Adobe Adds Functionality to its Analytics Cloud

On Wednesday, Adobe enhanced its Analytics Cloud with several updates designed to help businesses glean and act on insights from customer data, including Context-Aware Sessions, Audience Analytics and refinement, and location-based visualization and reporting tools.

Adobe’s Analytics Cloud, part of Adobe’s Experience Cloud, is the "customer intelligence engine" for the enterprise, according to a post on the company’s Direct Marketing Blog. It leverages audience data collected from each of Adobe's cloud offerings to divide a company's customers into segments so they can market to them on various channels.

Context-Aware Sessions, an addition to Adobe's Analysis Workspace visual editing platform, enables end users to define a browsing "session" to get a granular read of each customer's journey as it unfolds within a mobile app. Companies that have mobile apps can use the feature to better understand the kinds of interactions customers are having when they log in, as well as how long it takes them to complete each individual task in the app. If a customer has opened a car company's app, for instance, he might be using it to start his car, which may take seconds; or he may be accessing it to check details about the health of the car, which may take longer. With this addition, users can drill into a user's behavior and engagement to determine how the app experience might be adjusted.

The Audience Analytics feature aims to help companies track audience metrics so they can sharpen their customer profiles and drive better experiences at scale. It uses an integration between Adobe's Analytics and Audience Manager offerings to facilitate a bidirectional flow of data that informs users of each of the solutions. For instance, a marketing team at a publishing firm can use the Adobe Analytics solution to pinpoint audiences that demonstrate higher engagement rates on their content, then place those audiences in the Adobe Audience Manager to launch an ad campaign. When the campaign is over, marketers can place the data back into Adobe Analytics to further refine the audiences for future campaigns.

Data visualization additions to Adobe Analytics enable users to view customer interactions based on their geographic location—as well as the digital channel they were on—when they saw a marketing message. For instance, on a map display, marketers can see whether a promotion has driven more store traffic for a branch located one part of town or another so they can determine where to focus their future efforts.

Nearly two-thirds of the Fortune 100 are Adobe Analytics Cloud customers. Among these are Major League Baseball, Home Depot, MGM, and Holland America Line. The latter two have beta-tested the new features.

In a statement, Aaron Fossum, director of digital analytics at Holland America Line, a cruise trip service provider, said that the Adobe Analytics Cloud has "transformed" its engagement metrics and allowed the company to treat each of its travelers as individuals, rather than profiles:

"In just a few weeks of leveraging Audience Analytics, we’ve been able to improve the efficiency of our direct-response buys by 30 percent, ultimately impacting our bottom line by helping to identify which guests are the most responsive to our marketing activities across channels."

Bill Ingram, vice president of the Adobe Analytics Cloud, said in a statement the new tools aim to give marketing analysis "greater context":

"Adobe is the leader in marketing analytics, with thousands of brands leveraging our tools in unique and advanced ways. We are the only company that provides in-depth behavioral pathing and powerful segmentation that's truly accessible to users at all skill levels, and today we're ensuring that the analysis has even greater context to help drive business success."

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