Salesforce launches iTunes podcasts CEO Mark Benioff wants his community 'active and engaged' through podcasts, but users would rather his firm's service just worked

True to its "no expense spared" approach to marketing, has signed up to Apple’s iTunes service and is releasing a set of podcasts to trumpet the Salesforce message.

Salesforce is making six podcasts dealing with best practice for the company's AppExchange service, which was launched last year. AppExchange is Salesforce’s attempt to break out of its dependence on the CRM business by getting vendors, companies and individuals in other sectors to use it to develop hosted applications and make them available on the Web.

The podcasts will cover six areas: an introduction to the AppExchange; understanding how to leverage the AppExchange; partnering with; understanding “the value and process of going to market with AppExchange; stories about successful users of AppExchange; a panel discussion with venture capitalists, including one-time number two at Oracle, Ray Lane; and a view on "intelligent reaction" from Adam Bosworth, the vice-president of engineering at Google. on iTunes will also have over 70 podcast sessions of downloadable audio content, the company said.

Marc Benioff, chairman and chief executive of, said: ”We are continuously thinking of new ways to keep our community active and engaged, and to empower them to be successful.” also announced that it had achieved five-nines reliability — - 99.999 percent uptime — in April, a sign that it had got over the outage problems that plagued the company, especially in the US, over the Christmas period.

As a result of those problems, the company introduced service, a dashboard that indicates the service levels of all the Salesforce servers. According to the dashboard, all the services have been at green since 9 March.

However, the service does continue to report minor problems but Salesforce challenged the other CRM vendors, such as Siebel and Microsoft, to make the details of their Web-based CRM services public.