Not to sin, (well, okay we won’t speak for EVERYONE) but to fully immerse ourselves in all things Adobe. And if that’s a sin, then call us guilty because we are PUMPED to kick off this week and learn more about the latest from Adobe and to connect with our colleagues and Adobe family from around the world.
It’s a good thing it’s only the first day and we behaved ourselves last night because we were up crazy early to kick things off with our Adobe Practice Meeting. We can’t tell you what went on in there, because this is Vegas and you can’t show all your cards. Just kidding, we ate eggs and talked about how awesome we are. Seriously. Our Adobe practice is growing at an insane rate, both by humans and by revenue, and we patted ourselves on the back and went back for more bacon, our competitive fires burning.
Stomachs full, we waddled over to the Summit Opening General Session to OFFICIALLY kick things off. And man, does Adobe know how to put on a show! We watched in awe as the most incredible graphics and animations set to kickin’ music opened the show (feeling pretty embarrassed right now by that clip art-enhanced deck we were so proud of last week) and out of the music and lights descended Shantanu Narayen, CEO of Adobe, on a rainbow unicorn. Okay, that didn’t happen, but it would have been a fitting entrance for a guy as cool as Shantanu. Maybe next year, Adobe?
Anyway, Shantanu opened with a reminder to all of us that the fundamental truth and challenge for businesses today is that people buy experiences, not products. Which is good news for Adobe, because, as we were about to hear – Adobe is in the experience business.
Adobe EVP Brad Rencher, up next, shared with us a recent study that showed that making experience your business is good for business, so we need to change from being experience thinkers to being experience makers. (Hang on, we’re taking notes about how to do this).
Speaking of experience makers, next up was a guy who is taking being in the experience business quite literally – John O’ Sullivan, managing director of Tourism Australia. You may know them as the makers of that sweet Danny McBride/Chris Hemsworth ad. He gave us the download on their digital transformation that is helping them achieve their goal of making Australia the most desirable and memorable place to visit on the planet. How do they do it?
They put the customer at the center of everything they do, and they use insights from Adobe Analytics to make better decisions. Also, they have koalas, and no one else does, so #winning. We’re wishing we had Adobe Analytics to tell us to make better decisions about what we’ve done with our lives so we can afford that vacay to Australia, but we’re picking up what he’s putting down.
Next up - Nichole Giamona, group product manager, Adobe Experience Cloud Platform, taunted us with yet another vacation idea – a fab trip to NYC – as she walked us through how Marriott uses data to create their experience system of record, and uses that data to solve for customer pain points. It was a prime example of how unified data management, data science and CX can come together to create opt-in personalization. Did you know? 80% of insights problems are with data management. Better get on that ASAP.
Adobe Cloud Platform is expanding, with more tools for data scientists and developers! You heard it here first – all Adobe Experience Cloud customers get a free Cloud Platform Auditor to check the performance of their data collection systems. This will be very convenient for data insights teams. Win-win.
Eric Matisoff, Data Scientist and Analytics Evangelist extraordinaire, gave us a sneak peek of Adobe DataExplorer, which will help users import unstructured data into Audience Manager. And coming soon – AttributionIQ, which will help Adobe Analytics users move beyond last-click attribution to enable brands to segment their customer data. It’s about time!
These next two were crowd faves: Adobe Advertising Cloud collaborates with designers in new ways so they can focus on building beautiful ads and impactful messages. You can target/de-dupe across all channels, create personalized ads, AND launch—all in one platform. And with its super-easy UI, we think this is gonna be a game-changer for sure.
Time to talk Adobe Marketing Cloud. We were treated to an incredible demo showing how Mercedes-Benz uses Marketing Cloud to create, execute, and optimize beautiful customer experiences. Now, Experience Manager and Photoshop integration comes together seamlessly.
Did you know? When Adobe went to 100% programmatic for their own marketing, impressions doubled, and Customer Acquisition Cost went down 50%. Fifty. Five-zero. We are impressed.
Adobe Email Message Designer lets marketers create richer and more responsive email campaigns to deploy in Adobe Campaigns without writing ANY code and you get unified e-mail analytics. This is a HUGE step forward in user empowerment for business.
In other brand-new news, Brad Rencher is back to tell us about Adobe Experience League. What’s that, you ask? AEL seeks to bring customers together around community, best practices, and adoption of Adobe features. It provides intelligence guides and supporting content, on-demand videos, webinars, and a knowledge base, all to help you understand the Adobe technology. Sign us up!
We were then treated to a presentation from Coca-Cola on how the 130-year old company thinks holistically about connecting content to experiences: leveraging archives, localizing packaging, and blending physical with digital via AR. Images and ads, product design can change through time, but storytelling is timeless when it’s at the center of it all. David Godsman, chief digital officer at Coca-Cola outlined an incredible five-year digital transformation effort ending in co-creation by their customers. Cue impressive stat: Coca-Cola interacts with 18% of HUMANITY each day.
We finished the morning with Adobe CTO, Abhay Parasnis, who gave us the latest on Adobe Sensei, an array of AI technology that it is already adding to software applications for creating and publishing documents, and for analyzing and tracking web and mobile application performance. According to Parasnis, AI represents the most profound transformational shift in computing for the next decade and AI and machine learning will completely transform enterprises. What makes Sensei unique is its approach of blending the science of data with the art of human creativity. Consider us your willing students, Sensei.
Over in the session rooms, we were excited to see DD’s own Apurva Pangam and Dave Grimm of Illumina speak on Digital DNA: How AEM Helps Illumina Sequence Seamless Customer Experiences. Illumina, a global leader in genomics, has created an industry-leading digital experience across channels and international borders. As one of the most innovative and fastest growing companies in the world, Illumina desired a marketing and commerce solution that would create new business channels, enable differentiated self-service experiences, and provide the long-term scalability needed to compete in the genetic sequencing space. We partnered with Illumina to define and execute the vision for a leading digital platform built on Adobe Experience Manager. Illumina internationalized this mobile-first, seamless platform to enable extensible, automated content roll-outs & translation workflows, resulting in more engaging and targeted digital experiences and greater control of its growing brand. Did you know? 50% of customer and tech service people at Illumina have a Ph.D, which means they probably aren’t discussing the Kardashians at their water cooler.
And that’s just what we’ve been doing. ALL. DAY. LONG. Giving demos, schmoozing clients, having media interviews, and fueling up on lattes. Oh, and our own Senior Art Director Marry Tonnu did a live painting demo right from our booth! Not that we’re biased, but our booth is by far the most eye-catching. BIG shout out to our insanely talented designers, Catalina Castro and Nicole Stormer for their incredible work. It’s so pretty that we had a visit from the Adobe Exec Team, including Shantanu Narayen, Matt Thompson and Brad Rencher. Feeling super important right about now. They like us, they really like us! :: sobs uncontrollably ::
There really are no words for the evening’s festivities except OH MY GOD BECKY.
This really happened. Over at LAVO, the Deloitte Digital '90s throwback party featuring Sir Mix-a-Lot was LIT. We might have screamed the lyrics to ‘Posse on Broadway’. We might have jumped up and down so hard we caused mild ankle sprain. We also might have (okay we definitely did) DANCED ON STAGE WITH SIR MIX-A-LOT and also there was a dancing barista but that’s a story for another time. Anyway. It was OFF THE HOOK. DD knows digital, but we also know how to throw a party and that’s very important to consider when choosing who you want to go through a total digital transformation with. The company that rages to Sir Mix-a-Lot, or that other company who didn’t have a party? Yeah, we thought so.