3 Marketing Lessons You Can Take From Dreamforce 2018

Filed in Marketing Ideas on October 9, 2018 by

In the weeks leading up to Dreamforce 2018, whenever I mentioned to someone that I was attending Dreamforce on behalf of PFL, I was met with equal parts jealousy and sympathy. Marketing lessons aside, there really isn’t another conference like it: from the thousands of sessions tailored to pros in any industry or department, to the multitude of evening events (not to mention the Metallica concert wasn’t a bad perk either).

As a first-time attendee, I enjoyed learning about how I can hone my craft as a marketing professional from industry-leading colleagues. If you weren’t one of the 170,000 attendees at Dreamforce: don’t fret! I flew to San Francisco and braved the crowds and long Uber rides to bring you these three marketing lessons:

  1. Make it “drag and drop easy” to tackle big challenges like compliance or onboarding. By automating stuck points in complex processes, you can cut down on the time it takes to execute work and focus on bigger strategies. Angela Dunbar, Marketing Manager at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, shared how she used Salesforce Marketing Cloud’s Journey Builder and PFL to streamline onboarding and compliance for new members.

    BCBS of Michigan had the goal of optimizing the new member experience while maintaining flawless compliance standards. Previously, the company’s onboarding process would take 14 days on average and require participation from 3 departments and an external print vendor. By using Marketing Cloud to respect channel preferences, dragging and dropping PFL into the customer journey, and adding a direct mail welcome packet, Angela was able to reduce a tedious two-week process down to four days – a 73% reduction in time to communicate with new members. Plus, the automation of member data ensured that participants only received benefits information relevant to them, as mandated by the Food and Drug Administration. This reduced processing time by 50% and production costs by 56%, while still maintaining the strict compliance regulations of their industry.

    angela dunbar speaker dreamforce 2018

    Angela Dunbar, marketing manager at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, speaks to a full house at Dreamforce 2018. Dunbar shared about her success using Salesforce Marketing Cloud Journey Builder and PFL to reduce onboarding time and maintain compliance.

  2. Remember that our future customers are human, just like your fellow sales and marketing colleagues. Think about your best interaction with a sales rep. Did they lay it on thick with gimmicks and cliches? Or did they treat you like a respected professional just trying to solve a problem? Daniel Gaugler, CMO at PFL, and Ryan Gallagher, Senior Manager of ABM at Proofpoint, spoke about the impact of human-centric marketing and how Proofpoint infused their campaigns with a personal touch to the tune of 300% more opportunities.

    We sell to humans. We work with humans. But as marketers and salespeople, it’s easy to treat your future customers as faceless bundles of data who might give you money. In Proofpoint’s instance, they were struggling to gain traction with larger target accounts, as well as motivate the sales team to continue pursuing those bigger deals. By working with the sales team to identify the accounts they wanted to target and timing those accounts with orchestrated, multi-channel messages (like a meeting-maker kit that offered an Apple Watch for a meeting), they generated more than $4.5 million in new pipeline.

    marne reed PFL speaking radius b2b champions club

    Just like we might view future customers as faceless data bundles, they also are likely to view your company as a vague brand who just wants their money. Marne Reed, VP of Strategic Alliances at PFL, shared this perspective in her session at Radius’ B2B Champions Club.

  3. Break through the digital clutter down the entire marketing funnel. Just like we might view future customers as faceless data bundles, they also are likely to view your company as a vague brand who just wants their money. If all you’re doing is targeting prospects with generic marketing emails and social advertisements, that impression isn’t going to change. Marne Reed, VP of Strategic Alliances at PFL, shared tips on how to use direct mail during every stage of the customer journey to help close more deals and build lifelong advocates of your company.

    Whether you’re looking for a way to penetrate larger accounts, like Proofpoint, or welcome new members to your organization, like Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, direct mail can add a unique touch to your marketing experience and give personality to an otherwise static brand. Try examining your existing customer journey to understand where a multi-channel touch might resolve drop-off or retention issues. If deals are stalling after the first meeting, run a “Wake the Dead” campaign, or try warming up new accounts with a small door-opener kit.

Ready to apply these marketing lessons to your own strategy? If you need more inspiration, head over to our Case Studies page to learn how other PFL customers optimized their campaigns with human-centered marketing.


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