Although Customer 360 will eventually become the connective tissue for brands using multiple Salesforce clouds or products, Stutz said, the initial use cases will center on marketing.
Having a central customer identity set to use with Salesforce will help the marketing team “go from recommending things to customers to anticipating needs,” said e.l.f. Cosmetics CMO Kory Marchisotto.
Customers who buy particular types of products, such as for oily or dry skin, or who have different buying patterns – some people are loyal to specific products, for example, while others prefer to constantly test new ones – expect the brand to learn from their shopping history and cater to them specifically, Marchisotto said.
For that reason, Salesforce identity data is the core of its new CDP product, Stutz said. It’s also why Salesforce’s newly launched CDP inherited its name, Customer 360, from the company’s identity graph solution.
Putting aside Adobe’s and Oracle’s respective CDP ventures, most other CDPs are startup point solutions that need to send customer data to external onboarding and identity tech services in order to turn the data into audience segments and IDs for online targeting, Stutz said.
Salesforce sees a chance to collapse that process into a single package, thus avoiding the data loss that can occur when a brand passes data through other third-party providers.
Integrating its internal product suites is also an important way for Salesforce to keep startup point solutions from growing into significant market share threats.
Now that e.l.f. Cosmetics works more holistically with Salesforce – e.l.f. now uses Salesforce’s service, marketing and commerce clouds – Marchisotto said the brand has been able consolidate its mar tech vendor roster. Although e.l.f. still uses outside customer analytics tech, such as Dynamic Yield and Custora, the increasing interconnectedness of the Salesforce clouds allows the brand to eliminate the friction of working with other third-party services, she said.
For its part, Salesforce is open to integrating with more partners, Stutz said, including other major cloud providers, namely Adobe and Oracle. “In enterprise tech you have to coexist with everybody because it’s a homogeneous environment, whether you like it or not,” he said.
But Salesforce is also only getting started in its consolidation efforts, which could have major ramifications for the crowded market of smaller players and point solutions.
The eventual end state for Salesforce is a single, holistic Salesforce Cloud, Stutz said, as many different kinds of customer data technologies, such as CRMs, DMPs, tag managers and mobile marketing companies converge to create profile-based identity solutions.
“That’s what Customer 360 is at the end of the day,” he said. “It becomes the Salesforce Cloud.”