3 Reasons to Attend Adobe Summit: Register Now

Marketing Cloud

General registration is now open for Adobe Summit 2016, March 20-24. Thousands of marketers and advertisers from across the globe will gather in Las Vegas, Nevada to discuss ideas and top practices around cross-channel, customer experiences, mobile and data-driven marketing.

Besides being a digital marketer — and let’s be honest, what marketer doesn’t have digital somewhere in their job description? — here are three reasons why you need to convince your boss to send you to Summit this year.

Experience Las Vegas

Adobe Summit has become so popular, and grown so big that the ‘Silicon Slopes’ of the Salt Lake Valley could no longer house the growth of this event. We’re excited to move this year’s largest Adobe Summit yet to the Venetian and Palazzo Hotels in Las Vegas, Nevada. Home to world-class restaurants, entertainment, nightlife and casinos, Las Vegas is no forgettable experience. Whether you take those memories home, or leave them there, is up to you.

Your Private Rock Concert

Summit Bash 2016, aka your private concert with a world-famous rock band, will undoubtedly be the biggest Bash to date. Bash will be at the LINQ hotel and casino, a short walk from the Adobe Summit venue on Thursday night. If the exciting nightlife of Las Vegas doesn’t peak your interest, you can’t go wrong partying with this American rock band that has sold over 19 million records worldwide.

Learn from the Best – Breakout Sessions

We know sitting in a classroom is just as exciting as Bash. Wait…No.

This is why there will be incredibly powerful speakers presenting at this event. With more than 120 in-depth breakout sessions in nine tracks — including hands-on labs and pre-conference courses — you’ll leave armed with the knowledge you need to wow your boss and make real change in your organization.

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Explore with your Peers

The best thing about Summit is you! Over 8,000 marketers attended last year, and we’re expecting to blow attendance records out of the water again this year. That means even more people, just as smart as you, will all be under one roof. Adobe Summit is THE conference for you to contribute your knowledge, and meet and learn from the best of the best in digital marketing.

Register Now

Register today by visiting the registration and pricing page and be sure to look for more information about special discounts and group passes.

Adobe Training Services will provide pre-conference, hands-on training and courses are available for $750 per one-day session and $1,500 per two-day session. Be sure to sign up for training when you register for Summit 2016.

Exhibits and Sponsorships

For information on sponsorships and promotional opportunities, please send an e-mail to the sponsorship team.

Summit 2016 Helpful Links

Stay connected to the Adobe Summit experience by following the conversation with our Summit 2016 Social Media Channels:

The post 3 Reasons to Attend Adobe Summit: Register Now appeared first on Digital Marketing Blog by Adobe.

Just when you were getting comfortable with personalization, IoT comes along

Marketing Cloud

The Internet of Things (IoT) is all the rage. According to a survey by Economist Intelligence Unit, over half of senior marketers believe that by 2020, the IoT is the technology-related trend that will make the greatest impact on marketing. That’s a bold statement, for sure.

But what does IoT really mean? According to Wikipedia:

The Internet of Things (IoT) is the network of physical objects—devices, vehicles, buildings and other items which are embedded with electronics, software, sensors, and network connectivity, which enables these objects to collect and exchange data.

Given this definition, it’s no surprise that IoT remains shrouded in mystery for most marketers. Marketers place customers at the center of their universe, not objects. They’re asking, “What impact will the IoT have on my customers, and how it will enable me to drive greater loyalty, retention, and revenue for my organization?”

Help from a surprising source

Inadvertently, a friend helped me answer this question when we met for lunch last weekend. She shared her struggle with getting her two-year-old son, James, to bed each night. Tired and frustrated, she bought a Philips Hue smart light bulb, downloaded the accompanying smartphone app, and used the app to gradually dim the connected light bulb in the evening. Essentially, she created a consistent message to her two-year-old that said, “It’s bedtime, James.”

The results? A happier child, a less stressful mom, and a loyal customer for Philips.

From the marketer’s perspective, at the center of this story lies a two-year-old boy and a tired mom, not a “network of physical objects” or a tech-savvy marketing colleague experimenting with technology involving smart light bulbs. For marketers, it’s not about the “things” of the IoT, it’s about the customer experiences with those things.

The IoT has the power to impact traditional consumer behavior, buying patterns, and brand loyalty. I believe that it will transform digital marketing teams in three key ways:

  1.       The emergence of hyper-rich customer profiles

Today we know how a customer interacts with us online. Tomorrow we will know what role our products and brands plays in the customer’s life. Traditional digital channels combined with wearables, connected products, and sensors will enable marketing teams to create a 360-degree view of each customer. We’ll understand things like their temperature preferences, their heart rate, and their workout, sleep, and even driving habits.

Here’s a great example of how Hyundai enriches the profiles of its customers with its Blue Link system:

Blue Link connects Hyundai cars to the Internet and collects vehicle health data for the car owners. Customers can use Blue Link to stay updated on the overall health of their vehicles, receive alerts of urgent issues, and get notified about key vehicle service dates.

