Salesforce Unveils Social Networking Initiatives For Businesses


Salesforce on Wednesday unveiled a series of social networking programs, designed to leverage the company's cloud-based applications to help businesses in sales, marketing, communications, data collection and analysis.

The new programs continue the company's move to use social networking innovations for business needs, said Scott Holden, Salesforce senior director for solutions marketing at Salesforce, in an interview with CRN at the company's Dreamforce 2012 conference in San Francisco.

"What we're talking about now is business as social," he said.

[Related: 10 Hot Products To See At Dreamforce]

Salesforce is unveiling five new programs, available Wednesday.

Salesforce Chatter Communities for Partners is an interactive social community portal to allow businesses to build private, branded communities.

Built on the Chatter Communities platform, Chatter Communities for Partners allows partners, suppliers and distributors to build communities to drive sales with deal registration, collaboration and use of sales tools.

Salesforce Marketing Cloud is a social networking platform for marketing, created with technology Salesforce received from two companies it bought in the last year. Salesforce purchased Radian6, a provider of social media monitoring, for $340 million in March 2011, and purchased Buddy Media, which manages social media accounts, for $689 million in August 2012.

Marketing Cloud unifies in one platform traditional marketing tasks such as content, engagement, advertising, workflow, automation and measurement. With Marketing Cloud, CMOs can manage all social marketing activity and access related assets in one place.

Data.com Social Key leverages real-time, public, social data from tweets, blogs, YouTube videos and other sources to give users a view of customer characteristics.

The program links that information with traditional data, such as phone numbers and employer names, to give businesses data to develop more connections with customers.

Salesforce Touch, a mobility application, is optimized for tablets and phones, including iPhone, iPad and Android devices and allows users to work in the Salesforce cloud platform.

Salesforce Sales Cloud can be used with Salesforce Chatter to connect with customers and build sales in a social networking environment.

Chatter Communities for Service allows the creation of new service communities to deliver customer service with a single destination to exchange information among colleagues and company experts.

Chatter Communities for Service can be used with the Service Cloud’s social contact center to help customers. Additionally, Desk.com, the Service Cloud for small business, will allow SMBs to access customer services as well.

PUBLISHED SEPT. 19, 2012