customer feedback showed that it wasn’t easy to consume. Salesforce needed to assemble it better to provide a more unified experience and stay ahead of the competition.

At its core, Salesforce competes with Adobe, Microsoft, Oracle, and SAP, but it’s the B2B media and information delivery model that Salesforce+ most upsets here. Salesforce users will have even more reasons to stay within the platform each day, if it not only helps them get their job done but educates and now entertains them as well. Salesforce’s own salespeople and sponsors can now refer their customers and prospects to specific areas of Salesforce+ to participate and learn more. It not only serves as a content destination site but as a sales tool as well.

LinkedIn, by comparison, with separate LinkedIn Premium and LinkedIn Learning offerings, looks very tired. Oracle’s Oracle Live and SAP’s Sapphire Now both serve as live and on-demand 365 news and events platforms but not as combined content, events, learning, and community plays. Adobe offers its resource center with event sessions, articles, reports, tutorials, and courses. While it is full of content, it doesn’t feel like a rich content platform, which we expect from Adobe, given its deep consumer market roots in creativity, design, and marketing.

Large B2B media and business information players, like Informa, RELX Group, and IDG, don’t have anything close to Salesforce+. The more B2B media content that Salesforce builds into Salesforce+, the more it will compete indirectly with these players for their audiences over time. The closest comparison to Salesforce+ in a B2B setting is perhaps Bloomberg TV+, which combines live and on-demand content with market data, but its events platform Bloomberg Live is a separate offering. Still, Bloomberg is a fair comparison here in terms of its production value.
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What’s Next.
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It’s not a leap to expect Salesforce to pull its entire Trailhead learning-focused content into Salesforce+, build out a more proper community inside the platform, and add some personalization features. It could also integrate Slack channels for viewers to have discussions around the content they just viewed and create groups of people with similar interests. Salesforce built Salesforce+ on top of its cloud platform Salesforce.com; it didn’t come from rolling up multiple media and technology companies into a bigger media play.

As the world goes through its own digital transformation to an all-digital, work-anywhere environment, companies will increasingly invest in digital sales, marketing, commerce, customer 360, learning, community, and engagement tools. These tools help them get closer to their customers as well as their employees in the new digital economy arising from the pandemic. Adobe, Microsoft, Oracle, and SAP might have the ability to do this through their own tools and platforms, and we expect them to respond at some point. They’ll need creativity and ingenuity to pull it off, too.
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Essential Actions.
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This development highlights a few points that B2B media companies in the data, information, and analytics economy need to consider going forward.

Build a Richer Media Garden. B2B media companies remain in a protracted battle to keep audiences on their sites and in their apps. So many things out there today distract their readers, subscribers, and paying customers. They’ve installed paywalls, launched subscription newsletters, and amped up social media efforts, all in the name of increasing their reach and retention rates. They need to spend as much time building and maintaining their media gardens so that audiences keep coming back to harvest the crop. This means providing a wide variety of content that serves different needs. Consider a content play that informs through news and information, captivates through news analysis and research, educates through learning and events, and engages through community.

Infuse Platforms with Data in a Trusted Way. Data drives today’s economy, and next-generation business media platforms, too. Use that data to learn more about customers — what they want and don’t want, how they want to engage, and with whom. Push registrations and subscriptions to give visitors broader access to content. Not only collect that first-party, opt-in data but keep it fresh and share back how it will get used. Building trust and loyalty will go a long way when it comes to keeping retention rates high.

Overdeliver on Experience. The examples of high-quality content experiences are abundant in consumer media. Salesforce is doubling down on providing a similar look and feel for B2B audiences. Don’t make the B2B media experience so starkly different and distant, especially in today’s all-digital, work-anywhere environment.
Über den Tellerrand:
Empfehlungen der Woche*


Die AFD und ihr Think Tank

Johannes Schillo, Scharf rechts – Ideologieproduktion aus dem Geist des nationalen Mainstreams Die AfD und ihr Think Tank, in: Untergrundblättle, 14. September. Mit Blick auf die Bundestagswahl 2021 in Deutschland hat sich die Auseinandersetzung um die öffentliche Förderung der AfD-nahen Desiderius-Erasmus-Stiftung (DES) zugespitzt. https://www.untergrund-blättle.ch/politik/deutschland/die-afd-und-ihr-think-tank-6617.html

