The Ultimate Dreamforce Survival Guide
The world’s largest technology convention is nearly upon us. Are you ready?
With more than 2,700 expert-led breakout sessions and keynotes by some of the most lauded thought leaders, Dreamforce 2018 is unlike any other technology conference. It’s the product of a full year of planning. It draws guests, speakers, and pioneers from every industry.
Dreamforce is precisely what the name implies: it’s a force. Over 170,000 people will soon descend on San Francisco for the annual show.
Chock-full of learning and networking opportunities, Dreamforce is the most anticipated event for many industry professionals. That’s why preparation is so essential.
Don’t worry if you haven’t had time to consider logistics — we’ve got you covered with this Dreamforce survival guide.
All about Dreamforce: The biggest tech conference in the world
Dreamforce is Salesforce’s main annual event. It gathers the entire Salesforce community, including customers, partners, employees, and other key stakeholders.
The conference focuses on learning and innovation. It’s breakout sessions and keynote speakers provide tailored content that addresses the challenges of every role, in every industry.
In addition to attending sessions, attendees have the option of enrolling in various pre-conference certification and bootcamps. These added learning opportunities are crash courses focused on upping Salesforce administrator skills, architect-related design capabilities, coding, application development, and more.
Here are some more basics about the conference.
Dreamforce takes place Sept. 25 through the 28.
The Dreamforce campus encompasses multiple venues in downtown San Francisco, including the Moscone Center, Marriott Marquis, InterContinental, Palace Hotel, Hilton Union Square, Park Central, and Westin St. Francis.
How do I get around?
The hosts will provide shuttle buses to transport you between Dreamforce hotels and campus venues, but they will not offer airport shuttles. You can also take public transit and pedicabs, as well ride-hailing apps like Uber and Lyft, to get around.
You won’t want to miss these speakers
One of the best things about Dreamforce 2018 is its impressive list of keynote speakers. Year after year, the convention boasts a stellar lineup of thought leaders spanning all industries.
This year, highlights include:
- Marc Benioff, Chairman and co-CEO of Salesforce
- Al Gore, Chairman of Generation Investment Management
- Geisha J. Williams, President and CEO of PG&E Corporation
- Jane Moran, Global CIO of Unilever
- Andre Iguodala from the Golden State Warriors, Entrepreneur and Investor
- Emily Chang, Technology Anchor at Bloomberg
- Adrian Grenier, Actor, Filmmaker, Social Advocate
- will.i.am, Founder and CEO of i.am+
- Janet Foutty, CEO of Deloitte Consulting LLP
- Bernard J. Tyson, Chairman and CEO of Kaiser Permanente
Be smart: 3 things to know about Dreamforce sessions
1. There are endless options
With 2,700 sessions to choose from, there are plenty of choices. The sessions cover a variety of formats and topics. Attendees will have the chance to meet with Salesforce product teams, hear from expert Salesforce users at leading companies, and learn innovative strategies to meet contemporary business challenges.
2. Plan ahead
Keep in mind that registration is required for attending sessions. You should have received an email notification with instructions to reserve a spot at sessions through the Agenda Builder. Check out this page for tips on using the Agenda Builder.
3. When they’re happening
Breakout sessions will take place from Tuesday, Sept. 25 at 8:00 a.m. to Friday, Sept. 28 at 2:00 p.m.
Networking events and parties galore
Dreamforce is as much fun as it is educational.
With more than 100,000 professionals in attendance, the opportunities to form new connections, collaborations, and partnerships are virtually endless. The conference is designed to bring people together, both in-person and online.
Prior to the event, check out some of the Dreamforce groups in the Trailblazer Community.
Once you’re there, be sure to attend the Welcome Reception, Dream Valley activities, Dreamfest, and Salesforce partner parties to have fun and meet your peers.
Dreamfest, your hosts’ main party, has featured musical guests such as Lenny Kravitz, Alicia Keys, U2, Foo Fighters, Stevie Wonder, and Bruno Mars. Stay tuned for this year’s performance lineup.
The premier Dreamforce party to attend
Now in its fourth year, the WalkMe Dreamforce Party is one of the most popular Dreamforce events.
This year, kick off your conference with a bang. We’re hosting our party at 8:00 p.m. on the 25 at the Terra Gallery, located at 511 Harrison Street.
WalkMe’s Dreamforce Party is not just a fun way to cap off the first night of the conference. Guests will meet top influencers spanning hundreds of companies in a professional, relaxed environment.
Here’s a look at last year’s party.
WalkMe at Dreamforce
Shameless plug: WalkMe will be at Dreamforce in a big way, and we’re excited to show you what we’re doing.
First things first. We’ll be at booths Nos. 219 and 1716. Come say hi, we want to see your beautiful, shining faces.
There, you can meet WalkMe product experts who will perform demos and tell you about all of the features we provide.
Since the launch of WalkMe Automation, we’re zeroing in on one of the most important technologies affecting enterprises today. Discover how automation can transform your employee experience, boost productivity on your enterprise systems, and eliminate errors.
You’ll also enjoy watching a talented illusionist perform mind-boggling tricks.
Your packing list: Dreamforce essentials
Here’s a list of the most important things to remember when packing for the conference.
The recommended attire for Dreamforce is business casual.
Prepare yourself for the air conditioning inside conference rooms by dressing in layers. And of course, don’t forget your party pants for nightly events.
2. Rain gear
You must also account for San Francisco’s unpredictable weather.
Check out the forecast when it’s time to pack, but you can plan on it being warm during the day and chilly at night. Bring a sweater and jacket for the evenings. Rain is also likely — make sure you bring a raincoat or umbrella.
3. Comfortable shoes
You’ll be walking a lot within and between conference venues, so wear practical shoes. After four long days, your feet will thank you.
Don’t forget to bring chargers for all of your electronic devices. External battery packs are a great idea — just charge them at night and you won’t have to worry about searching for an outlet in the middle of your busy day.
5. Business cards
The basic rule is this: Think about how many business cards you’ll need, then double that number. Then add some more.
6. The Salesforce Events app
This app will be your secret weapon for navigating Dreamforce. There, you can view and manage your agenda, stay on top of all of the main events, and learn more about Dreamforce happenings. It also helps attendees find their way around the city.
7. A good attitude
Four busy days at Dreamforce can be exhausting, but don’t let the commotion wear you out! Remember why you came, and all of the things you hoped to get out of the event. Few conferences offer as much education and networking value as Dreamforce. Keep drinking coffee, keep attending the sessions, and keep smiling.
More to do in San Francisco
If you’re lucky enough to have extra time in San Francisco, make sure you check out some of this incredible city’s main sights:
- Walk across The Golden State Bridge
- Tour the historical prison Alcatraz
- Climb Colt Tower for a breathtaking view of the city
- Hike the Marin Headlands
- Visit Muir Woods
If you feel like exploring beyond the city limits, visit some of these other nearby, coveted destinations:
- Go wine tasting in Napa Valley
- Enjoy nature in Lake Tahoe
- Road Trip down the coast to Santa Cruz
Use the conference’s official hashtags to share your ideas and keep up with others’: #Dreamforce and #DF18.