Dreamforce 2012

Brain … drained …

Dreamforce was it’s usual crazy self this year.  Marketo was a Titanium sponsor so we had great space and neat perks.  For instance, we got great tickets to see the Red Hot Chili Peppers in San Francisco.  Great show.  In hindsight, I should have moved to the center of the stage, rather than off to the side.  Oh well, you win some, you lose some.

Picture gallery:

There is clearly a science to pulling off such a large conference and all of its nighttime party/activities. So many people doing so many different sorts of things can not be easy to manage.  Someone wisely said, “None of this happens by accident.”

At every booth, people set up different sorts of “enticements” to get passersby interested.  Two sales people in Super Hero, Booth “Talent” in revealing evening dresses, beach costumes, animal costumes, Japanese Kimonos and much, much more.  It was a cornucopia of attention grabbing.  “Please listen to my spiel about how great this product is.  Win a prize!”  I wonder what kind of testing has been done of the effectiveness of these ploys.

Dreamforce is a strange conference.  On the one hand, it is a product that people use.  On the other hand, it is a platform that many companies have built their own revenue streams on.  Sort of like if there was a generic “Microsoft” conference that people attended to see the games you could install in Windows.  It attracts an awful lot of people from all different walks of life.

I wish I could meet the equivalent of a UX Designer for conferences.  I’d love to hear the wisdom he has accumulated over the years.

2 replies on “Dreamforce 2012”

Titanium Sponsorship! (Well, Titanium is far less valuable than Gold, Diamonds, Platinum, or Silver, but that is another story). The sponsorship prospectus doesn’t even say how much Titanium Sponsorship is, but it is at least $500,000 (that is the cost of the next level down). Sure, it is marketing, and the Chili Peppers are cool, but that sounds excessive to me. I wonder how employees and investors feel about that. Are they proud to be listed next to Google? Would they rather see the money used somewhere else? Do they see the big picture. Did sponsorship lead to more revenue or is it just for show.

As for the first ever UX world conference, make it happen. Burning Man started with some friends on the beech. Although you might have to get some sponsors. The levels could be Antimatter, Californium 252, or Taaffeite (http://www.businessinsider.com/most-valuable-substances-by-weight-2011-11?op=1)

We actually do a ton of analytics on the event, plus all of the parties in terms of how many prospects, leads, opportunities and closed/won deals (revenue). In the end, there is a terrific ROI (Return-On-Investment) for us. We know how much money we spent and how much incremental revenue we will make in the next year because of Dreamforce.

By the way, the tool we use to do all of this analyzing…it’s Marketo.

Regarding the elements, yes, fine, I will send Salesforce an email explaining their error.

Whatya think?