The vehicle health data also gives marketing teams key insights into when customers might be best prompted to purchase a new Hyundai. In addition, as Michael Deitz of Hyundai, Senior Manager, Connected Car at Hyundai explains, “It’s about staying top of mind with the customer, so that when it’s time for maintenance they say, ‘I’m going to go to Hyundai because I’m going to get the most qualified technician.’”

  1.    Traditional channel-centric approach shifts to true customer-centric approach

We often hear the term “explosion of channels” as people refer to the growth of mobile devices, smart-watches, and other popular devices. In reality, this explosion has only just begun. While traditional channels like web and mobile will remain king in the short term, new channels will creep in and consume a bigger slice of the marketing mindshare. High value-add connection points will create massive opportunities for marketers. A defined channel-centric approach will shift from being merely difficult to just plain impossible.

Take Samsung, for example:

The Samsung SmartFridge made big waves at CES this year. The large touchscreen on the fridge provides a place for families to share calendars, notes, and photos. With in-fridge camera technology, marketers could know what’s in the fridge (or more importantly what’s not), and deliver useful content through the screen like recommended recipes based on what’s actually in the fridge and highly tailored coupons.

Imagine the fridge being one of several dozen “new channels,” and you quickly see why teams will need to organize around the customer, not the channel, once and for all.

  1.    Personalization turns experiential

Digital marketers talk about personalizing digital experiences—on web, mobile, and other online channels. So far, marketers can only personalize content that customers can experience on a screen. This is changing. In the future, personalization will evolve into true experiences that touch a customer in ways they feel in their everyday lives.

Let’s think back to the new parent example and imagine this:

Anyone who has had a newborn knows that sleep is critical to your baby’s health. You lose sleep worrying about your baby’s well-being when he or she is supposed to be sleeping, tracking sleep patterns, and watching for fevers and stuffy noses. In comes the smart baby monitor (http://mimobaby.com/). As a parent, I now have this data, but can also quickly connect it to an expert who can give me real-time advice on my child’s sleep patterns. I can additionally leverage the data to automatically adjust, or personalize, the lighting and temperature in the room to help my child sleep better.

Now you don’t just see the experiences—you feel the experiences. For the customer, all this adds tremendous value. It also creates new business opportunities for an organization.

These themes will create a new era for marketers—an era of extreme flexibility.

In this new era for marketing in the IoT, data flows in from different sources, personalized experiences are delivered everywhere and anywhere, and the ability to envision and deliver on new business opportunities becomes a necessity. Personalization becomes more complex, more unpredictable, and more personal. Silos within organizations break down to tackle the new world.

Forget the definition that I shared at the beginning of this post.  Here’s how marketers should be thinking about IoT:

The Internet of Things is a means by which we better understand and connect to our customer to provide hyper-relevant experiences. These experiences improve their quality of life, reach them wherever they are, and create new business opportunities for our organization.

Get prepared: attend Adobe Summit Hands-on Lab L321

Do you want to prepare for this new era of flexibility? If so, join us at Adobe Summit for Hands-on Lab L321: Target everywhere: Power experiences across IoT using Adobe Target APIs. In this lab, we’ll show you how to leverage Adobe Target and a comprehensive set of APIs to bring data into Adobe Target from anywhere, personalize based on that data (even experientially personalize), and deliver that personalization to any connected device.

If you’re a developer or technical marketer interested in IoT, want to get familiar with the Adobe Target APIs, or simply need to know how to get started using those APIs to personalize in the IoT, then is a must-attend lab for you.

The post Just when you were getting comfortable with personalization, IoT comes along appeared first on Digital Marketing Blog by Adobe.

The Academy Doesn’t Care About Social Favorites

Marketing Cloud

In 2016 the Academy doesn’t care about Oscar social favorites.

The red carpet, designer gowns and tuxes, and countless Tweets are what make up the Oscars. It’s a chance for 6000 members of the Academy of motion pictures to buck popular opinion and choose who they think is the “best.”

Last year I used social tracking to predict 5 of the 6 top categories (Supporting Actor/Actress, Director, Actor/Actress, and Picture) for the Oscars. I created my social based predictions by looking at the name of the nominee tied to Oscar related terms. By adding in social sentiment and buzz growth, I determine who was the social fan favorite to win.

Here is a recap of last year, we tracked not just total mentions but growth:

Best Picture:  Birdman (Mentions) American Sniper (Growth) W-Birdman

Best Actor: Bradley Cooper (Mentions) Michael Keaton (Growth) W-Eddie Redmayne

Best Actress: Julianne Moore (Still Alice) W-Julianne Moore

Supporting Actor: J.K. Simmons (Whiplash) W-J.K. Simmons

Supporting Actress: Meryl Streep (Mentions) Patricia Arquette (Growth) W-Patricia Arquette

Best Director: Wes Anderson (Mentions) Alejandro Gonzales Inarritu (Growth) W-Alejandro Gonzales Inarritu

 

Following that same model. The Adobe Digital Index predicted the 2016 winners. This year the Academy chose to give in to the fans Leonardo DiCaprio and Alicia Vikander and nothing else.