AI Regulation is Coming

François Candelon, Rodolphe Charme di Carlo, Midas De Bondt, and Theodoros Evgeniou, AI and machine learning: AI Regulation Is Coming - How to prepare for the inevitable, in: Harvard Business Review, September/Oktober 2021. Given that the growing reliance on AI—particularly machine learning—significantly increases the strategic risks businesses face, companies need to take an active role in writing a rulebook for algorithms. As analytics are applied to decisions like loan approvals or assessments of criminal recidivism, reservations about hidden biases continue to mount. The inherent opacity of the complex programming underlying machine learning is also causing dismay, and concern is rising about whether AI-enabled tools developed for one population can safely make decisions about other populations. Unless all companies—including those not directly involved in AI development—engage early with these challenges, they risk eroding trust in AI-enabled products and triggering unnecessarily restrictive regulation, which would undermine not only business profits but also the potential value AI could offer consumers and society. https://hbr.org/2021/09/ai-regulation-is-coming

Germany´s „Sovereign Cloud“,
provided by Google

David Meyer, TechCloud - Germany’s ‘sovereign cloud’ is coming—and it’s provided by Google, in: Fortune, 8. September. Now Germany is getting a “sovereign cloud” that will target sectors such as automotive and health care, along with the public sector, when it launches next year. It will be run by T-Systems, the Deutsche Telekom–owned systems integrator that is one of Gaia-X’s founding members, in partnership with the distinctly non-European cloud giant that is Google.
https://fortune.com/2021/09/08/germany-sovereign-cloud-google-t-systems/

Wie wir die Anstifter klimapolitischer Untätigkeit besiegen

Buch: Michael A. Mann, Propagandaschlacht ums Klima - Wie wir die Anstifter klimapolitischer Untätigkeit besiegen, Verlag Solare Zukunft, Erlangen 2021. Der Klimawissenschaftler Michel E. Mann zeigt, wie die fossile Brennstoffindustrie seit 30 Jahren eine Kampagne führt, um von Schuld und Verantwortung abzulenken und Maßnahmen gegen den Klimawandel zu verzögern. In dem Buch präsentiert er seinen Aktionsplan zur Rettung des Planeten.
Recyceln. Weniger Fliegen. Weniger Fleisch essen. Das sind nur einige der Maßnahmen, von denen uns gesagt wurde, dass sie den Klimawandel verlangsamen können. Aber die übermäßige Betonung des individuellen Verhaltens ist das Ergebnis einer Marketingkampagne, die es geschafft hat, die Verantwortung für die Bewältigung des drohenden Klimawandels vollständig auf die Schultern des Einzelnen zu legen.

Die Unternehmen der fossilen Brennstoffindustrie sind dem Beispiel anderer Branchen gefolgt, die ebenso die Schuld von sich weisen – man denke nur an „Waffen töten keine Menschen, Menschen töten Menschen“ – oder an das Greenwashing der Getränkeindustrie mit der „Crying Indian“ Kampagne in den 1970er Jahren. Gleichzeitig blockieren sie Bemühungen, den Ausstoß von Kohlenstoffdioxid zu regulieren oder zu bepreisen. Sie führen PR-Kampagnen durch, die darauf abzielen, praktikable Alternativen zu diskreditieren. Und sie entziehen sich ihrer Verantwortung, das von ihnen geschaffene Problem zu lösen. Das Ergebnis ist für unseren Planeten verheerend.

In „Propagandaschlacht ums Klima“ vertritt Michael E. Mann die Ansicht, dass noch nicht alles verloren ist. Er beschreibt die Fronten zwischen den Verbrauchern und den Verursachern – den Unternehmen der fossilen Brennstoffindustrie, den rechtsgerichteten Plutokraten und den Petrostaaten. Und er skizziert einen Plan, um unsere Regierungen und Konzerne zu zwingen, aufzuwachen und echte Veränderungen vorzunehmen, einschließlich:
  • einer vernünftigen, realistischen Herangehensweise bei der Bepreisung von CO2 und einer Korrektur der gut gemeinten, aber fehlerhaften, derzeit vorgeschlagenen Version des Green New Deals;
    • einer fairen Konkurrenz zwischen Erneuerbaren Energien und fossilen Energieträgern;
    • der Entlarvung falscher Narrative und Argumente, die sich in die Klimadebatte eingeschlichen haben und einen Keil zwischen diejenigen treiben, die Lösungen für den Klimawandel unterstützen;
    • einer Bekämpfung von Klimauntergangsstimmung und Hoffnungslosigkeit.
Angesichts der immens mächtigen Interessen, die den Status quo der fossilen Brennstoffe verteidigen, wird der gesellschaftliche Wandel nur mit der aktiven Beteiligung der Bürger gelingen, die den gemeinsamen Vorstoß unterstützen. Dieses Buch will überall die Menschen erreichen, informieren und befähigen, sich dem Kampf um unseren Planeten anzuschließen.

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