BACKGROUND: Google + Salesforce Integration
At its annual Dreamforce Conference in San Francisco this week, Salesforce announced a major partnership with Google to integrate software and cloud solutions from both companies. As part of the agreement, the two tech giants will be combining features from Google’s Analytics 360 Suite with Salesforce’s Marketing Cloud and Sales Cloud, uniting the popular marketing solutions used by many enterprise-level businesses.
In addition to the software integrations, Salesforce and Google are partnering to share services across companies. Salesforce declared that it would be moving to Google’s Cloud Platform and utilizing the G Suite of products within its company. Google also stated that it would continue to utilize Salesforce as its CRM software provider.
Salesforce has already launched a coupling of its Lightning tool with Google Sheets and Gmail, as well as Quip Live Apps for Google Drive and Google Calendar. Integration of Analytics 360 with Sales Cloud and Marketing Cloud is currently scheduled to begin within the first half of 2018.
GOOGLE AND SALESFORCE FORGE A STRATEGIC PARTNERSHIP
The union of both companies’ software-as-a-service (SaaS) solutions is unprecedented in the industry. Specifically, the integration of Salesforce and Google Analytics 360 promises to deliver unmatched visibility into the behavior of customers across brand experiences.
In its blog post announcing the partnership, Google cited four ready-to-use solutions that will combine Analytics 360 with Salesforce Sales Cloud and Salesforce Marketing Cloud:
- Sales data from Sales Cloud will be available in Analytics 360 for use in attribution, bid optimization, and audience creation
- Data from Analytics 360 will be visible in the Marketing Cloud reporting UI for a more complete understanding of campaign performance
- Audiences created in Analytics 360 will be available in Marketing Cloud for activation via direct marketing channels, including email and SMS
- Customer interactions from Marketing Cloud will be available in Analytics 360 for use in creating audience lists
To cement the partnership, Google is also offering eligible Salesforce customers one year of G Suite services for free.
USE CASES AND WHAT THIS MEANS FOR MARKETERS
With greater visibility into consumer behavior and marketing effectiveness, the combination of Salesforce and Analytics 360 has the potential to deliver more control and stronger attribution for marketers. The following hypothetical use cases may to help illustrate the potential value of combined data sources:
For B2C Marketers
Following the sale of a product, an organization may view Sales Cloud data in Analytics 360 to build a custom audience for DoubleClick and AdWords, promoting products for a follow-up purchase. Once this audience has been exposed to a paid message from the organization or revisited its website, Marketing Cloud can be leveraged to distribute a complementary offer via email or SMS. When the follow-up purchase is confirmed, the audience may be grouped again in Analytics 360 to repeat the process and/or to assign value to each touchpoint.
For B2B Marketers
Using customer data from the Sales Cloud, an organization may build a custom audience list of lookalike customers in Analytics 360 to target via Google media channels. After a lead has been confirmed from the lookalike list, the new potential customers may be sorted within Marketing Cloud to distribute key information related to the original paid message. Automation would then enable the organization to target numerous lookalike segments with varying messaging and determine the most efficient media mix leading to the final sale.
Enterprise organizations with Salesforce may want to consider upgrading to Google’s Analytics 360 Suite to take advantage of the combined services. Although Analytics 360 comes with a high price tag ($150,000 per year), sophisticated use of the platform in combination with Sales Cloud and Marketing Cloud could yield invaluable insight into the performance of marketing efforts and their impact on sales.
Before investing in the united tool suite, however, medium-to-large sized organizations should conduct a cost-benefit analysis to estimate the return of utilizing the premium services. Unless the insights gleaned from combining data sources will yield sales revenue and savings that exceed the tool cost – or provide high-value attribution learnings – the cost of utilizing the combined features may be prohibitive.
IMAGE SOURCE: Salesforce