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Marketing Featured Global

Salesforce announces layoff of hundreds of employees

Singapore – Global software company Salesforce has announced the layoff of hundreds of its employees, following plans to cut costs in their operations and harsh global economic conditions.

An initial report by Protocol noted that the company plans to lay off a large number of individuals, roughly 2,000 people or more, for ‘performance’ issues.

A spokesperson for Salesforce confirmed said news to CNBC, saying “Our sales performance process drives accountability. Unfortunately, that can lead to some leaving the business, and we support them through their transition.”

Salesforce previously underwent retrenchment in August 2020, and then in January this year while they implemented a ‘hiring freeze’.

The new Salesforce employee cutbacks come after its investors are increasingly demanding a greater return, with the majority of this investment being poured into growing its business by acquiring businesses such as Slack and Tableau.

Big Tech has been struggling to cope up with losses lately, with other tech companies such as Meta, Oracle, Twitter, Snap and Netflix announcing massive layoffs as well.

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Marketing Featured ANZ

Icon Agency appointed to handle Salesforce’s Australian communications programme

Australia – Australia-based integrated communications agency Icon Agency has been appointed by cloud-based software company Salesforce to manage its Australian communications for the global CRM leader in CRM.

The move will see Salesforce joining Icon’s expanding roster of global technology brands including ADP, Schneider Electric, and Luno. 

Salesforce said that it believes that business is the greatest platform for change and is committed to doing well and doing good, making the brand a seamless addition to Icon’s purpose-driven client base.

Joanne Painter, Icon Agency’s managing director, commented that they are thrilled to work with a value-led business, dedicated to trust, customer success, innovation, equality, and sustainability, and it’s a time of tremendous change and they need more innovators and change-makers to navigate significant headwinds.

“As a trusted digital adviser, Salesforce is perfectly placed to support the evolution of businesses to a more resilient, prosperous, and sustainable future. Salesforce is an ideal fit for Icon’s brand platform, ‘For people, with purpose’. We continue to cement our expertise in the tech sector to complement our existing strengths in healthcare, education and government Purpose is not just a lofty ideal. We’re committed to work that makes the world better, enabling us to rapidly expand whilst producing award-winning work. The results are clear: purposeful work works,” said Painter.

Just recently, Icon Agency appointed Simon Hobbs to step into its newly created role of executive director of digital. He will be leading Icon’s digital department with a focus on new business development and optimising the team’s processes and systems.

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Technology Featured Global

Temenos announces availability of Infinity Digital for Salesforce for enhanced customer engagement

Geneva, Switzerland – Banking software company Temenos has announced that Infinity Digital for Salesforce will be made available on their platform, which brings together the worlds of CRM, assisted channels, and digital channels onto a single platform. The solution will be available on Salesforce AppExchange, an enterprise cloud marketplace. 

Infinity Digital for Salesforce offers banks synchronisation between Salesforce Financial Services Cloud and the bank’s core banking systems. It helps banks achieve higher efficiency and streamlining of servicing, onboarding, and origination processes with better personalisation and greater customer experience.

This solution integrates Salesforce Financial Services Cloud with Temenos’ digital banking platform, giving customer-facing teams in banks a holistic view of their customers surfacing both customer engagement and transactional banking data across all channels and transactional systems. 

In addition, Infinity Digital for Salesforce enables banks to serve their customers with tailored offers made possible through relevant, complete, and accurate information at every interaction. Banks can integrate digital and assisted channels with their transactional system and create a unified platform across marketing, sales, servicing, and origination functions to give client-facing teams a complete and actionable view of customer interactions.

Max Chuard, chief executive officer at Temenos, said that they are excited to extend their leadership in digital by combining their open banking platform with Salesforce Financial Services Cloud in a single platform to help banks reinvent the customer and employee omnichannel experience.

“We are aiming to solve one of the most fundamental problems in banking today by connecting the worlds of CRM, transactional footprint and digital interactions. This go-to-market strategy will accelerate our penetration in the digital front office segment. We help banks with complex channel architectures by breaking down silos to reduce complexity and costs, and achieve customer-centric business transformation to provide outstanding customer experiences,” Chuard said.

Meanwhile, Eran Agrios, SVP and GM for financial services at Salesforce, commented, “We’re excited to see Temenos innovate with Salesforce Financial Services Cloud to help banks deepen their relationships with customers through hyper-personalised experiences. With Infinity Digital for Salesforce, customers can connect their core banking systems to their omnichannel experiences, delivering hyper-personalised experiences faster.”

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Technology Featured APAC

OSF Digital acquires Salesforce partner Datarati

Quebec, Canada — OSF Digital, a global provider of digital transformation service, announced the acquisition of Datarati, a Salesforce partner with expertise in Salesforce Marketing Cloud in Australia and New Zealand, and serves consumers across the Asia-Pacific region. 

