Salesforce has been hammering the social enterprise message all day and will continue to do so for a long time. It’s a good message and it dovetails with the subscription economy as the one-two punch for new fangled company organization. That means everyone, not just new companies, but all companies will be attracted to social enterprise concepts like gravity pulls down a rock.
But one thing I haven’t seen in this discussion is a direct discussion of B2B social enterprises. Salesforce has done a lot around B2C and I suspect that B2B needs to follow on to B2C. If you think about it, there’s a certain logic to it. Companies buy into social ideas as ways to improve employee productivity. Next they’ll extend the productivity boost to partners and customers.
Salesforce introduced the social as something to be used inside to enterprise over the last two years. Today they targeted the end customer. Nonetheless there’s more work to do to link up vendors and customers in B2B situations and I think that’s an issue for the next couple of years. Some of the B2B solution will involve VoIP and chat. Salesforce started talking about chat today and that’s just an example of some of the things needed for B2B collaboration or social.
The thing about Dreamforce is that it ends up asking as many questions as it answers and truth be told it probably asks more. In those questions we see the makings of the next Dreamforce. Development in conjunction with experience will drive that next level of development. That’s what I know for now.
(Cross-posted @ Beagle Research, LLC.)