Adobe Opens Summit With More Integration In Marketing Cloud

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adobe cloudIf Adobe’s Monday announcements at its annual Summit are any indication, the theme for the company’s Marketing Cloud going into 2014 is “Integration.”

This theme manifests in new features Adobe introduced including: a customer data repository (Master Marketing Profile), the ability to evaluate online and offline marketing activities (Marketing Mix Planning), deeper integration with Adobe’s Creative Cloud via a single storage space for marketing creative (Shared Assets) and the ability to manage, develop and measure content on mobile apps.

Adobe’s quarterly earnings call last week predicted some of these announcements. For instance, company CEO Shantanu Narayen said during the call, "The publishing industry wants a single digital asset repository and workflow to create content once and repurpose across Web, video, mobile and other channels.”

Shared Assets, designed to give marketers the ability to quickly use creative in their Marketing Cloud-powered campaigns, ostensibly provides a solution to that particular pain point. Kevin Lindsay, Adobe’s director of product marketing, acknowledged tremendous overlap between Creative Cloud and Marketing Cloud clients. “All [marketers] use Creative Cloud in some capacity,” he said.

The benefit for Adobe’s clients is the ability to push consistent creative quickly across channels. The Master Marketing Profile is designed to give marketers the data they need to target consumers in real time – according to Lindsay, this could mean delivering a marketing message in less than half a second.

Adobe seems to be expanding in its attempt to bring together online and offline marketing activities through Marketing Mix Planning. Adobe Marketing Cloud was in its early days known for its Web analytics, acquired from Omniture.

Adobe’s new focus on combining offline and online data aligns the company’s messaging with Acxiom and [x+1] – neither of which are marketing cloud providers, but both of which have data-management platforms (DMPs) that compete with Adobe’s. The ability to link online activity, offline activity and mobile activity is increasingly becoming a rallying cry among marketing and ad tech vendors.

“Digital marketing isn’t a silo anymore,” Lindsay said. Of course, this sentiment isn’t foreign to anyone who’s paid attention to digital marketing in recent years. The ability to send the right message through the right channel at the right time is the ideal for every marketer. As such, vendors commonly claim their solutions provide these very capabilities.

While the extent to which Adobe delivers on these new Marketing Cloud features remains to be seen, the company has a reputation among its clients for having a well-integrated stack. This shouldn’t be too much of a surprise, considering Adobe managed to whittle 20-30 acquired point products down to a six-product-strong Marketing Cloud.

And Marketing Cloud certainly is continuing its upward trajectory, with $267 million in Q1 revenue, representing 24% year-over-year growth. The company also claims to have 64% of the Fortune 50 using its Marketing Cloud.

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