Datarati, being one of the established marketing agencies with expertise in Salesforce in APAC, has helped in the digital transformations of companies in various industries namely retail & consumer goods, communications, media, financial services, insurance, and health care. 

The purchase of Datarati further bolsters OSF Digital as a global multi-cloud provider partner of Salesforce, whom they have partnered with for over 10 years delivering digital transformations across different areas of marketing and sales. The digital transformation firm continues to focus on increasing its capabilities as it intends to lead in the area of digital transformation. 

Gerard Szatvanyi, CEO of OSF Digital, commented on the acquisition, saying that as part of the company’s mission to be the leading global digital transformation partner to companies worldwide, the firm will continue to expand with other acquisitions of a Salesforce-focused services leader in the APAC region.

“With additional Marketing Cloud capability, capacity, and Performance Marketing expertise, we are equipped to continue exponential growth in the fast-growing APAC region and beyond,” Szatvanyi said.

Will Scully-Power, founder and CEO of Datarati, commented, “We’re excited to embark on this next phase of our rapid growth of Salesforce Marketing Cloud services and expansion of our Salesforce solutions across Australia, New Zealand, and the wider Asia-Pacific region. By coming together with the wider OSF Digital team, we will now have increased capacity and capability to support the demand from our customers to support their digital transformations.”

The buy-out is part of the global commerce company’s strategy to scale locally and regionally throughout different markets, as well as to increase its Salesforce Digital 360 capabilities. This is OSF Digital’s sixth acquisition in the past nine months, and its second acquisition of a Salesforce-focused services partner based in APAC.

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Technology Featured East Asia

Accenture to acquire Japan-based commerce CX agency Tambourine

Tokyo, Japan – Global professional services Accenture has announced that it will be acquiring Tambourine, a Japanese-based commerce customer experience (CX) agency. Said terms of the transaction were not disclosed as of this moment.

The company, founded in 2015, provides integrated commerce services on the Salesforce platform. It delivers customer experience design and engineering, develops web services and applications, and offers consultancy services to optimize customer touchpoints. 

Tambourine already has a proven track record in using Salesforce Commerce Cloud to deliver seamless commerce experiences for consumer goods and entertainment companies in Japan. 

Through the acquisition, Tambourine will enhance the world-class suite of sales and commerce transformation services, from product and platform engineering, to omnichannel delivery of commerce experiences. 

Speaking about the acquisition, Flaviano Faleiro, president for growth markets at Accenture Interactive, said, “Brands understand that when they respond to new consumer behaviors with a seamless commerce experience, it makes them more relevant and valuable. The combination of Tambourine and Accenture Interactive will further enhance our ability to leverage creativity, technology and deep human insights to accelerate growth of our clients.” 

Tambourine is the latest in a series of acquisitions that Accenture has made to rapidly scale commerce expertise and excellence, including Experity in Brazil, Glamit in Argentina and Openmind in Italy. In Asia, the company had also acquired Malaysia-based marketing consulting/agency Entropia.

Atsushi Egawa, Accenture’s market unit lead for Japan, said, “Digital customer experience and brand reputation is so closely intertwined that it can impact a company’s growth. In considering ways to deliver the best of commerce experiences, brands are turning to data and the cloud for leverage. By weaving in Tambourine’s unique offerings into Accenture’s, we will continue to help accelerate our clients’ growth.”

Meanwhile, Tatsuya Nakao, CEO of Tambourine, commented, “Tambourine is founded on the premise of achieving excellent outcomes as a team. Now, as part of Accenture, we look forward to extending our digital commerce expertise across the entire customer experience and work closely together to create [a] deep impact for our clients.”

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Technology Featured South Asia

Social Beat enters partnership with Salesforce for marketing automation

Mumbai, India – Local-based digital marketing solutions company Social Beat has announced that it has entered a new partnership with global customer relationship management (CRM) platform Salesforce in a bid to drive marketing automation and digital transformation for brands in the country.

Through the mandate, both will help leading brands in India take up marketing automation solutions to align their marketing and sales. In addition, the solution will help not only generate the best leads but also keep the leads engaged and connect with them at the right time to close more leads. 

Accordingly, Social Beat has been chosen as the implementation and setup partner for Salesforce in the country, hence Social Beat will also help Salesforce’s customers accelerate their productivity and make insightful decisions to garner more leads.

“We are really excited to be partnering with Salesforce to drive marketing automation projects with brands in India. We are confident about this partnership leading to accelerated growth in the domain of digital transformation & marketing automation for both of us,” said Suneil Chawla, co-founder of Social Beat.

With Salesforce’s marketing automation tool, a company’s sales and marketing can work hand-in-hand to manage the existing customers and also identify prospective ones. This tool also helps companies track their leads from click to close. Salesforce, with the help of Social Beat, will make sure companies can stay connected to the consumers through email, mobile and social networks. 

