Adobe Jumps On Commerce Bandwagon, Rolls Out ‘Shoppable Media’

ShopMediaAdobe isn’t exactly synonymous with ecommerce.

At least, synonymous in the sense of competitors SAP and Oracle, which have invested aggressively and acquired commerce-centric companies like hybris, ATG Commerce and Datalogix, respectively.

The extent of Adobe’s commerce capabilities, to date, have spanned standard site analytics, A/B testing and tag management, but the Adobe Marketing Cloud came out swinging Monday and rolled out shoppable rich media, contextual content for email campaigns and tighter integration between its content and campaign execution tools.

“Now that we have an integration to Adobe Media Optimizer, our search and display technology, we’re combining known information with anonymous to drive better offers,” explained Kerry Reilly, director of product marketing for campaign execution tool Adobe Campaign.

This “known” information is supplied by Campaign, formerly French cross-channel marketing platform Neolane, which Adobe acquired in June 2013, and incorporates loyalty information, recency and frequency data and user promotion history.

Although the concept is nothing new – blending database with behavioral marketing – “we’re getting better at knowing how many times you’ve seen ads for something you’ve already bought,” Reilly said. “We’re optimizing and rendering content in a more sophisticated way.”

How sophisticated?

Adobe kicked off the process of integration between Campaign and Adobe Target, its site optimization and personalization tool, last March by way of Adobe’s Dynamic Tag Management. It has since integrated Adobe Experience Manager and can now embed shoppable “hot spots” within banners and other rich media units (it does not yet include video, but that is on the horizon), as well as email campaigns.

A consumer can purchase within the unit itself rather than navigating away from the page or email container, thus driving down the number of clicks required.

“We’re linking that inventory data to the shopping cart to drive higher conversion and average order value,” said Reilly. “From a strategic perspective, the way Adobe looks at the market is, there are big data challenges around all of these devices, speed of real time and how do we in real time synthesize it and make it usable?”

In addition to shoppable rich media, the Adobe Target, Experience Manager and Campaign integration is powering what Adobe dubs “contextually relevant email.”

Again, not necessarily reinvent-the-wheel new, but an extension to the engine Adobe’s steadily building. In November, Adobe rolled out triggered emails and in-app messaging based on location. One month earlier, it announced support for beacons in Adobe Analytics.

These integrations culminated Monday in the latest launch of contextually relevant email, which Reilly said enables marketers to trigger new creative and offers at the time of message opening.

By combining Adobe Campaign, Adobe Analytics and Target, you’re able to factor in data points like local weather, local news (The New York Times if you’re in the Big Apple, for example), contextual imagery and creative in the email container based on location and trigger offers which are time- and device-specific.

Although competitive point solutions provide such functionalities, performing data transfers is resource- and time-intensive. At least, that’s what Adobe sees as a major benefit of buying its marketing stack in full.

“A lot of businesses have a separate ESP, content and campaign manager, and those are three different silos right there with manual processes to import, export and reconcile that data, so Adobe’s trying to make sure those are integrations are prebuilt and a marketer can drag and drop a template, populate it from one spot and execute the campaign based on all that data,” Reilly said.

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