co-founder diginomica
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Benioff: ExactTarget Marketing Cloud will define our customers' future

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1st Sep 2013
co-founder diginomica
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Making the most of his company's ExactTarget acquisition is pretty near the top of Marc Benioff's to do list. 
As well it might be given that the Salesforce.com CEO has just credited ExactTarget for a useful boost in revenues in his firm's most recent quarter. 
Non-GAAP earnings for the quarter saw revenue of $957 million, up 31% year-over-year, while second-quarter profit rose to $76.6 million compared to a loss of $9.8 million.
"We doubled down on the Marketing Cloud this quarter with the acquisition of ExactTarget, the largest acquisition in our history," said Benioff. "We believe that ExactTarget, Marketing Cloud will define the future of marketing. It is a powerful one-to-one customer platform that makes it possible for companies to bring in customer data from any source and deliver highly personalised digital marketing to any customer across any channel.
"With the combination of ExactTarget, Radian6, Buddy Media and social.com, we have the platform of choice for CMOs with powerful and are power house in marketing across email, social, web, and mobile. And the Salesforce platform is the world's number one platform for developing enterprise Cloud apps and the only platform with built-in social and mobile capabilities right at the core."
He added: "I am extremely focused on the success of ExactTarget. I couldn't be more excited about this acquisition, about [ExactTarget CEO] Scott Dorsey, about the leadership team in Indianapolis and also the speed at which the acquisition and the integration is going and how it's going to impact our company and provide our customers the ability to connect with their customers in a whole new way."
While ExactTarget brings functional capability to the mix, Salesforce.com's global sales team brings a reach to that firm that was not there before, explained Benioff. 
"Our core salesforce is getting the key aspects of having that relationship where we are giving our core salesforce the ability to have a sale with ExactTarget is like a sales of any other of our other Clouds," he said. 
"I believe that's extremely important for us to be able to truly get the value out of ExactTarget, but there is no difference between selling the salesforce ExactTarget marketing Cloud, the sales Cloud, the service Cloud or the platform if you are a core Salesforce.com sales professional.
"We are also working very hard to expand the existing ExactTarget sales organisation which is something that's been rather boutique. I believe it has the opportunity to be expanded as well and give us the ability to have that tremendous core confidence and we are doing that by combining our existing marketing Cloud sales team with the ExactTarget sales team and having one unified marketing Cloud sales team."
Selling to the agencies
Marketing agencies - such as Omnicom and Publicis - are now key targets for those sales teams with Benioff going out of his way to praise them. "Those are two great organisations," he said. "You look at them, these leading marketing agencies, both as the leaders in those field [and] I have relationships with both of those CEOs. They are phenomenal executives, phenomenal companies.
"They have a phenomenal presence with these very large customers helping to articulate their strategy. They have grown really dramatically through acquisition. It's a strategy that both companies very much have deployed. I think they are probably at the end of that at this point.
"What our hope is, is that we are going to be able to partner with these marketing agencies to provide them with the technology necessary to enable their customers to connect with their customers in a whole new way. It doesn't take a very big leap to see that these agencies are phenomenal in so many areas. Coupled with our capabilities of delivering world class Cloud , social, and mobile solutions, we can really take their customers' capabilities to new level. 
"I view marketing as a huge growth area for Salesforce," he concluded. "It's one of the reasons we bought ExactTarget and many other companies as we positioned to be the number one player in marketing and you will continue to see us to focus on that effort. One of my top three priorities is making ExactTarget a major success for Salesforce.com."

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