I can remember the first Dreamforce event in San Francisco. Elizabeth Pinkham organized the event and more than 300 people attended. That was nine years ago. Yesterday, more than 15,000 people streamed into the Moscone Center in San Francisco. The video below gives you an inside look at how it feels to walk into this huge, energy-filled convention hall, where 15,000 pairs of eyes wait to catch a glimpse of Marc Benioff, CEO and chairman of salesforce.com. I walked all the way to the front, and by chance I ran into Brett Queener, who was ready with his microphone and prepared to address the crowd.
- Energy: It is impossible not to feel energized by the excitement on attendee’s faces.
- Marc Benioff is a master showman and passionate presenter, a high-octane evangelist for the “Cloud 2.”
- The organized event is a model of customer-experience management. It took me fewer than 10 seconds to register for my press pass. My badge was printed – with my picture (downloaded from my Chatter profile) – within 20 seconds. No delay. Why can’t hotels use this amazing system?
- This is the first Dreamforce where Marc Benioff shared the stage with his top team, who did a terrific job presenting the new offerings. The stage was not a traditional square; it was round and offered Benioff the opportunity to walk down the aisles and personally address members of the audience. Nice touch.
- When Benioff brought in his partner, Parker Harris, the producers filmed Parker in the exhibit hall and projected his live feed onto giant screens in the conference. Traditionally, Parker and Marc have appeared on stage at the same time. In this instance, Marc carried on the dialogue by addressing the screen, while Parker shared live information from the exhibit floor.
All in all, it was a well-produced event. In the exhibit hall, one of the sponsors described his impressions of Benioff in this way: “He’s our locomotive; he is powering the gravy train, and we all benefit from his exceptional charisma.” Then with a wink, he said, “Plus, every day he sells 10,000 shares, which put $1.4 million dollars in his pocket. That’s $7 million a week. Don’t you love this country?”