A CMO’s Dreamforce 2015 session hotlist

I Dream of Dreamforce.

Dreamforce 2015 is almost here, and if you’re like me I’m sure you’re also in frenzy as you try to get your schedule in order to be a part of the most fascinating sessions Dreamforce has to offer. I took a deep dive into the sessions and picked out 12 that I will definitely be attending. If you are interested in improving demand generation and learning about the  latest and greatest processes and technology then this list is for you. More specifically, this list is based off what I and many others in the business world consider the biggest challenges facing a company today:

  • Finding the right people
  • Sending them the right message
  • Nurturing them into happy customers

Did one of your Dreamforce Favorites make my Top 12?

1. Predictive Intelligence 101: Personalize Content for Customers Journey

Tuesday, September 15, 8:30 – 10:30

Linda Erickson


I’m starting out Dreamforce early and with a session that establishes the paradigm shift that is effecting all business’s marketing and sales tactics – the switch from business to customer control over the buying process. Linda Erickson is a knowledgeable member of the Salesforce team and will address the need to incorporate personalization into marketing and sales efforts in order to counteract this shift.  This session establishes a solid foundation on how marketing and business overall must change tactics to continue to capture leads. I’m looking forward to seeing her views on the issues and how she suggests businesses change their strategy.

Unfortunately, I won’t have time to stay around and chat because I’ll have sprint to my second session of the day.

2. Innovation Recruiting Strategies: Advocacy Marketing and Mass Personalization

Tuesday, September 15, 10:30 – 10:50

Steve Neiheisel

VP of Enrollment Management and Student Services

Northern Michigan University

Trisha Winter (That’s me)



This session joined my top 12 not because I’m one of the speakers but because of Steve Neiheisel. Steve Neiheisel is on the cutting edge of higher education recruitment strategies and comprehends the need for changing tactics that reflect the changing and challenging recruitment environment of higher education. Steve understands that advocates, social media, and personalization in marketing are needed to succeed more than ever before. Even if I wasn’t a speaker I’d turnout just to hear about Northern Michigan University’s innovative new recruiting programs. Having knowledge of the content I can definitely say that their approach is applicable to companies as well.

3.  4 Steps to Turn Your Customer Feedback Into Action

Tuesday, September 15, 2:00 – 2:40

Brent Chudoba


Many marketers and sales teams have become obsessed with customers, and more specifically customer feedback. What first caught my attention about this session was its claim of taking feedback and translating it to action. While customer feedback is always appreciated, you can never take all customer feedback and implement it otherwise you would be changing your product 10 times a day. This session intrigues me and I look forward to hearing Brent’s advice.

The one aspect of this session I regret is its timing. Number four on my hotlist appears at the same time as this session and after much research no time travel device, cloning process, or pleading with Dreamforce to change the time will work. But I refuse to take either off my list.

4. Advanced Tips for Lead Nurturing: Resurrect your Dormant Leads

Tuesday, September 15, 2:00 – 2:40

Matthew Sweezey


I’m hoping for some good ideas from this session. Every business wants a way to heat up leads that have gone cold, but the whole practice of nurture seems to be changing both with new technology and just a change in prospect behavior. There are a multitude of schools of thought on how best to nurture a lead.  And recently, lead nurturing has gone through excessive changes that have spurred marketers and sales to address leads with personalization at the forefront.  I plan on absorbing Matthew’s session like a sponge.

5. Gartner Predicts: Three Trends in B2B Sales Enablement and Performance

Wednesday, September 16, 9:00 – 9:40

Ann Chen


 Ted Travis

Director of Research


Gartner is a renowned research firm and I’m interested to see their projected key trends. Many new trends that work toward enabling and improving the performance of sales are always advantageous to discuss with your team to see if they can be applied to improving your business. I’m hoping that Gartner will further emphasize the importance of personalization for sales and marketing’s digital future.

Unfortunately, I’ll have to pull myself away early to get to my next session.

6. Big Deals and High Heels: Why Women Are Naturals at Selling  

Wednesday, September 16, 9:30 – 10:10

Joanne Black


No More Cold Calling

Barry Trailer

Managing Partner

CSO Insights

This session combines two things I’m passionate about – Joanne Black and empowering women. While throughout history women have been primarily nurturers, we have come into our own in the 21st century. But current marketing and sales strategies need nurturers to build relationships and incorporate a personalized approach to feed a business’s success. And who better to do that but women? I bet many of you remember the old saying men are from Mars and woman are from Venus. That saying has much to do with the fact that men and women communicating differently. I’m delighted to see how Joanne explores the need to incorporate women’s distinct communication into the business world.