2016 Predictions and results

Best Picture: The Revenant (Mentions), The Revenant (Growth) W-Spotlight

Best Actor: Leonardo DiCaprio (Mentions), Leonardo DiCaprio (Growth) W-Leonardo DiCaprio

Best Actress: Jennifer Lawrence (Mentions), Jennifer Lawrence (Growth) W-Brie Larson

Best Supporting Actor: Sylvester Stallone (Mentions), Tom Hardy (Growth) W-Mark Rylance

Best Supporting Actress: Alicia Vikander (Mentions), Rachel McAdams (Growth) W-Alicia Vikander

Best Director: George Miller (Mentions), George Miller (Growth) W-Alejandro Gonzales Inarritu

Social mentions have proven to be a great way to predict movie success, Super Bowl ad value, and Fall TV predictions. However, the Academy chose once again to buck the social trend, but at least it gave Leo and his fans what they justly deserved.

The post The Academy Doesn’t Care About Social Favorites appeared first on Digital Marketing Blog by Adobe.

Killing It With Mobile-Testing — Brand Secrets Revealed

Marketing Cloud

Businesses large and small are unlocking the potential of mobile testing. The logic behind mobile testing is nothing new, but in the midst of the current mobile explosion, many are realizing that now is the time to get their underperforming mobile sites firing on all cylinders.

By 2017, the world will have downloaded nearly 270 billion mobile apps, providing brands with valuable user data they can use to spur even more downloads. With an ever-increasing number of your customers accessing your site via mobile device, it is absolutely imperative for them to be presented with clear, concise, and accessible mobile experiences. An effective mobile site delivers not only what you want consumers to see, but also — and more importantly — what they came for in the first place.

For a Killer Mobile Strategy, Get Obsessed With Testing

Killing it with a mobile-testing strategy means pushing the envelope and continually asking how to improve even more. While your mobile experience will keep getting better, you will never reach a plateau where you no longer need to optimize your mobile sites and apps. That is because your users’ needs and expectations will always be evolving.

Mobile users are picky and impatient. They determine within seconds whether they like a mobile site or app. If it is too complicated or too slow, they will move on and possibly post a negative review in the app store. Because you have just one quick opportunity to get it right — and because test cycles keep shrinking to stay competitive — developing a smart mobile-testing strategy is the key to success.

It may sound obvious, but it bears repeating: To find out what works and what does not work for your mobile audience, you need a mobile strategy based on focused, consistent testing.

Four Tips for a Killer Mobile-Testing Strategy

You do not need to be a genius to optimize a mobile site or app; you just need to test and identify important user-behavior trends. Following are four ways you can start doing that today.

  1.  Test Early and Often

What are you waiting for? There are countless details and variables to optimize, and your audience will not wait long for you to get it right. So, test at your earliest opportunity — and then continue testing. Gerie Owen, an expert in test-driven development, explains, “Testers must work closely with developers and usability designers not only to understand the requirements, but also to make the types of suggestions that will expedite the development process.”

Some brands launch mobile sites despite only truly testing their desktop sites. Unfortunately, what works on desktop will not translate to a mobile device where fat-finger-friendly design is key. Call-to-action (CTA) buttons and registration forms must be bigger and simpler to accommodate thumbs browsing on the go. Seriously take into consideration WHY your visitors would be accessing your site from a mobile device and clearly present ways to complete those actions on the mobile homepage or as early as is possible. For example, one auto-insurance brand was able to increase engagement with its roadside-assistance line by over 1000 percent simply by moving the phone number to the top of the mobile-web homepage instead of being buried deep within the mobile site.

  1.  Do Not Reinvent the Wheel: A/B Testing

Getting results from mobile testing is not magic. Developing and using a commonsense mobile-testing strategy to determine who is using your site, what devices they are using, and what they are looking for can lead to huge gains in conversions.

Mobile A/B testing allows you to simultaneously run multiple versions of your mobile site to real users and then measure which performs the best. When brands employ rigorous A/B testing, they can hone in on the right mobile message to the right mobile users at the right mobile minute. For example, Marks & Spencer used A/B testing on their new full-screen “Cooking Mode” in their mobile recipe app and discovered that a simple tweak to a CTA button caused a 20 percent increase in engagement.

  1. Personalize With Targeted Notifications

Find value in micro-moments” by applying lessons learned in mobile testing to personalize the mobile experience. Testing is the backbone of real-time personalization, enabling you to deliver targeted notifications that bring value to your mobile experience and keep users coming back.

This requires the ability to integrate targeting, testing, and analytics so that behavioral data feeds directly into content automation. As you test your in-app and mobile-web content, look for opportunities to connect content to users’ unique locations, preferences, and lifecycle data. The payoff will be well worth the effort: “highly targeted push notifications can drive up to 293 percent more response. 293 percent!

  1. Test for Device Fragmentation

A core challenge of mobile testing is testing for the increasing variety of devices, operating systems, browsers, network-connection speeds, CPUs (central processing units), connections, and more. Non-functional testing (testing aspects of mobile experience that are not connected to user behavior) is critical to reaching your full audience without alienating users because their browsers or devices are incompatible with your mobile site or app.

For example, performance testing can reveal your response time and mobile-transaction processing speed on different carriers and from different locations. Stress testing will show you what happens when a user has low storage or memory, and volume testing shows how your mobile website performs under a high volume of users and data.

