Last week, Salesforce.org organised an event called the Connected Non Profit Conference. It was a small, sell-out event. In the spirit of it all being about connected non-profits, we find some C words to describe what we found at the event
Every year, Salesforce organises Dreamforce, a beastie of a conference in San Francisco where basically a whole city-load of people all turn up and hear what’s happening with the Salesforce platform. It sounds like a lot of fun but it is a long way away and pretty expensive to get to, especially for those on a non-profit budget.
A Mini-Dreamforce, 1-day World Tour event happens every year in London (May 18th 2017 – mark your diaries) that takes some of the content and positions it for just a day. Other stuff happens that is brand specific.
These are all lovely. They’re useful. They’re exciting. They’re a great place to meet really interesting and inspiring people. But they’re not focused on non-profit, they are focused on the entirety of the Salesforce world. True, all the learning and new products and innovations are relevant as they are available to non-profits. But the language is just, well, not us.
So kudos to the team at Salesforce.org in London for recognising this and putting something on just for us. I think the size was just right for a first one – small, about 300 or so. We can only grow from here!
The stories at the event focused on – as you would entirely expect – how Salesforce has driven non-profit success. From hearing about the new Non Profit Success Pack (Salesforce, distilled down for non-profits) and its roadmap (the new features that Salesforce will add, alongside the other features that may be unlocked via the Salesforce releases 3 x per year or the fortnightly (yes fortnightly) pushes to the NPSP), through to compelling stories and case studies.
We talked data (of course) and saw how Wave Analytics brings data to life and helps charities like RED to tell their story. How with the help of partners, charities have created new functionality to deliver things like Gift Aid or bespoke programme management, how UNHCR use Salesforce to manage their fundraising programmes and more about email marketing and the connectivity.
This is the story of RED – their goals and how Salesforce is supporting them to deliver their goal.
This video makes me cry but fills me with so much hope.
Of course, it’s money that makes a difference but you can’t mobile, measure and deliver – or start to raise those funds – without the right tech. Message clearly received there!
The measure of success of any event has to be two things – the quality of the content you hear and learn about, and the quality of the conversation you have with other people who are there.
One of the great things about this being a small and focused event was the ability to get to speak to so many of the people who were at the event.
Some were already Salesforce customers, some people looking at options on the market and there were a few of us partners around – and while the reality is we are ‘competitors’, we’re actually quite nice people and feel that we’re more part of a ‘community’ too if you see what I mean.
So there was lots of buzz and conversation, some free advice being bandied backwards and forwards and a lot of entente-cordiale.
And then there’s Cody
Cody is the name of the bear that features across all of the new visual identity Salesforce are adopting. It relates to trailhead – the free learning paths offered by Salesforce to get users to adopt the system. If I am honest, I am not convinced about Cody and campgrounds, but he keeps good company with other mascots so at least it keeps things interesting wondering who might show up next!
If you see another Connected Non Profit event pop up in our social feed, or via Salesforce.org, I urge you to act quickly to register. This one was well worth attending.
Related Services from Purple Vision
To coincide with CNPC_16, Purple Vision launched two new services
- NPSP QuickStart – for small charities who want to get started with the basics of Salesforce, fast
- Gift Aid for NPSP – for charities using NPSP and wanting to claim Gift Aid.