7. Forrester: Transform Your Customer Service For The Age Of The Customer 

Wednesday, September 16, 11:00 – 11:40

Ian Jacobs

Senior Analyst


This session is another one that focuses on customer obsession based off the paradigm shift that has the customers controlling the buying process over the business. No longer do we tell the customer what to buy, but the customer tells us and it is our job to listen through different channels in order to fulfill their needs. I’m enthusiastic to see how Forrester recommends we measure a successful business to customer interaction and see if it can be applied to our current business practices.

8. How Smart Brands Use Digital Marketing to Acquire, Engage, & Retain Customers

Wednesday, September 16, 12:00 – 12:40

Joel Book


Joel’s session acknowledges the necessity of personalizing, automating, and engaging customer relationships. With these strategies and resources we can focus on sending the right message to the right person at the right time in order to find and retain leads. I agree wholeheartedly with Joel and I’m eager to view a few of his many examples of a success digital marketing strategy.

9. Women’s Leadership Summit: A View from the Top, CEOs Panel

Thursday, September 17, 9:00 – 10:00

Leah Busque

Founder & CEO

Tas Rabbit

Katrina Lake

Founder & CEO


Women empowerment in the workforce is always a topic I’m pleased to see come up at large conferences. Not long ago women were largely confined to a handful of industries and today it is still highly challenging for women to rise to a top role in companies. I’m elated that these women were able to accomplish it. I eagerly look forward to hearing their unique and inspiring stories.

But just like Tuesday morning I’ll have to wear my running shoes to get to the next session on time. It’s worth it though.

10. Disruptive Growth & Customer Experience Excellence in Communications

Thursday, September 17, 10:00 – 10:40

Andrew Baer


Albert Calcagno



I have to admit that I’m a bit of a cynic when I hear marketing terms like “disruptive growth”, but the fact that this is a case study has my attention. Hopefully, this seminar will give me a deeper understand of the disruptive growth achieved by Fastweb and the tools and strategies that are being implemented to replicate their success.

11. Women’s Leadership Summit: Building the STEM Pipeline 

Thursday, September 17, 12:30 – 1:30

Mary Moloney



Lyndsey Scott

Actress, Model, App Developer

This session is one that I’m extremely passionate about. Unlike many marketers, my undergraduate degree was not in the communication or marketing field, instead I graduated with a degree in Engineering. STEM or Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics tries to bridge the gender gap between girls and fields that are primarily dominated and perceived as male. I now have two daughters of my own and instill in them the knowledge that they can be anything as long as they work at it. STEM programs are great to inspire young women to reach beyond gender and become successful leaders of tomorrow. I believe that this session is worth everyone’s time.

12. The What, Why And How of Customer Obsession

Thursday, September 17, 3:30-4:30

Julie Ask

Vice President, Principal Analyst

Forest Research

George Colony


This third session on customer obsession further demonstrates how the shift in customer business relationships are shaking up the business world. I’m looking forward to seeing how Forrester believes that this seismic shift has and will change our business models.

Here finishes my hotlist for Dreamforce 2015. Ping me on Twitter @TrishaWinter if you’ve found a great session I should add to my list. If you are a marketer with similar interests to this list, let’s arrange to meet. I look forward to seeing everyone there!

What is advocacy marketing?

Selling is hard! Tracking referrals in Salesforce is easy

I have a confession to make: I don’t always like sales people.  But over time, I have come to realize that being successful in sales is hard.  I’ve seen it firsthand, through all the times that I have curtly ended a phone conversation (while wishing I hadn’t picked up in the first place).  And all the times I’ve chosen to ignore a prospecting email that arrived in my inbox.   These poor sales reps were doing their job – digging and searching for leads anywhere they could, trying to grow their business. There are stats and benchmarks out there about how many contacts you need to make on average to get a single qualified lead.  I don’t know those numbers by heart, but I can tell you one thing – it’s enough to make sales prospecting a very tough job.