What happens when a user’s battery is low or they receive a text while navigating your app? If you do not know the answer, you have not investigated your mobile-user experience deeply enough.

A Mobile-Testing Strategy Leads to Mobile Value

Ultimately, you want your mobile site and apps to serve deeper purposes than simply checking your “branded mobile experience” box. Mobile testing is a powerful way to gather feedback from users and insights into their pain points and desires. The better you know your users, the more value and utility you will be able to deliver — and not just one-time value but consistent value over time as your users evolve and you continue to test.

Mobile testing certainly presents new challenges, but the good news is that the skills you need to test well are no different from the skills you have already honed as a digital marketer. When you have a deep curiosity about your users, relentlessly test for their needs and preferences, and challenge yourself to think outside the box, your mobile value goes through the roof!

The post Killing It With Mobile-Testing — Brand Secrets Revealed appeared first on Digital Marketing Blog by Adobe.

The Future of Email – Where Will It Be in 2020?

Marketing Cloud

It’s easy to say with confidence that the email landscape of 2020 will be defined by the investment and effort organizations put into their programs. Here are 3 predictions for email marketing and the role it will play in marketing in 2020.

1. Thinking Beyond the Inbox – Demise of the “Email Service Provider”

In the past few years, a shift emerged where traditional email service providers explored new territory with mergers and acquisitions, new platform interfaces, and rebranding to become marketing clouds. In 2020, we’re likely to see few competitors describe themselves as “email service providers.” Despite name rebrands, an ESP is not a marketing cloud. For email marketers looking to advance, they need to find a way to put email in context of other channels and be sure the marketing platform they’re using lets them do that.

2. Director of Email is CMO’s Right Hand

Traditionally, email marketing fell under the umbrella of a larger digital marketing strategy – a sort of bolt-on task assigned on an ad-hoc basis or to entry level practitioners. But the profession has changed, and today’s email marketers are entering the field with more technical prowess than ever before. Armed with solid marketing strategy, deep knowledge of data, and cutting-edge proficiencies, 2020’s practitioners will be coveted assets. In fact, smart companies that recognize the value of email marketing will retain top talent by offering tenured career opportunities within the company.

3. Contextual Data Will Be King

Today’s consumer can be anywhere doing anything when checking their email. For the email marketer, learning to drive loyalty with the use of contextual data clues – time, geo-location, weather, events, behavior, etc. – is gold. By 2020, the ability to use these data points to inform campaigns and drive specific content in real time to subscribers will become the status quo. While only the most advanced programs are using or looking to use these data points now, new integrations and technology will create opportunities for marketers to gain competitive advantage by applying and executing data based on trends that are unique to the business.

Conclusion

We are on the cusp of a golden era of email marketing where technology enables reliable, personal interactions between people and brands. Savvy marketers will embrace new technologies, allowing them to more clearly create one consumer experience, regardless of channel. Digital communication will evolve and while no one can predict the future, one thing is perfectly clear – email marketing is sure to be part of it.

The post The Future of Email – Where Will It Be in 2020? appeared first on Digital Marketing Blog by Adobe.

Content is Still King: Digital Experience Management Track at Adobe Summit

Marketing Cloud

What’s at stake if your content marketing strategy & tools aren’t fully up to speed for the digital age? Only everything. 

Sure, you have the best digital agencies, creatives, marketers, technology team, but it’s the little things that can grind a marketer’s campaign to a snail’s pace: “Here’s a good piece content – no wait a minute, can I use this in the US, Europe, & Asia?” “Where’s the new infographic Bill was supposed to do? What do you mean, he’s on vacation?”

OK, things aren’t that bad at most companies, but you get the idea. Today, content may have to serve many functions in the customer cycle, from building awareness to purchase, and long after the sale for service and support. Marketers have a tough job dealing with the large volumes of content – and they have to do it in print, on TV, and on digital channels, all while telling a consistent story that engages customers throughout the customer journey.

You need exceptional content – and a lot of it

Marketers need to create a lot of content, and it must engage with the audience in a very relevant and personal way. Consumers can get bored pretty easily and they may need to see 10 pieces of content before they actually make a decision on a purchase. And then you need to keep marketing to them so they don’t jump to the competition. Creating all that content is a big challenge because it needs to be with the latest design and it has to really resonate and it has to be something that really hits that target persona. The most engaging content comes from the customer community, for instance real travel pictures. It brings a level of authenticity that you simply cannot create in-house. As all of this content builds up and flows into a central place, it can be hard to manage. Who sees what? What’s old, what’s new, what do I still have rights for?

Your content needs to be everywhere

Then all of this stuff has to be assembled and delivered to a consumer as part of a campaign. That person could be on a mobile device, they could be on print. You want the content to be flexible enough so that it can be used on those different places. You also need to personalize on the fly to keep the stream of content relevant to that person. After that, you need to understand and measure how the content was used, so it can flow back in to influence new content you would create.

