SalesforceIQ Gathers Intelligence For Customers Big And Small

SalesforceIQ, which works with enterprises and small business, will gather information from email and other applications for sales guidance.

Charles Babcock, Editor at Large, Cloud

September 17, 2015

3 Min Read
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Salesforce has launched one of its first products with distinct versions for enterprises, which are already customers, and small businesses that frequently are not. It's called SalesforceIQ, and it's aimed at pulling sales-related information out of email, calendar, and marketing automation and using it to guide sales reps.

SalesforceIQ for the Sales Cloud is a mobile app that works with the main elements of the Salesforce platform. It includes a discovery process that can capture sales-related information out of email, and then assess who the sales rep is talking to, who is answering back, and who might be trying to talk to the sales rep without success.

The findings lead to intelligent prompts that call attention conversations where one party or the other is missing in some part of the loop.

SalesforceIQ for Small Business does something similar in its assessment of email, calendar, and marketing automation. However, it's a stand-alone product that can either work with Salesforce CRM applications or deliver information, conclusions, and prompts to the salesperson, even if there are no Salesforce CRM accounts at the company.

SalesforceIQ is one of the few Salesforce products designed with a capability to stand by itself as a solitary service inside a small business.

Salesforce based the IQ products on technology gained through its acquisition of Palo Alto, Calif.-based RelateIQ in July 2014 for $390 million. A CRM startup, RelateIQ designed a relationship intelligence product around its access to common applications, primarily email and calendar. It uses the information in them to draw conclusions on behalf of busy salespeople.

The software continually tries to assess the nature of the relationship between customers, prospects, and partners based on the content of the email exchanges going on, the marketing employed, and the amount of attention being applied to important customers as reflected in calendar activity. It is primed to seek out patterns that might offer indicators of future outcomes of pending deals. It can proactively recommend actions to build stronger relationships with customers.

Steve Loughlin, CEO of SalesforceIQ, said in the Sept. 15 announcement that companies were benefiting from a "massive influx in communication data, which creates powerful signals about the health and potential of business relationships. It also creates a lot of noise. With SalesforceIQ, companies can make sense of this data and pull out insights ..."

As a small business product, it's available by itself as a service for $25 per user, per month.

The version for larger companies, SalesforceIQ for Sales Cloud, is still in beta. It's available as part of the Salesforce desktop or as a free mobile Android, iOS, or Chrome application. It will become generally available early in 2016.

[Read about Salesforce is collecting IoT data for customers.]

Pricing will be announced upon its launch as generally available.

With SalesforceIQ for Sales Cloud, relationship intelligence is brought into the sales representative email processes, and becomes available for use, whether in the office or on the road. That includes the data relevant to a deal that's been captured by the applications of the Sales Cloud.

The goal is to provide sales reps with the context they need at the right time without the need to update systems or make manual data entries, said Adam Gross, COO of the Salesforce Heroku PaaS unit.

When it comes to keeping tabs on the sales rep's calendar, SalesforceIQ can find and read Microsoft Outlook, Microsoft's online Office365 Calendar, Google Calendar, and the Salesforce calendar, explained Gross in an interview.

"Other sources are being added all the time," he said, although there was no immediate roadmap regarding what applications would be added next.

About the Author(s)

Charles Babcock

Editor at Large, Cloud

Charles Babcock is an editor-at-large for InformationWeek and author of Management Strategies for the Cloud Revolution, a McGraw-Hill book. He is the former editor-in-chief of Digital News, former software editor of Computerworld and former technology editor of Interactive Week. He is a graduate of Syracuse University where he obtained a bachelor's degree in journalism. He joined the publication in 2003.

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