Help your salespeople out

That’s why organizations are always looking for the best possible tools and resources for lead generation.  At Amplifinity we have built our success on the proven value of referral leads, which are cost effective to acquire, close at a higher rate than other leads, and turn into clients that have a higher lifetime value.

But while referral automation programs are often thought of as the purview of the marketing department, the most effective referral programs also leverage the strong relationships that individual sales reps have with their customers.  The most effective programs enable reps to directly ask for referrals in the field, while ensuring that these referrals are a part of the company-wide referral program so that advocates will be rewarded properly and quickly for their successful referrals.

Tracking referrals in Salesforce

Amplifinity’s platform offers a range of useful tools for sales reps.  For Salesforce.com users, tracking referrals in Salesforce is easy! Our platform enables reps to invite their contacts to participate in the referral program with just a single click  In other cases, we’ve configured our system to enable reps with tools such as emails, printed materials, and social media posts to recruit new advocates.  And most importantly, reps can register someone for the referral program and enter a lead on their behalf on the fly, as they are talking to a customer.

While I might not always want to admit it, achieving success as a sales rep is hard work.  Amplifinity’s referral automation software can make it so much easier, and we can all dream of the day that sales reps can spend their time following up on high value referral leads, rather than cold calling the rest of us.

Want to further the discussion? Email me at jvanhaaften@amplifinity.com

What is brand advocacy?





RingCentral chooses Amplifinity to automate referral program

RingCentral will work with Amplifinity to increase customer and prospect engagement while also increasing demand generation quality and quantity.

ANN ARBOR, Mich. July 19, 2015 — Amplifinity, the global leader in technology-driven referral automation software, announced today that RingCentral, a leading provider of cloud business communications solutions, have chosen the Amplifinity platform to build, automate, and manage their customer referral program.

Before deciding to work with Amplifinity, RingCentral had a successful in-house, self-built referral program, but needed to evolve the automation, integration, and scaling needs as the company grew. Extensive academic research shows that referred customers are more profitable, more loyal, and have a lower acquisition cost paired with higher lifetime value. The marketing team at RingCentral wanted to implement a fully automated and integrated referral system in order to increase customer and prospect engagement while also increasing demand generation quality and quantity.

Amplifinity’s referral automation software allows its customers to accurately manage rewards, market to their advocate base, close the sales loop, drive testimonials, share new products and quantify the full value of referrals to their business. These programs result in measurable increases in leads, customer loyalty and new customer acquisition, creating a powerful sales and marketing channel. Moreover, Amplifinity fully integrates with common SaaS platforms, including Salesforce and Marketo.

“Amplifinity brings automation, and ease to a referral program we’ve been running for years,” said Mark Brier, Director of Upsell and Referral Marketing at RingCentral.  “While our program was successful before, Amplifinity has increased our effectiveness and efficiency by solving a lot of small, nagging problems. Now we can focus on making referrals an important part of the growth here at RingCentral.”

How referrals increase your sales


“RingCentral is a high-growth and incredibly savvy SaaS firm, and so they have high expectations of functionality, ease of implementation, reliability, and effectiveness,” said Larry Angeli, CEO of Amplifinity. “We’re pleased we’re able to deliver on all fronts so we can help referrals play a bigger role in increasing sales in 2015 and beyond.”


About Amplifinity

Amplifinity’s referral amplification software turns customer, employee and partner advocacy into revenue. Our platform provides complete referral tracking and management with 100% accuracy so none are missed. Enterprises like ADP and DirecTV trust Amplifinity to enable high-quality acquisition while providing an engaging, fully-branded experience for their advocates. www.Amplifinity.com


B2B referral programs have evolved – So should we

Amplifinity’ CMO, Trisha Winter was recently featured in Medium, a Salesforce blog talking about the evolution of B2B referral programs.

Tell a modern B2B marketer that referrals are the most effective, strategic, lucrative method of demand generation available in their toolbox, and they know it’s true, but they also think it’s kind of old-school, and not in a good way. It lacks the sizzle that gets them, their CEOs, and their executive teams excited.

But referral platforms for B2Bs have come a long way. There’s been a dramatic digital evolution happening under our noses. As marketers, we now have the experience, technology, and creativity to create state-of -the-art, modern referral programs that increase customer and prospect engagement while also increasing demand generation quality and sales. (Read More)