A centralized content strategy can solve these problems while offering content creation agility at scale that cannot be gained in any other way. It facilitates the marketer in telling the story constantly across the content life cycle in order to create and ensure brand consistency. By understanding what the content life cycle is from the customer’s perspective, everyone on the team knows why and what purpose they’re creating that content for.

So, if you want to tell a story, all the content is already there, centralized and organized so that now you’re in a position as a marketer with the tools to assemble not just images and videos, but text excerpts, blog excerpts, and other stuff that you can piece together and tell a story on demand. It just flows into the central place and it’s right at your fingertips.

Do you want to find out more about how this works? Here are my recommended sessions at this year’s Adobe Summit:

S811: What’s new in Experience Manager Assets: Top 10 hottest DAM features

With digital assets as the foundation of every digital experience, we’ve made it easier than ever to unlock the true value of images, video, and rich media hidden in an organization’s silos to deliver amazing experiences. Join us as we showcase the latest innovations in DAM and Rich Media that every marketer needs to know.

S825 – Centralized content workflows: Breaking down the walls around social content

Consumers interact with your brand on many different channels, and they expect a consistent, engaging experience. Brands cannot deliver this experience when internal marketing teams are siloed and unable to collaborate across channels. Forward-thinking companies are making an organizational shift toward convergence, with a focus on building efficient workflows for creating, delivering, measuring, and optimizing their cross-channel content.

S819: Building and measuring the value of social communities

In this session, discover how to use Adobe Experience Manager Communities to quickly build community sites, enhance your customers’ experience through user-generated content such as blogs, Q&A, and reviews and ratings, and take advantage of analytics to understand your community engagement, such as identifying advocates. 

S804: Content marketing secrets: Getting customers to fall in love with your brand! 

Join us to learn how Adobe Marketing Cloud can help you deliver personalized, digital experiences tailored to your customer and how the latest innovations in agile content marketing can improve customer segmentation and content performance.

S821: How user-generated content powers today’s content marketing strategies

Learn how Tourism Australia uses Adobe Experience Manager and integration with Livefyre, the leading social curation platform, to unlock the power of social to attract and engage new visitors and deliver on their content marketing needs.

S813: Maximum content velocity with Adobe Creative Cloud and Experience Manager

In this session, get tips and tricks on how a leading brand leverages the Creative Cloud and Experience Manager to create, manage, and deliver more content than ever before.

S354 – Optimize your creative workflows with Adobe Creative Cloud

One of the strongest value propositions we bring to our customers is the close ties between creative content and marketing campaigns. To realize the full potential of an Adobe Marketing Cloud workflow, creatives need to be integrated into the process. We’ll explore methods and best practices for enterprises to integrate creative into marketing workflows using Experience Manager and Creative Cloud.

S809: Ready for the world: Is your content strategy truly global?

Discover how to leverage automation to set up site structures for global content deployment and learn hands-on how to use Experience Manager content translation capabilities to deliver better global digital experiences.

S812: Boost mobile conversion: Top-rated rich media experiences revealed

Learn how to identify areas for mobile experience improvement, design high-converting mobile experiences, and deliver shoppable images and video at scale.

The post Content is Still King: Digital Experience Management Track at Adobe Summit appeared first on Digital Marketing Blog by Adobe.

Optimization and Personalization in the Telco Space


Marketing Cloud

The telco space, which includes mobile, cable and Internet service providers, has many unique considerations when it comes to optimization and personalization. Despite their brand and product diversity, all companies that fall under this umbrella are trying to accomplish a few of the same things—namely, to drive new subscriptions as well as to encourage upgrades among existing users. These companies are also working hard to evolve their self-service capabilities to, ultimately, reduce call center and in store volume. Because of these broad considerations, telco is fast becoming one of the most complex optimization spaces in the industry, with countless opportunities for brands to interact and deliver relevant, customer-driven experiences.

To dig into the topic I brought together some of Adobe’s telco leaders. Each works closely with some of our clients and partners in the space and has lots of unique insight to share. Here’s what they had to say…

Let’s talk about conversion events—specifically that first one, driving new customers. In your experience what have you seen be successful for telco companies? How are best in class organizations driving new subscribers?

kjenkinsKendra Jenkins, Principal Consultant, Multi-Solution Architect: One thing that’s interesting about the space is that, typically, there aren’t a lot of options for customers when it comes to Internet and cable. Maybe there are one or two competitors in your area, but it’s not limitless. So for telco companies the focus really needs to be on making the customer experience as smooth as possible, and to get visitors in the buy flow quickly and seamlessly.

The other piece is making sure customers are aware of everything available to them. It’s always a back and forth—should we simplify packages to make the customer experience easier, or should we present a variety of options so the end user is more satisfied with her decision, in the end? We’ve tested it a lot and over and over have found that customers feel more confident when they’ve been presented with all of the options and can customize their packages accordingly. That’s the better experience.

So what strategies have you leveraged to make the offers and packages more user friendly? How have you improved communication and made the offering clearer to customers?

Kendra: With my clients it’s more about “are you interested in X?” with a single-play offer or package—a double- or triple-play, for example. One of the things we’ve done is pre-select options for them versus having them select themselves. The results have varied—there’s been no clear-cut winner so brands should definitely test before rolling out anything large scale.

