Editor’s note: Salesforce puts an emphasis on intelligence to fuel its next wave of growth, says Technology Business Research Analyst Kelsey Mason.

HAMPTON, N.H. – Salesforce reinvents itself to serve the consumer generation

Though a market leader in public cloud applications, evidenced by the company nearing $2 billion in revenue for CY1Q16, Salesforce continues to innovate and reinvent its core products to align with evolving customer trends. On its CY1Q16 earnings call, Salesforce reiterated its commitment to serving what it calls the “consumer generation” — a group of people who want things fast, easy and are always mobile and always social. Recent developments around user experience with Salesforce Lightning and mobility with the launch of the Marketing Cloud mobile app show this commitment. However, Salesforce will once again reinvent itself over the next couple years to become increasingly intelligence-first, embedding predictive analytics, machine learning and artificial intelligence functionality into its portfolio. The integration of mobile, social and analytics capabilities with Salesforce’s core clouds, and the ability to vertically tailor these offerings, positions the portfolio as ideal for enabling enterprises’ digital business transformations.

Acquisitions help Salesforce quickly fold advanced analytics into its portfolio

Embedding analytics into Sales Cloud, Service Cloud and Marketing Cloud makes Salesforce’s portfolio stickier and empowers business users to do more on their own — without the help of a data scientist or business analyst. Starting with the acquisition of relationship intelligence vendor RelateIQ in 2014, Salesforce has been increasing its analytics functionality through acquisitions. RelateIQ became the basis for Salesforce’s newer SalesforceIQ offerings.

PredictionIO, developer of an open-source machine learning server, was acquired by Salesforce in February to improve the machine learning capabilities in SalesforceIQ. In April Salesforce acquired MetaMind, which specializes in machine-learning-based data processing. TBR expects MetaMind’s ability to use natural language processing to analyze the relationships between words will be embedded with Salesforce’s Service Cloud and Marketing Cloud, assisting with social media sentiment analysis. Lastly, in May Salesforce acquired Implisit Insights, which developed a solution to predict potential deals by analyzing sales teams’ correspondence with clients. The technology will be folded into Sales Cloud.

Salesforce drives customers’ cross-channel marketing initiatives

At Connections 2016 in May, Scott McCorkle, CEO of Salesforce’s Marketing Cloud, pointed out that “nothing has replaced anything, it only adds to it.” With this in mind, Salesforce remains committed to innovating around the old and the new. With regards to the “old,” Email Studio, launched at Connections 2016, provides tools such as predictive intelligence and enhanced automation. To keep up to date with newer technologies, Salesforce launched new features in its Mobile Studio, including predictive analytics. An omnichannel approach to Marketing Cloud enables Salesforce to displace competitors ranging from smaller marketing vendors such as Mail Chimp to enterprise-ready suites like Adobe Marketing Cloud.

Salesforce minimizes resource constraint challenges with drag-and-drop development in Government Cloud Lightning

As the private sector digitizes its services, customers have become accustomed to interacting in a more consumerized way. However, the public sector remains a laggard due to a variety of factors including budget constraints and compliance standards. Currently, the majority of government IT spending goes to maintaining legacy systems instead of investing in new technology.

To assist government agencies with modernizing their services, Salesforce released Government Cloud Lightning, which consumerizes the user experience. Platform adoption in the public sector lags that of other industries, according to TBR’s 2H15 Public Cloud Customer Research, as government agencies lack resources to hire the expertise internally and instead look to third parties to assist with custom app development. However, the drag-and-drop interface of Lightning App Builder enables government agencies to build custom apps without coding. Third-party resources will still be needed for integration with legacy systems.