My recent post on Salesforce.com’s acquisition of Jigsaw garnered a lot of comments. First of all, thanks for everyone joining the convo – I would love it if more people chimed in to every one of mine or Mitch’s posts to really make this a great hub for thinking out load about CRM, social media, cloud, etc.
I wanted to say a few more things – maybe clarify my points here. Again – in theory I think the concept behind Salesforce.com combined with Jigsaw’s cloud-based data service makes total sense. The ability to augment data sets, and the crowd-sourced notion of Jigsaw is very cool. It gives a CRM system another level of power – making it a more “living” system rather than a static or mildly stale data repository that sales reps hate using.
But…and this is a big but…Salesforce.com is a HUGE company, with a ton of different types of customers from all over the world, and across all industries. The issue with Jigsaw’s free and open data model (remember, they along with SugarCRM were part of the open data initiative) might mean that some of their operations may not exactly jibe with the privacy mandates of these geographies, industries, etc.
Now, that does not mean that Salesforce.com is doing something bad. The issue is, that Salesforce simply has to be very careful about how it leverages the complementary nature of its huge customer database, and the crowd-sourced data service of Jigsaw. What feeds which system, so to speak, could have huge consequences.
I can only assume a company of Salesforce.com’s size and stature has thought about this, and is developing controls and other methods of allowing those who do not wish to have their data added to the Jigsaw system to easily opt-out.
The issue here is choice – Salesforce.com HAS to offer choice in this manner. While choice is sometimes a privilege – here it is a must. And ultimately, I think that is the only potential snag in what on paper is an interesting value proposition – one we have long held and which resulted in our data Cloud Connectors.