ShoaibShoaib Alam, Optimization Manager: Like Kendra mentioned, the number of companies selling these products and services is fairly limited. So I agree—showing what product packages are available is key. In addition, we’ve also done a lot of competitive analysis on the site experience. For example, in a particular geo or region one cable provider has specific advantages over the others in the space and highlighting the benefits of Cable Provider A over Cable Provider B can have a positive impact on conversion.

But, interestingly, packages are usually very similar, even across competitors. So it’s important to optimize the user experience on the page, make it easy as possible for them, help them find what they need very quickly and, overall, maximize the buy flow. We’ve had lots of success increasing interaction on the page itself—creating a filter-style tool in which users can self-select speeds, if they want a phone or not, budgets, things like that. This enables users to be part of the purchase process, versus a traditional retail interaction where they’re being sold to. It’s really the digital equivalent of browsing a store—and we’ve seen it increase conversion rates.

How have you seen personalization help increase upsells?

Shoaib: I’ve seen clients look at a user’s previous purchase behaviors as well as how long they have been a customer, and deliver personalized experiences from that data. For example, a high value customer with great credit and a long history with the company will get a personalized upsells offer throughout their browsing experience. Again, side-by-side comparisons can be very powerful here. You have Package X, but Package Y is only $5 or $10 more—and look how much more you get. That’s been very helpful when it comes to upsells in the space.

JasonJason Hickey, Principal Consultant & Solution Team Lead: I would echo that. I had a client that had five different packages and we wanted to determine a way to drive upsells and improve the average cart value. We ran an A/B test that highlighted their “Recommended Package,” which was tied to their second tier package, and moved that recommendation to the third tier package, which was $5 per month more. Adoption of that middle tier package improved immediately and resulted in incremental revenue for the provider.

I’ve also seen the order of packages have an impact. People seem to intuitively implement results in a “low to high” ordering configuration, but transitioning to a “high to low” layout actually helped migrate visitors’ eyes towards the high end of the spectrum first. We were able to increase average order value without impacting conversion rates—in other words, we converted the same number of users, but we just did it with greater value per order, since more people were opting for the higher priced packages.

That’s interesting. So there was a layer of psychology to it all. Were people more likely to go with medium packages after seeing high packages first?

Jason: If you follow some of the eye tracking studies you see that people read up to down, left to right. So that definitely had something to do with it.

BrittanyBrittany Chandler, Senior Consultant: Many of my clients are drilling down on shopper personas—the deal shopper, the data shopper—and aligning different groups with different experiences. For them it’s really about how they can drive their most valuable personas down a desired path through targeted messaging and meaningful contextual experiences.

That’s a really great point—people are coming in with all different needs in this experience.

JessieDoeckJessie Doecke, Optimization Consultant: Some of the recent testing we’ve done is with broad-reaching pages that include lots of packages and add-ons, versus pages that are cleaner and more straightforward—fewer packages and smaller bundles, for example. Moving forward we’re going to use lookalike models and see who, coming in, has a greater propensity to buy a single-, double- or triple-play. So rather than targeting everyone we’re looking to deliver more relevant experiences that give them what they need, and not everything.

In terms of upgrades we’re already starting to see that broad, high-level messaging through navigation works. Add-ons and upgrades, interestingly, have seemed to be very seasonal—it depends on the time of year. Showtime might be a powerful add-on during certain times of the year, and sports packages another—so it’s important to be conscious of that.

Shoaib: I’ve also tried leveraging neighborhood information with some of my clients for geo-targeting. Certain neighborhoods have a higher concentration of family homes and are more likely to have users who want Internet, TV and phone service—families have a greater likelihood of having landlines. For those neighborhoods we try targeting triple-play packages versus double-plays. In urban areas, especially in the center of the city, users are more inclined to just buy Internet services and we try to upsell them to higher Internet packages because they may be using streaming TV services. This approach has generated a lot of value to customers and clients.

What about reducing call center use and in-store traffic? Has that been a focus at all?

Shoaib: Call centers are expensive for our clients. We’ve done a lot of testing to figure out what pages on the site are triggering the most calls. To test this, we’ve assigned unique phone numbers to each of the website pages to see which is generating more calls—and from there we can troubleshoot. We’ve also pulled logs from call center reps and sent surveys to see what users are calling them about to see if we can solve those problems directly on the site. Maybe there are common questions about how many channels they could get with a particular package—if so, we’d put that upfront to hopefully curb the number of calls and, with it, the overhead associated.

Kendra: Different from self-service account activities, we had an interesting win in prospect area of a client’s site, where we actually added a second CTA that allowed them to call more easily. We saw a lift in prospect orders from both phone and online.

Jessie: Some customers are just more inclined to call in anyways. Giving those customers another way to place their orders opens up an incremental revenue stream—if you catch the shopper at the right time and the right place of the content consumption path, it won’t impact online orders but will likely increase phone orders.

So if you had to sum it all up, what would you say the biggest optimization and personalization opportunities are for telco brands?

