Plenty of Chatter on Salesforce's Chatter

Ann All

Marc Benioff, you are so busted. Though the CEO is "waxing over Twitter" at the Dreamforce conference currently under way in San Francisco, tweets ZDNet blogger and Asuret CEO Michael Krigsman, he doesn't use it much himself. Benioff has only updated his account 25 times since joining Twitter in March and is only following 25 people. (Though he has a respectable 1,000-plus followers.)


He's not alone. I just wrote about a Weber Shandwick study that found Fortune 100 companies aren't effectively engaging their Twitter followers.


Benioff mentioned Twitter in announcing Salesforce Chatter which, as described on CNET, is kind of a cross between Facebook and Twitter. It integrates into both of those services. It also allows employees to create profiles to connect with coworkers, issue status updates, and subscribe to feeds from people -- and interestingly, from applications. People can also join groups to share updates and content.


There's plenty of comment on Twitter from folks attending Dreamforce. A sampling:


  • "Wonder what Facebook will think of this? Could Facebook go into competition on this, providing 'private' social networks?" From @SaaSEurope, David Bradshaw.
  • "Salesforce Chatter calling out Sharepoint 2010 - emphasizing bringing in other native apps. Also showing live tweets on SP hahaha." From @JuliaMak.
  • "Chatter icon looks like dentures. Anyone want some Super Poligrip with that?" From @rwang0, Altimeter Group's Ray Wang.
  • "Salesforce Dreamforce Keynote outlasts audience bladders, everyone is leaving during Benioff Chatter keynote." From @marksmithvr, Ventana Research's Mark Smith.
  • Also from Mark Smith: "Salesforce Chatter support all native apps so that you can link collaboration across Salesforce ecosystem."


Krigsman says Chatter will need three things to succeed: ability to filter noise,accessibility to non-Salesforce customers and great performance.


Though Benioff's keynote had plenty of critics, with many criticizing the length and the hyperbole, the Chatter demonstration shown to attendees won some fans. It apparently featured a Facebook group aimed at stopping SharePoint use.


The stream of tweets emanating from Dreamforce, which you can follow at #df09, is a great example of why Twitter use at business conferences is growing.

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