“Gamification” within Salesforce

ribbonI recently read an inspirational story about a real estate firm owner who grew her business exponentially through a simple challenge that she posed to her sales team.  The company was on a tight budget and the reward for highest monthly sales was a red ribbon. Though this may not seem like a great incentive, for one young realtor, this was an instant challenge and she stepped up to the plate. She won month after month and ultimately, the competition grew among her fellow realtors. The game was a success for the realty firm and the team closed larger and more sales.

A couple weeks later I came across a new app that automates “Gamification” within Salesforce.

So what is Gamification?
Gamification is the use of techniques technology to encourage participation among your employees, your clients or partners.  Gamification is grounded in the basic concepts that humans are encouraged and driven by competition and want to feel rewarded for their participation and “success.” Basically we are driven to play games and want red ribbons. Every business could take advantage of these concepts to increase participation, and as a salesperson, I love a good challenge.

winnerWith Gamification the game has evolved, and now – there is an app for that!
Bunchball, the leader in Gamification has automated and packaged Nitro for Salesforce, a Gamification app and it is AWESOME.  They even won Best New App for Salesforce.com AppQuest in 2011.

Your sales team works in your database all day long, and now they can see their game right within the Salesforce.

The app automatically calculates the score taking out the administration and legwork to determine the winners.  It includes dashboards for players that include: Leaderboards, Point accumulation and Prizes that can be redeemed, Reminders for Time remaining, and even Teaming where groups can combine their efforts compete against other groups.

The best part is the tool keeps your team engaged in the database.
As a Sales rep, you have to enter your activities to earn points. As you enter new opportunities, your points go up, your name and picture gets added to the leader board, and boom! you won a trip to Tahiti.

Check it out at http://www.bunchball.com/products/nitroforsalesforce

Give me a call if you would like more information about setting up Nitro for Salesforce.

By Jessica Tinordi, Jessica.Tinordi@lightindustries.com

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Using Salesforce.com Dataloader for simple data integrations

Setting up data integrations in Salesforce shouldn’t be hard to do…

sfdataloaderHere’s a winning trio that solves the challenge:  Salesforce.com, the Apex Data Loader and CLIq!

Salesforce administrators often need to import information from other sources or systems. If it is a simple import, you could get away with the Import wizard in Salesforce or you could use the Apex DataLoader wizard interface. But if you want to implement a repeating migration (aka an integration) you will need a more sophisticated method. There are tools in the AppExchange that cost money, but you can also use what is called the Command Line Interface of the free Apex DataLoader.

In stark contrast to the ease of using the Data Loader wizard, the command line interface is much more difficult to setup. Unless you are a fairly technical person you will likely need someone in your IT department to help you with it. Of course they are not always available on your schedule. This is where the free CLIq comes in to help. This tool creates a wizard like approach to setting up the files needed for the Data Loader Command Line interface to work. You simply install the Apex Data Loader on you PC. Then you download and unzip the CLIq tool. After a little bit of reading (or watching the video) you will be creating automatic integrations from CS files as well as SQL and ORACLE databases.

As you will see here, the ratings for this add-on are very good. When you are ready to get started, just visit the Google Code share page for the CLIq tool here.