Brittany: Really focus on the mobile experience, whether it’s mobile web or apps. So many consumers are coming in through mobile that it’s essential to focus in on communication, strategy and visitor experiences. It could be reducing content or forms, offering an easy click to call option. That would be my top recommendation—it’s a huge opportunity.

Jessie: I agree, optimizing mobile sites for new customers seems to be the biggest opportunity to broaden the acquisition net at the earliest point of research and discovery, especially since consumers are moving across so many devices, all of the time, everywhere.

Jason: I also think there’s a huge interest in recommendations—automated behavioral targeting with product suggestions comes to mind. I see an expansion from selling only devices to selling devices and accessories. The margins on cases, accessories, and other peripheral pieces presents a massive opportunity. To drive this algorithmically as opposed to manually saves them time and generates incredible revenue potentials.

Kendra: We’ve seen lots of success targeting customers based on existing account products or settings. Driving that knowledge base and role-based targeting has helped us drive more relevant experiences and product upsells.

Shoaib: We’re at such an interesting point. In terms of service providers there’s so much change happening. Look at the increase in TV consumption online, for example. There’s an option to sign up for HBO to Go only—you don’t even have to get the channel through your cable package anymore. Plenty of entertainment companies and TV companies are evolving their services and offerings to meet consumer demand. We see lots of telco companies moving away from just being a cable TV or Internet provider and to being more a technology firm—there are set top boxes that look like Apple TVs with apps, even, and they’re working to collect analytics data so they can better serve existing customers while understanding seasonality trends. It all helps brands optimize their offerings and deliver the best possible customer experiences.

The post Optimization and Personalization in the Telco Space appeared first on Digital Marketing Blog by Adobe.

Create the Complete Marketing Picture with Your Offline Data

Marketing Cloud

Today a marketer has access to literally tens of thousands of metrics through analytics services. It isn’t unusual for an organization or a business to not know where to start in deciding which factors are crucial to their success and which matter less. Today’s companies are using digital analytics tools to monitor and measure the performance of their websites, mobile apps, email marketing campaigns, and other marketing efforts and it takes some careful thought to create a properly functioning analytics program.

What you can discover about your customer’s online behavior is amazing, includes metrics like who downloaded your app and how much time they spent using it, session length, launches, days since last use, and mobile carrier. You might also be interested in how many times they post to Facebook from within your app, showing their satisfaction with what they created.  This kind of thinking can lead to solid ideas about the direction you need to go.

For a retail business, you can discover cart size and cart abandonment stats as well as email campaign and social media metrics.

But what more and more businesses are discovering is that this online data alone is actually a very incomplete picture of your customers’ experiences and that sitting on your laptops and servers is likely a goldmine of “offline” data that could give you a broader insight into your customers’ interests and needs – all of which can help enrich their online experiences and develop loyalty to your brand.

Making use of your offline data is sometimes called “data onboarding.”

Most marketers fear that their offline data, which includes data from events and conferences, customer retail transactions in a brick and mortar store, CRM systems, data from loyalty programs, and metrics from call centers are too difficult to integrate and combine with their online analytic data. Many fear it would be too complex a task to use it effectively.

However, most of the time, much of offline data is actually in digital form already and most of it can be integrated into your analytics management systems. In fact, a number of companies have sprung up in the last couple of years to take your offline data and integrate it into the design of online campaigns.

Mine your offline data sources

Here are some offline data sources that, when integrated into your online analytics campaigns, can bring real value.

Event and conference data. Uploading the wealth of offline data from conferences and events is now a standard practice for most B2B companies. Most conference attendees are scanned, swiped, badged, and ID’d in some way for entry into every session, during every exhibit booth interaction, upon entrance into sponsor exhibitions, and to take part in contests. Much of this information sits unused in a database, but it could be leveraged to help you better understand your buyers’ journeys through all channels and in developing insightful attribution models that exploit this wealth of information.

Customer Briefing Center visits. Most B2B companies invest enormous effort to encourage top prospects to visit their regional or HQ customer briefing centers. These visits can be enormously productive, offering the opportunity to showcase emerging products and solutions and engage the prospect or customer in relevant conversations. Most CRM systems now have extensions that allow a company to upload data and information about briefing center visits, yet many B2B companies miss this important opportunity. Make sure you are incorporating this valuable data into your efforts.

Voice and CRM data. The crowning achievement of any data matching effort comes from joining knowledge about your customers’ use of your products obtained from emails and phone calls with your marketing data. CRM databases have often been isolated for a variety of reasons, but new integration tools and better understanding of how to protect truly private data now makes this data accessible, relevant, and worthy of on-boarding in your marketing systems.

Ungated online events. It used to be that activities like webinars, blog posts, videos, surveys, podcasts, eBooks, and other types of presentations that your customer engaged in outside your domain were shrouded in mystery. That’s no longer the case and this “offline” data is readily available. This data helps you better understand your customers’ journeys and gives you insights into the worth of your own content and online experiences.

By integrating data sources that have traditionally been considered out of reach, marketers will be able to quickly target the right people, filter out the wrong ones, expand their scale, and get ahead of the competition.

The post Create the Complete Marketing Picture with Your Offline Data appeared first on Digital Marketing Blog by Adobe.

