Next week marks the annual Salesforce.com user conference in San Francisco. As a long time CRM administrator, I always look forward to attending this event, in fact, this year will be my 7th trip to Dreamforce. In honor of that I’m listing the top 7 reasons why I love going to Dreamforce…
#7 The schwag – Not only have I accumulated some really nice Salesforce schwag over the years, but the partner expo is loaded with fun chotchkies. I’ve stuffed my suitcase with computer bags to water bottles, tee shirts, yoga mats, Crocs, movie tickets, Starbucks cards, USB drives, flashlights, key chains and more pens and highlighters than I’ll ever need. Yes, I still talk to vendors if I’m interested in their product offering (and there are hundreds of great partners at the expo), but good schwag makes any tradeshow more fun.
#6 Networking – Dreamforce is where I can really let my inner Salesforce geek shine. I have made some great contacts at Dreamforce and look forward to catching up with them every year at the conference. While affectionately teased as a “Salesforce guru” here at ReadyTalk , attending Dreamforce is my annual affirmation that there are over 15,000 Salesforce disciples out there just like me.
#5 The music – Salesforce knows how to throw a party. And, the opening night gala seems to get bigger and better ever year. It’s not easy to pull off a rock concert in a convention hall with a bunch of Salesforce admins and developers, but they’ve managed to do it with style. This year’s act is Stevie Wonder yes, the STEVIE WONDER. I’ll see you on the dance floor!
#4 The keynotes – I am always impressed by the caliber of the keynote speakers at Dreamforce. Over the years, I have been lucky enough to watch speeches from the venerable Colin Powell, Neil Young, Michael Dell and, the Jedi-Master himself—George Lucas. This year is no exception, we’ll be hearing from former president Bill Clinton.
#3 The food – Salesforce does its best to keep us all fat and happy. The conference lunches are far superior to your typical cafeteria meals; and drinks and snacks seem to be around every corner at the breakout sessions. Add to that the posh customer/partner dinners and receptions held each night throughout the conference, and the always-stellar San Francisco dining scene. My advice to newcomers is to pack forgiving clothing, stay at a hotel with a decent gym, and indulge!
#2 The breakout sessions - For me, the breakouts are the raison d’être for attending Dreamforce. I always walk away from these sessions with new tools and insights, and ways to improve our ever-evolving CRM arsenal. This is where you really get to see how other companies are leveraging cloud computing, learn best practices, checkout the product roadmap, and start to think outside the box. After several years in the same field, I love the fact that there is always something new to learn at Dreamforce.
#1 ReadyTalk at the expo! – That’s right! ReadyTalk is heading for the AppExchange. We’ve developed an application that integrates Salesforce Leads and Contacts with our Conference Center. Stop by our booth at the expo (#513) and see a demo of our awesome new app for managing our webinars right within your Salesforce instance. No downloads, no spreadsheets, just clicks. And, be sure to pick up some of our cool ReadyTalk schwag while you’re there!
ReadyTalk is also hosting the Cloud Connection Party with Astadia. Want to join us for the rockin' party? Get an invite.
Susan is ReadyTalk's CRM administrator. She loves dreaming about food, traveling the world and new ways to customize Salesforce.com. She lives in Boulder with her husband, Todd. They are excitedly awaiting the arrival of their baby boy in February.