In addition, Social Beat. in its partnership with Salesforce, also has the opportunity to join more than 150,000 like-minded companies and find a massive community of experts and evangelists committed to the company’s growth.

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Technology Featured Southeast Asia

Globe secures stake in Salesforce’s partner Third Pillar for CRM solutions

Manila, Philippines – Philippine telecommunications company Globe announced that it has secured a 67% stake in business applications company Third Pillar, a partner of customer relationship management (CRM) company Salesforce.

The acquisition comes as the local telco giant targets an even more improved customer experience for its user base. Globe has shown its diversity in terms of mobile and data services, delivering access on global platforms such as Netflix, Viu, and Spotify. Furthermore, the telco industry has become a lifeline for most businesses by introducing connectivity, cloud, cybersecurity, and a host of other digital solutions befitting a remote work structure.

According to Peter Maquera, senior vice president for Globe Business, the partnership stems from their desire to give the telco’s enterprise customers a holistic experience, and at the same time playing a vital part in helping navigate through Salesforce and design processes that work for Globe.

Maquera admits that prior to utilizing Salesforce, they had no integrated view of customers, which were already at thousands. He mentioned that they were closing deals but not as fast as they hoped, and they didn’t have all of the information they needed to take immediate actions.

“Our collaboration with Third Pillar enabled us to use Salesforce in automating our B2B sales processes; enhancing workflows among teams, and expediting our turnaround time. With a 360-degree view of our customers, we’re able to identify where they are in the customer journey; extract more accurate forecasts and reports; improve pipeline management, and come up with faster, well-informed decisions,” Maquera explained.

He added, “In fact, after only a year into the partnership, we were able to log more than 8,000 opportunities; reduce neglected initiatives from 57 percent to 1.8 percent; diminish delayed projects from 53 percent to 1.1 percent, and decrease dwell time by 300 percent.”

Meanwhile, Maridol Ylanan, head of strategy and marketing for Globe myBusiness commented that through Third Pillar’s consulting services, combined with their background in telco, they were able to maximize Salesforce and configure it based on the telco’s needs.

“Implementing Salesforce wasn’t just about finding opportunities and closing transactions. The platform empowers us to start conversations with our customers and look out for their needs, no matter where they are in their journey. Now that we can leverage Third Pillar’s subject matter experts and industry specialists, coupled with our own experience in using Salesforce, we hope to empower more businesses to truly connect with their customers,” Ylanan stated.

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Technology Featured East Asia

Retailer Dairy Farm Group taps MuleSoft, Salesforce, and Tableau for digital transformation

Singapore – Pan-Asian retailer Dairy Farm Group is leveraging its digital transformation strategies by adding API platform Mulesoft, CRM company Salesforce and data software company Tableau to its digital strategy platform.

An initial step undertaken by the retailer is launching its digital rewards club called “yuu”, wherein partner brands and coalition partners are integrated into the yuu platform to allow customers access and redeem points all within a platform.

“With MuleSoft, we are able to connect different systems from multiple brands using an API-led approach to roll out new services in a reduced timeframe. With an omnichannel customer experience across all our brands, we can better manage each customer’s journey and their preferred communication channels with Salesforce Marketing Cloud,” Crystal Chan, IT director for Dairy Farm Group said.

Aside from the digital rewards launch, Daily Farm Group’s current digital transformation strategies focus on the aspect of improving project delivery speed. The retailer will utilize API technology to further improve point of sale (PoS) and e-commerce systems that will create synergy between its online and offline channels. Furthermore, the APIs can be also used to provide new customer experience strategies such as providing curated content, news, and promotions.

The yuu rewards club rolls out to key markets Hong Kong and Macau, where the retailer holds about over 10 household brands in more than 2,000 stores.

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Marketing Featured Southeast Asia

Unified customer data sources are top of mind for PH, SG marketers: study

San Francisco, USA – Marketers in both the Philippines and Singapore are understanding the importance of data-driven marketing, with unified customer data sources showing to be their top of mind, said a study by American cloud-based software company Salesforce. 

For Singaporean marketers, the merging of siloed customer data from different sources such as sales, survey information, web browsing analytics, emerged to be one of their top priorities, while Filipino marketers considered it as one of their challenges. 

Although Filipinos stated it as such, the study found that the median number of customer data sources used by them is only five in 2020, compared to Singaporeans which use a median number of 10 sources in the same year. Such count is expected to increase even more in 2021, with Filipinos expected to use a median number of six, while Singaporeans projected to increase their number of sources to 12. 

Marketers from both regions have also been shown to incorporate the use of AI in marketing efforts. For Filipinos, the increased focus on customer experience reflected on its intentions with AI, using it for improving customer segmentation, personalizing the overall customer journey, and resolving customer identity as well as for surfacing data insights. Meanwhile, Singapore marketers are almost in tandem with Filipinos, using AI for the same reasons, but with programmatic advertising and media buying as one of its intended purposes.

