The State of Salesforce '18 Report: Top Trends

October 6, 2017

Six years ago, we realized that not everyone using experiences the value of the world’s #1 CRM platform. So, Bluewolf, an IBM Company, launched a global survey and report—The State of Salesforce—to find out how the best companies use Salesforce to deliver the experiences their customers demand.

Today, The State of Salesforce report continues to provide insights and forward-looking opportunities for how sales, service, marketing, and IT can use Salesforce to their competitive advantage.

This year’s report is our biggest ever—a reflection of the landmark global strategic partnership between IBM and Salesforce—based on over 140,000 data points from more than 1,800 Salesforce customers.

AI Means Business Now

The anticipation that surrounds AI is driving a surge of early adoption and experimentation. Thirty-eight percent of Salesforce customers plan to invest in AI, and 77% of companies currently using AI plan to increase their investment in the next 12 months.

Marketers, for example, are realizing the advantage of enhancing their marketing technology stacks with AI in order to engage with the right person at the right time throughout the buying cycle with personalized campaigns.

CX goes mainstream

A strategic focus on customer experience (CX) is now table-stakes. In the digital business era, IT and business stakeholders are equally responsible for delivering valuable customer experiences. Organizations are optimizing their CX strategy with IT as a strategic partner to not only manage customer-facing tech but to transform it.

Organizations that designate Salesforce Platform responsibility to IT are three times more likely to report that their platform is optimized for innovation, able to use data to stay agile and relevant and integrate Salesforce Einstein and AI-powered apps into their Salesforce Clouds.

Analytics for everyone, if you have the data 

Employees need access to data that can help them make smarter decisions, faster. Over the next 12 months, 71% of organizations plan to increase their investment in making analytics actionable, because when employees have access to diagnostic, descriptive, and predictive customer data, they can meet customers where they are. Organizations that use Salesforce to manage campaigns are twice as likely to report that they have a 360-degree customer view, compared to organizations that don’t.

Organizations have more customer data than ever before, and today's challenge is knowing how to use that information to support employees, drive business and serve the customer.

Explore more insights and download the report. 

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