May the (Sales) Force be with You, Microsoft
By GENNA JOUDREY
If you haven’t heard the news, Salesforce officially named Microsoft Azure as its public cloud provider for their Marketing Cloud. The corporation feels that the integration between Salesforce Sales, Service Cloud, and Microsoft Teams will help customers scale and boost employee productivity. “In a world where every company is becoming a digital company, we want to enable every customer and partner to build experiences on our leading platforms,” said Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft. “By bringing together the power of Azure, Microsoft Teams, and Salesforce, our aim is to help businesses harness the power of the Microsoft Cloud to better serve customers.” I have summarized the facts about this deal below, including two technological provisions, Gartner’s thoughts on the matter, and what this might mean for the future.
To be honest, I never thought I would be writing about Salesforce. However, after researching more about this partnership, it makes total sense. On November 13th, Microsoft and Salesforce agreed to two important provisions that are significant in their deal.
1. The Salesforce Marketing Cloud
Salesforce’s main goal with their cloud is to create a seamless experience across every customer touchpoint. Marketers can get to know their clients, personalize marketing with Einstein, engage with them across multiple channels, and analyze campaign performance. Making the move to Azure will unlock new growth opportunities and allow Salesforce to expand globally. Microsoft predicts that this partnership will reduce customer onboarding times and increase data security. Prior to making this deal, the Sales and Marketing Clouds have been running on AWS, so this was a huge win for Microsoft.
2. Microsoft Teams Integration
The integration with Teams will enable Sales Cloud and Service Cloud users to search, view, and share Salesforce records directly within Teams. This will greatly increase productivity for users. Organizations are looking to bring in workflows and apps that allow for a collaborative environment, and that is exactly what Teams will bring to the table. This integration will be available in late 2020.
Salesforce’s integration with Azure now means that the company now has relationships with Microsoft, Amazon, and Google. A Research Director from Gartner wrote a blog post on her thoughts as to why Salesforce wants to run its software on all of these platforms. The four conclusions are as follows:
– Moving applications to the cloud will include cross-domain core customer processes, consumer–facing apps, and customer analytics.
– Working with cloud market leaders will speed up the geographical expansion for Salesforce.
– Customers and partners will receive multi-experience support.
– Productivity, analytics, and AI are all factors that encourage technology players to work together instead of against each other.
What Will the Future Hold?
Companies are already predicting that this move was a great one. Microsoft and Salesforce have some of the most well-known technology platforms out there, so why not combine to become an even larger entity? A few large corporations share their thoughts on how this partnership is beneficial.
“Marriot has more than 7,200 properties spanning 134 countries and territories, so driving efficiency and collaboration is critical,” said Brian King, global officer of digital, distribution, revenue strategy, and global sales at Marriot International. “The combination of Salesforce and Microsoft enables our teams to work better together to enhance the guest experience at every touchpoint.”
“With 400 brands and teams in 190 countries, we are always looking for ways to scale more efficiently and strengthen collaboration,” said Jane Moran, Chief Technology Advisor at Unilever, in a statement. “The powerful combination of Salesforce and Microsoft enables us to be more productive and connect with each other, and our customers like never before.”