Top 5 Ways to Get the Most out of Dreamforce

November 6, 2009 Appirio

Top 5 Ways to Get the Most out of the Cloud Computing Event of the Year

For the last several years, Dreamforce has been more than the salesforce.com event, it has been a reflection of the state of the cloud computing world. With new announcements, partnerships and information on salesforce.com’s sales cloud, service cloud and custom cloud solutions – not to mention meet-ups, dinners, events, and other gatherings – it can also be overwhelming. Last year, aside from salesforce.com, Appirio had more people at the event than any company (and proud to repeat that this year). As such, we wanted to pull together some tips on getting the most from the event. And even if you or your team are not coming to Dreamforce, we have some ideas on how you can gain from it. Here are our top 5 tips:

Number 5 – Treat the Keynotes Like a Must See Concert

Keynotes are where salesforce.com reveals all of their new announcements and shows the latest applications of those technologies (we had our work featured in two of the demonstrations in last year’s keynote). This year you can even come to the keynote for free. The keynotes have the feel of a technology rock concert / pep rally to change an industry. There will be an amazing video to open, Marc will cover salesforce.com’s momentum as a company, and then they will build to a thundering announcement(s). The Day 1 keynote will announce the biggest news, and then Day 2 makes the news concrete with more detail and fantastic demos. Unlike past years where Salesforce has pre-briefed the industry, we believe this year’s announcements will be a complete surprise. You can watch twitter for a rumbling real-time view of the keynote as it happens, or they have sometimes broadcast the event live (or with a short delay). And this year, Microsoft’s PDC is competing directly with Dreamforce, so expect some real fireworks.

Number 4 – Prepare for, keep track of, and reflect back on Dreamforce…. in the Cloud!

The main Dreamforce site contains a wealth of information on tracks / sessions and other events. By role and time, you can discover the best sessions for any area of interest. We are also excited to offer dreamforce.appirio.com for a couple of reasons: First, there are hundreds of sessions and events at Dreamforce, and it’s not possible to capture the all of it even when attending. Second, we wanted to help bring the creative energy of the ecosystem to help explain fundamental concepts like – what is cloud computing? All through the event we’ll capture images, interviews, reviews and videos from the event. This year online and live come together as the Dreamforce facebook page, twitter, chat and phone can all be connected to the live Service Cloud Call Center that will be operating out of the salesforce.com campground.

Number 3 – Go to sessions to get insight, and after hours events to create (business) relationships

300+ sessions at Dreamforce allow any level, function, or experience level to find a path through the event. One of the most unique parts about the event is the number of customers presenting the details of how they got value from a specific feature, function, module or initiative related to salesforce.com. These same experts, and many specialists from salesforce.com itself, are then wandering around the Expo hall, the Global Gala, numerous spontaneous evening events and of course, the exclusive Appirio event. (co-sponsored with salesforce.com and Google). Use these interactions to introduce yourself, ask questions, or just share experiences. We have had numerous customers meet at Dreamforce and stay in touch with their peers throughout the year.

Number 2 – Get Your Hands on Something

Dreamforce offers a volunteer opportunity with the foundation, deep pre-conference training, hand-on workshops, opportunities to get certified, an entire expo and salesforce campground, birds of a feather lunches, a force.com developer zone, and much much more. If you leave Dreamforce without actually “doing” anything, you’ve missed one of the joys of a cloud computing conference and the biggest difference between this event and any SAPPHIRE or Oracle OpenWorld you have been to.

Number 1 – Come See Appirio at Booth #616!

We do believe we have more experience with helping enterprises move to the cloud than anyone in the industry. More of our customers will be presenting at Dreamforce than any other Salesforce partner. We have been consistently first with real world applications using platform technologies like Apex and Visualforce, integrations to complementary clouds like Google, Amazon, and Facebook. We’ve built one of the largest scale SaaS ISV applications built 100% on force.com (Appirio PS Enterprise), and have similar experience building apps on Google and Amazon. We can help your business determine how to use salesforce.com, force.com, Google Apps and the broader cloud ecosystem to dramatically change how you think about technology and business. Come talk to us about how!

PS – If that’s not enough, check out our cloud computing video contest or pick up a great cloud t-shirt at our booth and wear it around the conference for a chance to and win $1000! (Keep your eyes peeled for clues on where we will be handing out prizes on Dreamforce Central)

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