“The experience is your brand,” said Brad Rencher, Sr. Vice President and General Manager of Digital Marketing for Adobe, in the opening day Summit keynote. It’s an insight that is pushing companies toward massive transformation at a rapid pace—and not only in terms of marketing technology. The question is becoming: How do we use this technology to deliver experiences that are both connected and consistent?
The answer, reiterated through nearly 200 breakout sessions and new solution announcements, is that marketing needs to “go beyond marketing.”
Of course, technology is constantly evolving to better support that. Adobe announced two new additions to Marketing Cloud—Primetime and Audience Manager—to improve marketers’ tactical ability to deliver connected experiences on a day-to-day basis. Primetime and Audience Manager add a suite of new and improved features to help marketing teams better combine data sources, control ad frequency, and personalize content for increasingly refined audiences.
But these advancements make it clear very quickly that digital marketing isn’t just about tech. In the many breakout sessions, hundreds of brands told stories of how these tools are pushing them to reevaluate how their teams work together to deliver the connected, consistent experiences now possible.
It’s pushing marketing closer to the core of the company. Siloes are coming down, and organizations are orchestrating themselves around understanding their customer and delivering them what they need. It paints a clearer picture than ever that the CMO role is expanding well beyond its scope from even just a few years ago. Now, every department has a role in delivering brand-building experiences.
It can seem like a daunting task—technology innovations are so much more exciting than figuring out how to transform your organization and your network of roles, workflows, and skills. But, like Nate Silver said in his keynote, “Sometimes the real story is harder to tell than the interesting story.”
The exciting thing is, once you figure out how to find the real story and tell it, possibilities open up that are much more interesting—for the work we do as marketers, and the customers we want to connect with.