As the lines between marketing, sales and service demands continue to blur, businesses need new, smarter and more integrated ways to interact with customers from start to finish, according to
. Having already brought its Sales Cloud and Service Cloud offerings to its Lightning platform, customer relationship management giant Salesforce is now doing the same with the final piece of the puzzle: Marketing Cloud Lightning.
Unveiled Tuesday, Salesforce Marketing Cloud Lightning is designed to help companies streamline and unify their interactions with customers from the first point of contact to the final sale, with a wide range of tools for predictive data analysis, automated lead management, custom app development and more.
Salesforce also announced the coming release of Marketing Cloud for Google Customer Match. Developed through the company's partnership with Google, that offering will enable marketers to send targeted ads to prospects using Google Search and Google properties YouTube and Gmail.
Need To Integrate Customer Information Silos
Available now, Marketing Cloud Lightning extends Salesforce's existing use of Lightning for Sales Cloud and Service Cloud, both of which were released earlier this year. The addition of a marketing solution to the mix will allow sales and marketing professionals to provide a consistent user experience across the full spectrum of customer interactions, Salesforce said.
Berkshire Hathaway Travel Protection and Nestlé Waters North America have used Salesforce's Lightning platform and Lightning-enabled cloud software to communicate with customers across channels. Brad Rutta, vice president of marketing and communications for Berkshire Hathaway Travel Protection, said his company has been able to use the platform to better scale to meet customers' needs.
"As marketers seek to integrate multiple silos of customer information to provide personalized, connected experiences for customers, it's vital to have a platform that enables this in a smart, fast and connected way," Rebecca Wettemann, vice president of research for Nucleus Research, said in a statement released by Salesforce. She added that Marketing Cloud users have seen "significant" ROI while finding new ways to engage with customers on a one-to-one basis.
Enabling Predictive and Automated Interactions
Marketing Cloud Lightning enables users to analyze Salesforce data as well as data from across the Web to better predict customers' future behavior, Karalee Slayton, principal product marketing manager for Salesforce Marketing Cloud, wrote Tuesday in a blog post. The new offering also makes it possible to launch automated journeys for customers, she said.
"For example, if a customer clicks on a Facebook Lead Ad, which automatically populates the lead with the information the customer has shared with Facebook, that lead can then be routed to Salesforce where a more personalized journey can be triggered based on what is known about the customer," Slayton noted. "Similarly, if the customer indicates in a post purchase follow-up email survey that she's not satisfied, a case could be automatically opened, triggering a new journey."
In the latter half of 2016, Salesforce said it expects to expand Marketing Cloud Lightning's capabilities with the release of new Lightning Components, "reusable building blocks for assembling apps with drag-and-drop ease," according to Salesforce. Marketing Cloud for Google Customer Match is set to become available in July with the launch of Advertising Studio, an add-on to Marketing Cloud. The analytics-driven support for predictive customer journeys, meanwhile, is currently available in beta.
Image Credit: Screenshot of Salesforce Marketing Cloud (pictured above) via Salesforce.
Image credit: Salesforce.
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