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Marketing Cloud GPT, Data Cloud Updates, and the Future of Open AI from Connections 2023

Connections 2023 Recap: Marketing, Artificial Intelligence, Data Cloud

Salesforce Connections 2023 is the marketing and commerce learning event of the year for customer-first innovation. Each year, thousands of attendees from all across the Salesforce ecosystem gather to learn and network over the latest innovations and new products. 

Generative AI Makes its Salesforce Splash

This year’s Connections kicked off with a major announcement highlighting the new Marketing GPT and Commerce GPT solutions. These products are the latest generative AI offerings on the market, and Salesforce took great care in emphasizing the massive impact on our lives and careers large language models (LLMs) and Open AI will have on everyone in the Salesforce ecosystem.  

Marketing GPT will be able to automatically generate personalized emails, smarter audience segments, and marketing journeys.  Commerce GPT, on the other hand, will provide brands with the ability to deliver personalized shopping experiences and customized offers that adapt to customer needs using GPT-powered dynamic buying journeys. 

A major theme discussed by various Salesforce speakers and session hosts was that Open AI will both do more for us and also ask more from us. These new solutions will require savvy users to not only grow our skills to meet the capabilities of the tool but also assess processes and procedures that may have become too onerous.  

How to Leverage AI Effectively

From trimming the fat from your email and landing page production process to maximizing return across every marketing channel, Connections 2023 also featured a strong emphasis on having the fundamentals of running a strong program in place in order to take full advantage of the opportunities afforded by Open AI.  

Advice like shortening handoffs between departments to allow for better agility in marketing strategy and wielding scalpels, not sledgehammers, for our constituent outreach efforts seem obvious but are nonetheless a critical part of any marketing strategy and the key to program innovation and constituent engagement. 

Since the disruption of Open AI in our day-to-day working lives is fast approaching—if not here already—one could easily imagine the professional growth we will all have to undergo to take full advantage of Marketing Cloud. One could easily see a copywriter’s skillset evolving to include drafting AI prompts that generate the right personalization with the correct voice for each constituent on record. Personalization with Data Cloud was also featured heavily, with Connections speakers highlighting the solution’s ability to create engaging constituent experiences that are truly one-to-one across multichannel journeys, the web, and mobile apps. One of Cloud for Good’s key takeaways for modern marketers was to review, analyze, and prepare because marketing evolution will be swift and mature more rapidly due to the suite of possibilities opened by GPT and Open AI. 

Additional AI Use Cases

Salesforce did a great job framing up how Marketing GPT, Commerce GPT, and other generative AI solutions could be advantageous to marketers across the industry. The Connections keynote highlighted Rossignol (a skiing and outdoor sports lifestyle brand) and Formula 1 (an international racing league for open-wheel single-seater formula cars). While these industries are outside the realms Cloud for Good typically provides support for, there were definitely applicable use cases for our higher education and nonprofit clients.   

For example, how many of you have struggled to come up with another creative or unique way to say, “Please Donate!” Or “Don’t forget to submit your application!”? At some point, we start to run out of new and fresh ideas to convey these critical messages. Using Marketing GPT, users can task the solution with coming up with new subject lines for you that convey the message — all the while saving time, resources, and budget! If you love that, you might also love the ability for Marketing GPT to build out your full email or even to create your segment in partnership with Data Cloud. 

AI Best Practices 

Salesforce also recommended a key step in leveraging GPT for your Marketing efforts: “Vet it, Edit, and then Take Credit” was the company’s recurring mantra. It is extremely important to review the results that Marketing GPT provides to you and vet that it meets your organization’s branding and content standards. If it isn’t quite correct, it’s time to select the result, in our case, the subject line, that best meets your needs and edit the content to meet those standards and expectations.  

From there, you get to take credit for the amazing subject line you just came up with…or the email or segment you built! Before getting into heavy use of Marketing GPT, having a “Vet it, Edit, and then Take Credit” strategy will be key. Salesforce made it clear: Marketing GPT is not here to replace you or your job. It’s here to enhance and optimize your work. And for our clients in the nonprofit and higher education spaces, that should be music to their ears because it also means not having to hire another copywriter, segmentation specialist, or email builder when instead you can leverage Marketing GPT with human intervention from your team.  

At the end of the day, making your emails more engaging for your constituents and community members will allow your team to focus on tasks in need of their time, energy, and expertise. The future of AI is here, and it’s here to stay, so let’s embrace that change and leverage the tool to create greater positive change through technology. 

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