What the New Salesforce–Google Partnership Means to Sales Productivity Metrics

A strategic partnership announcement occurred last month. Salesforce will now partner with Google – two heavyweights in the world of cloud computing. This announcement could leave a permanent impact in the cloud computing market, specifically within the business services software market. One area where I see this impact being most significant is in the measurement of sales productivity metrics.


The History of Cloud Computing

There are many people who don’t understand cloud computing, or who question its benefits. The reality is that while cloud computing may be somewhat of a recent term that entered our vocabulary about 10 years ago, it was an idea first conceived in the 1950s.

Those in the IT field are well versed in this phenomenon. As new concepts are first introduced, not all the technology is in place to achieve the vision. Then, over time the technology catches up. That is what happened with Cloud Computing.

According to a Time magazine article, back in the 1950s John McCarthy, the computer scientist who created the term “artificial intelligence,” first conceived the notion of “time-sharing” for computers – an early version of what we call “Cloud Computing” today. Back then computing time cost millions of dollars. As a result, few users could afford to purchase, so a time-sharing model was conceived.

Sixty years later, Internet access coupled with high-speed broadband services have made time-sharing computing as easy to access as opening a web browser. Smaller companies that couldn’t afford high-performance computing power or enterprise applications now have a way to better compete with larger, more well-funded enterprise organizations.


The Announcement

Salesforce and Google announced a new partnership where it was revealed that Google’s office software portfolio, “G Suite,” will be integrated into Salesforce’s core platform. This integration will, most importantly, include an integration of Google Analytics into Salesforce’s marketing software and a mutual commitment to use each other’s products moving forward.

Salesforce will use Google’s cloud infrastructure for “expansion” of its core services as part of the deal, a major win for Google as part of its ongoing challenge to Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Microsoft Azure for market share. But, Salesforce stands to benefit significantly as well, given the access to Google Analytics within its software, which could provide a major boost to the value of Salesforce’s marketing products moving forward.

salesforce marketing cloud

Those of us that have used Google Analytics know the power of the program, and can attest, this is a great thing! As a cloud-based application, Google continues to invest in their product, offering frequent new features and updates, which are often noticed upon logging into the program.


Digital Insights + CRM Customer Data = Smart Sales & Marketing

It should come as no surprise that the integration of Google Analytics with the Salesforce Marketing Cloud has been something that each company’s customers have been asking for quite some time. While Google offered APIs to integrate Google Analytics, it’s never opened up the product to such a deep integration before, according to Google Cloud president Tariq Shaukat (source).

By seamlessly integrating these applications, marketers should be able to combine data from website visits with customer profiles in Salesforce to unlock powerful, insightful marketing intelligence based more personalized sites and ads. While many of Salesforce’s marketing customers likely already use Google Analytics, the level of integration was not that good, at least not good enough to be a worthwhile pursuit.

This business model makes sense – it isn’t the first time a company sought to extract greater business intelligence about their market to generate value for their customers. The Industrial IoT is helping to unlock the same value proposition for manufacturers investing in new platform-based operations management solutions to achieve “smart” manufacturing.

The joining of Salesforce and Google will unlock “smart” sales and marketing for their customers. Data-driven decision support will undoubtedly drive greater sales performance and efficiency – uninformed decisions will be minimized, replaced with smart choices on how to best use one’s time. Potential benefits include empowering sales professionals to better choose what prospects to follow up with, to then best decide when it is time to engage in each of the various marketing activities that preclude a successful deal closing.


Ease of Use – The Final Component to Sales Productivity Metrics

Those who are active sales professionals understand that there is never enough time. What this means is that important decisions must be made on almost an hourly basis on how to make the most out of each day.

Successful sales organizations recognize their “top guns” or “hunters” achieve better results when they are left to pursue new opportunities and close deals. The last thing you want to do is add new reporting or manual data entry requirements to this group.

The Salesforce and Google partnership announcement could help ease data collection and input activities. With seamless integration available out-of-the-box, significant cost savings and productivity improvements are likely possible.

To start, new metrics might now be possible to measure – performance measurements not even considered possible, such as what is the optimal number of interactions before meeting a prospect at an event that will then most likely lead to a signed order? These types of interactions and sales closing activity can now be measured and tracked.

Another interesting component is visibility into what the right combination of pipeline generation marketing activities are best to optimize a sales pipeline of opportunities. With all this information now readily available in Salesforce, organizations will only be limited by the creativity of their sales and marketing leadership teams.

Similarly, the power of this sales and marketing intelligence will now be available to each of the other applications that are part of the Google G-Suite of applications. For example, a Prodoscore user that is identifying what sales activities are best to focus on now has a significantly higher quantity of attributes that can be measured and used to evaluate sales performance metrics with a new, much more comprehensive perspective.

Once again, the quest for more granular data leads to greater insights on sales performance metrics, and ultimately sales output. The only question is how to best use all this exciting new intelligence? Will you do something to change how your sales processes are performed? Or, will you be too busy and ignore it, thereby facing the perils of competing against companies that have a wealth of greater intelligence to support their process improvement initiatives.

I know what organization I want to be part of!

How will visibility impact your business?