Finally, with success metrics, Filipino marketers are consistent in prioritizing customer satisfaction, stating it as their top measurement of effectiveness. This was followed by revenue and customer retention rates. For Singaporeans, on the other hand, marketing success meant increased revenue the most, followed by sales effectiveness, and customer retention rates as well as channel ROI. 

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Premium Marketing Featured Global

Navigating uncertainty with marketing measurement

When companies are operating outside of normalcy, it is more critical than ever for marketers to have a strong grasp on changing circumstances and the evolving demands and expectations of their customers and their businesses. To navigate through periods of uncertainty and beyond, marketers need to create a robust marketing measurement strategy– one that is shaped by data-driven decisions, in order to be able to understand their performance and pivot their marketing strategies if something isn’t quite working. Marketing intelligence is the key ingredient to an effective measurement strategy.  Through a single system of record, marketing intelligence platforms provide the insights and analytics needed to drive informed decisions. 

A recent study revealed that 65 percent of marketers face moderate to significant budget cuts as a result of disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. While many displayed cuts between 10 to 20 percent, some reported deeper cuts, especially in industries where demand has decreased. With budgets fluctuating, having visibility over marketing activities across all channels can help marketers see the efficiency and effectiveness of every dollar spent. A clear view across all moving parts enables marketers to consistently adapt and reevaluate goals.

Additionally, customers are dealing with disruptions to their day-to-day life, causing behaviors and expectations to shift. For example, the consumer goods industry has seen vast changes in shopping behavior first-hand. Customers are prioritizing purchasing necessities and home entertainment products. Categories such as food, beverage and tobacco, toys and games and sporting goods were in top five for growth in page views and order count. While, luggage and bags saw a 14 percent decrease in page views due to travel restrictions. To respond appropriately to these shifts and deliver engaging and helpful experiences to address changing preferences, it is important that marketing teams double-down on measuring tactics, messages and content across all touchpoints.

Here are four key steps to building a measurement strategy that can guide marketers through this volatile time and into the future: 

  1. Connect cross-channel data  

The modern-day marketer uses a number of different channels to connect with customers, making it complex to keep track of the effectiveness and performance of a single campaign. From Facebook to LinkedIn to Google ads, the sources are endless. The dispersion of marketing data across different touchpoints means it ends up both siloed and inaccessible. In today’s landscape, where marketing teams are challenged with fluctuating budgets combined with changing behaviors of customers, they need to be as efficient as possible with their time and ad dollars.

Harmonizing data into a single source of truth gives marketers a cohesive view of the information they have at hand. Cutting man-hours spent bringing data together can be achieved by automating the process. This enables marketers to spend less time organizing data and more valuable time on campaign analysis and optimization.

2. Set up consistent taxonomies and ensure data hygiene 

Organizing and standardizing data is a crucial step in order for marketers to gain actionable insight. This involves formulating rules and naming conventions to dictate campaigns and media buys.

When data is derived and categorized in the same solid foundation, it can be used more accurately and consistently. This is key to gaining data accuracy– something that 84% of marketers lack confidence in.  By having all stakeholders work from a set of standardized data, teams can seamlessly report and share findings, as well as scale insights to launch new initiatives.

3. Set goals and track progress 

Now more than ever, the marketing landscape is impacted by the disruptions taking place across economics, politics, public health and more. Marketers must act swiftly and be flexible in the way they respond to, plan for and adjust to this new environment. 

Marketers can use this time as an opportunity to reset goals and benchmarks. Setting goals builds accountability and urgency, and helps identify and monitor specific key performance indicators (KPIs) across channels, regions and business units. Benchmarks such as industry standards and competitive benchmarks are helpful ways of allowing teams to track how campaigns are progressing toward these goals. 

4. Align and collaborate across a single system of record

With organizations adopting remote working, marketers need to overcome the geographical silos and team silos to stay aligned.  With data connected and standardized across a single system of record, marketers can visualize goals and benchmarks through shareable dashboards. This enables internal and external stakeholders to collaborate and work toward shared goals.

Moreover, marketers should adapt visualizations to tell the right story based on the audience. For example, the chief marketing officer and the executive team may be more interested in key KPIs that impact the broader business, while channel marketers may require a closer look at each tactic or data, broken down day by day, across creative, messages and more.

By creating a marketing measurement strategy, marketers can arm themselves with the data and insights they need to help answer difficult questions and pave the path to certainty for their customers and their businesses. 

The author is Leah Pope, Chief Marketing Officer of Salesforce Datorama. Salesforce Datorama provides the leading cloud-based, AI-powered marketing intelligence and analytics platform for enterprises, agencies and publishers. 

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