Dreamforce First-Timer? 4 Things You Should Know.

5 min read

I have a confession to make: I’ve never attended Dreamforce. Fortunately, this year I’m finally going to make it to the premier industry event. If you’re like me and haven’t had the opportunity to attend in the past, you likely have a ton of questions. What should I do while I’m at DF? What’s the best use of my time? Where are the restrooms!? Let that initial wave of panic subside because we got you covered. While I haven’t been to Dreamforce myself, I’m lucky enough to be surrounded with longtime attendees. I mined them for ways to maximize the time and came up with these 4 things you should know before you make your way to Dreamforce 2017.

1. Make Connections

As the largest gathering of tech and business professionals from across hundreds of industries, there’s likely someone here for everyone. I’m not talking about love, but someone that may be of professional interest for you to talk to. One of the greatest things about Dreamforce is that you’re usually only a conversation away from connecting with someone in your field. And you never know who may need your expertise or even may have an answer to one of your own business challenges. It’s also a perfect opportunity to meet with those LinkedIn connections you never see IRL. The value of deepening professional relationships old and new is definitely near the top of the most useful things you can do at DF.

2. Thought Leaders, Thought Leaders Everywhere

Throw a rock at Dreamforce and you’ll hit a thought leader (please don’t throw any rocks). Questionable metaphors aside, thought leaders are plentiful at DF. And that’s not in any way a dismissal. What this means is that there are more chances to learn. There’s a lot of walking, talking knowledge presenting and on the show floor. It’s worth planning ahead to find the sessions, talks, and cocktail events that make sense for you to attend. There will be a lot of incredibly useful solutions at DF, but maybe none more valuable than the knowledge you’ll hear from an industry veteran. After all, a single insight could change the course of your career.

3. Wear Comfy Kicks

You know what two features of Dreamforce you’ll never see advertised on the event website? Standing and walking. You’ll be doing a lot of it. And if you’re working a booth you may even be doing some running for last minute supplies or swag. This movement is exacerbated by the fact that Dreamforce is set in multiple venues across San Francisco. Avoid regret and come prepared with broken in shoes, filled with lots of padding. Afterhour parties will leave plenty of opportunities to don your uncomfortable dancing shoes.  

4. Your Customers Will Be There

When Salesforce says everyone is going to be there, that includes your customers. If you’re in sales, that means book meetings now and get those fresh sales decks ready. Prospects are all heading to Dreamforce looking improve the services or products they offer. Be there to offer up the solution. The same goes for marketing and customer success roles. For the former, DF is an opportunity to validate assumptions about messaging and campaigns. For the latter, it's an excellent chance to follow up and make sure your customers are happy. Regardless of your role getting to know customers—or prospects—firsthand will only help. Hopefully, this info alleviates some of the first time jitters while giving you a clearer picture of how to make the most of Dreamforce 2017. See you in San Francisco! To learn how Xactly can incentivize the right behaviors, drive sales performance, and exceed revenue goals, meet with us at this year's Dreamforce!