Advanced Ad Management Tools Adapt to Change – Why Google’s ad serving change is the true test of algorithmic know-how

Marketing Cloud

Advertisers, consumers, and search engines have a healthy tension within the search environment. Advertisers want to reach the maximum number of qualified consumers while spending the least amount on advertising. Consumers want to see content with the least amount of interference from advertisers. And, search engines balance this tension, with their own needs by giving consumers a great experience, while maximizing their ad revenue and driving results for advertisers.

The latest episode in the evolution of search plays out after Google’s confirmation that they will stop showing ads on the right rail for desktop results globally (except for PLAs and knowledge panels). Keyword behavior will change along most metrics (positions, CPCs, impression share, etc) and the effects will differ across your keyword set depending on whether they are in high positions. Search management rules of thumb relating to average position and impression share will need to be refreshed and relearned. Performance will be temporarily volatile and for those who run campaigns manually, the next few weeks might entail several late nights.

But what about Adobe Media Optimizer’s (AMO) algorithms? Don’t they require massive adjustments too? Do you or your customers need to be worried about these changes? No.

AMO’s algorithms were built with three key principles, making them robust to search engine changes over the years. AMO’s algorithms are:

Resilient to changes in the auction mechanisms: 

Keywords in our algorithms are modeled by bids and their effect is on number of impressions, clicks and revenue, not position. We realized very early on that position was an artifact, a side effect of the auction process. The true effect of a bid in the auction was on the number of impressions and clicks a keyword received. Thus, the reduction in number of available positions has no effect on the way our models work. 

Self-correcting to marketplace changes:

Our models selfcorrect with volatility. While we will see volatility in performance in the coming weeks, our models account for the change in

keyword performance and correct their estimates without human intervention. What’s more, they smooth out short-term fluctuations to make for stable and accurate estimates.

Stable by statistical aggregation: 

Long tail keywords with a click or less per day are notoriously hard to model. Data sparsity of both auction side (clicks, impressions, and CPC) as well as conversion side means that one cannot naively estimate how well a keyword will do. We overcame this limitation a long time ago by using finite mixture models that statistically aggregate similar keywords to build reliable models, even for the long tail. These models become even more relevant now as the changes in Google’s ad serving would mean that fewer keywords would get impressions and clicks. This would worsen the data sparsity problem.

We think that the current changes in Google’s ad-serving will be a test for many marketers. AMO’s stable and self-correcting models should assure customers that changes to the auction and ad placement are automatically incorporated into bid decisions (even if these changes aren’t public to market). Armed with robust and scalable algorithms (along with the right strategy), sophisticated marketers will continue to rule the day.

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Adobe Campaign Debuts as a Leader in The Relevancy Ring – ESP Buyer’s Guide 2016

Marketing Cloud

Recent data from The Relevancy Group reveals that 91% of marketing executives believe that email is the single most effective channel for driving revenue. Despite the fact that email is alive and well, data from a recent survey we conducted indicates that two-thirds of marketers are less than satisfied with their current email marketing efforts. So where is the disconnect? The answer lies in the murky waters that exist between what consumers expect from brands and what marketers aspire to provide. It lies in the data, content, delivery and strategy tactics of email marketing. We’re very much focused on addressing this challenge at Adobe.

And that’s why we’re thrilled to share that The Relevancy Group, a market research and advisory services firm focused on email marketing, has recognized Adobe Campaign as a leader in The Relevancy Ring: The ESP Buyer’s Guide – 2016.

The new Relevancy Ring report notes that ESPs must adapt to become “Everychannel Service Providers.” This distinction in comparison to traditional ESPs is important. Adobe’s focus on sophisticated data management and segmentation, journey orchestration and integrations, email at scale, a maturity roadmap for success, and comprehensive services differentiates Adobe from traditional ESPs, many which still aspire to become cross-channel.

Study Highlights

The Relevancy Group conducted a three-month long research process, evaluating marketers’ challenges, needs and aspirations, and how vendor solutions are poised to address them. The evaluation process included collecting and analyzing more than 1,000 data points per vendor.

Adobe Campaign debuted among the vendors in the Leaders Ring, and was cited as one of the few solutions to offer flexible deployment options and vertical use cases. Several of our customers participated in The Relevancy Group’s process, noting they “dig the flexibility” of Adobe Campaign, “the dev team is awesome” and described our platform as “eye-opening in scale.” Our references consistently referred to Adobe Campaign as powerful and flexible, and they see integration with other Adobe Marketing Cloud products, such as Adobe Analytics and Adobe Experience Manager as a big strength.

Additionally, Adobe Campaign was recognized in The Relevancy Ring Client Satisfaction Awards, a measure of client satisfaction across 15 categories. We received awards in seven categories including gold awards for campaign execution, omnichannel marketing and integration capabilities, and silver awards for product innovation, account management, technical services and technical and customer support.

The Relevancy Group’s report is available here.

Adobe Summit 2016

As we gear up for Adobe Summit, March 20-24th in Las Vegas, we will continue to beat the drum on campaign management for the email marketer. Join us at the event for some great in-depth email and cross-channel marketing sessions including thought leadership, tips and tricks and case studies.

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