Adobe Announces Strategic Partnership with SAP, Touts Updates to Marketing Cloud at Adobe Digital Marketing Summit (Video Interview)

SALT LAKE CITY—The Adobe Digital Marketing Summit kicked off earlier today with an opening keynote hosted by Brad Rencher, the senior vice president of digital marketing business at Adobe. The keynote had no shortage of big announcements, headlined by news of Adobe's strategic partnership with SAP, delivered by Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen and Vishal Sikka, a member of the executive board at SAP.

"The strategic partnership between Adobe and SAP will bring together the office of the CMO and the office of the CIO," Narayen said. Together, the two companies plan to launch joint solutions in the area of big data analytics, and transform customer data into actionable insight more efficiently. "Big data is dead if there is no thread connecting it. That's why together, the Adobe Marketing Cloud, hybris, and SAP HANA can be hugely impactful," Sikka added.

Rencher also revealed several key updates to the Adobe Marketing Cloud, including the capability to create a single profile, a single source of content, and a single sign-on process that seamlessly integrates across all six solutions within the Marketing Cloud: Adobe Analytics, Adobe Campaign, Adobe Target, Adobe Social, Adobe Media Optimizer, and Adobe Experience Manager. The announcement earned an extended round of applause from the audience. "We know this is going to be a game changer," Rencher said.

The single profile functionality—called Master Marketing Profile—will provide an actionable single view of the customer and allow for the delivery of contextually relevant and personalized content across channels in real time, while the single content repository—called Shared Assets—will centralize creative assets so that marketers can save time and build cohesion between various channel executions of their campaigns by leveraging the Adobe Creative Cloud.

"As customers, our tolerance for bad experiences is extremely low and our expectations are extremely high," Narayen said. "Successful real-time enterprise will require every system in that enterprise to be interconnected and integrated, and putting the Creative Cloud and Marketing Cloud together is what makes the magic happen," he added.

During the keynote, Rencher also touted updates to Adobe Experience Manager, including improvements to it sites, assets, and apps functionalities. Sites, for example, improves performance by allowing Web sites to "go live 50 percent faster with the new template, while new content insight gives [transparency] of the value of site content," Loni Stark, director of product and industry marketing at Adobe, explained in a separate briefing.

Apps were the central focus during the keynote, however—through a partnership with PhoneGap, Adobe Experience Manager's improved app feature enables Web developers to use PhoneGap to build customer-facing apps backed by enterprise support from Adobe and allows marketers to control the app experience instantly with a variety of authoring tools, Rencher explained. He then invited vice president of engineering at Adobe, David Nuescheler, to introduce the improvements.

Neuscheler's demonstration of a new drag and drop capability that allows marketers to change images or other content within an app and watch it update across user devices within seconds earned another rousing round of applause from the crowd. "It's my job to impress you," Neuscheler quipped.

"This is really the first mobile app development program for both developers and marketers. It caters to their different needs and gives enterprises the ability to deliver relevant experiences across apps and other changes with shared content, data and marketing profiles," Stark added during the briefing.

Adobe's mobile marketing solution now also includes iBeacon support, Rencher said, making Adobe the first "mobile provider to support measurement and targeting"

Rounding out a series of conversations with Adobe customers including Sephora, Audi, and REI, Kickstarter's CEO Yancey Strickler wrapped up the day's presentations with a reminder of the power of technology to influence society. "It's not just about giving people the tools and technology they need to make something happen," he said. "It's about what they do with those things that's truly exciting."

Adobe also recently announced an update to its Adobe Analytics offering within the Adobe Marketing Cloud. Jeff Allen, director of Analytics Product Marketing for the Adobe Marketing Cloud, shared the news in the video interview below.


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