Marc Benioff has managed to spit in Oracle’s eye using the very Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software his company develops and its paradigm to do so. John Furrier, founder of SiliconANGLE, sat in and broadcast the entire keynote on SiliconANGLE.tv.
After having his Oracle OpenWorld 2011 keynote speech essentially cancelled by Oracle, Benioff swiftly took charge—the switch of his keynote characterized by Oracle as having been moved due to conflicts with an oversold customer event. The speech had been moved by Oracle from Wednesday at 10:15am to Thursday at about 8:00am. In TV terms this would be more-or-less like changing a show from within the Prime Time slot to after midnight, as most conventioneers attending OOW would be heading for the airports on Thursday morning. The move worked to directly marginalize Benioff’s speech.
He since used Twitter, Facebook, and other social media to direct anyone interested in his keynote across the street to St. Regis AME restaurant at 10:30am.
TheCube made it into the press conference about the speech, which ran a little bit late. The press conference was attended by a large number of journalists and interested parties who filled the room and at least seventy to eighty chairs.
Benioff took the stage to joke about how Oracle cancelled his speech and moved him to a slot after the convention had ended.
He said that he believes that it’s time to move away from proprietary hardware and software and move into the cloud. He mentions that he thinks that his speech was cancelled because the cloud-world is not the world that Oracle wants.
During his speech, Benioff tied in the power of the cloud and social media to describe how useful it is to get things organized and done. He mentioned that without social technology like Twitter and Facebook, he might not have been able to so swiftly gotten this press conference called after Oracle cancelled his speech. He mentions that the world has been changing around everyone, shifting power away from individuals and corporations and into the hands of customers by way of what he calls “social power.”
Social power can translate into enterprise victories or defeats
Netflix itself suffered terribly at the hands of social power due to customers getting on board and hammering them about their poor communication during the price changes and splitting off their DVD division from their streaming division. Salesforce seeks to help corporations avoid this sort of damage by giving them tools to remain aware of how their customers relate to them.
Benioff thinks that companies like Salesforce.com exist on the vanguard edge of the newest revolution in computing which involves mobile technology, social technology, and altogether these are cloud technology. The social revolution has also managed to create a social divide—while almost everyone at the press conference raised their hand to say that they’d received information that the keynote moved on Twitter, there’s still quite a few companies who are not very social yet and they missed out.
He says that they used their very own social-mobile-cloud paradigm to get this event organized. His administration used their own products to organize, prepare, and even start printing up posters criticizing Oracle and touting the new event less than 24 hours before it would happen. The technology works effectively for large corporations as well as it does for swift and agile social relocation as it did in this case.
If Marc Benioff himself can take this software and the paradigm behind it to turn this drama into such a powerful win, customers will probably be imagining how they can leverage Salesforce services and technology to become part of that social revolution themselves.