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O Trailhead, myTrailhead! A reply…

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So Salesforce has just announced pricing for myTrailhead at $25/user/month but only as an add-on to a Salesforce Enterprise license so can come out on the pricy side. Keir Bowden has created a great blog all about myTrailhead, but for me, the pricing is (kinda) typical Salesforce, and I have some ideas why they have made the requirement for an Enterprise license too (although a guess).

Launching as an MVP

I’ve noticed that when Salesforce is launching something new themselves, they seem to typically launch the product as a minimum viable product (MVP). It makes a lot of sense, test the water and see if there is interest and if there is, chuck money and resources at it to build it out. I’m not saying myTrailhead is an MVP product (it’s been in the planning for a long time). BUT, by putting the price point high/barrier to entry high they are going to be reducing the number of customers that are going to purchase it, but for an MVP product, this is perfect. It limits the number of customers they are having to give support to and potentially juggling gaps in functionality while giving time to evolve the product to more than just an MVP.  The high price point also helps pay off the implementation costs. But who wouldn’t? increasing the price your customers pay and reducing the number of customers you have to juggle and support? a win-win.

External Objects aka Lightning Connect aka Salesforce Connect, when this was first launched I believe the price tag was around $200k. For some companies, the cost of implementing a similar integration could have been more so $200k is quite reasonable. Even when chatter was announced at the London “World Tour” many years ago I remember when the slide popped up stating that chatter was going to cost somewhere in the region of $50/mth/user (you could hear the jaws hitting the floor).

Why is it tied to an Enterprise license?

There are probably quite a few reasons but here are potentially two:

Technical

Firstly, it may have made it easier to build? technical limitation initially, without an enterprise license you potentially won’t have the API access to make myTrailhead test challenges work etc which could reduce the value of myTrailhead??

The Future license spend

But I think the main reason might be the long term view of the myTrailhead product, and that is it may get bundled into an Enterprise license in the future. Why give it away for free? Why is Trailhead free? The same reason, It comes down to Salesforce’s core Salesforce business of selling licenses. If you can educate the users to use their products more effectively they are going to sell more licenses but at the moment trailhead is very separate to the main platform. Could this converge in the future? I can see the benefit in license terms. If you can get a CPQ trail in front of a business user/influencer you could potentially sell the product by itself. This means bringing trailhead head closer to end users.

Learning should be free and open to all

I hope that Salesforce will see the power of Trailhead and actually see how myTrailhead could be a force for good in providing free learning for all and also a potential upside to license revenue growth, a win-win for all. But we’ll have to see.

One thing for sure… I can’t wait for my first project where I get to implement and create myTrailhead modules 🙂

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