As part of the Adobe Partner program, various sessions and events are organized to keep partners updated on the latest features of the Adobe Marketing Cloud platform. Best practices are also talked about in order to deliver high quality solutions to clients that invest in Adobe’s digital experience management solutions.

On February 15th, Shine Solutions was invited to an Adobe Innovation Session with a focus on managing the Customer Journey in a cross-channel marketing environment. This is a summary of what we heard that day.

Scott Rigby: Customer Journey Mapping

Scott (Head of Digital Transformation – Adobe) started off the event by introducing a framework to plan the customer journey. This involves identifying the target audiences (I suspect you’d focus on your high value segments first), mapping out the various online and offline touch points throughout the customer journey, and finishing with identifying the technologies necessary. Mapping out the customer journey early-on enables businesses to have an accurate customer profile that can be used to drive digital experiences. Scott also introduced Adobe eXperience Design (beta), which can help marketers in the customer journey mapping process.

Bruce Swann: Customer Profiling & Email Personalisation

Bruce (Senior Product Marketing Manager – Adobe) followed with a presentation on customer profiling and what he mentions are the pillars of a successful cross-marketing campaign: Data, Content and Delivery. When building customer profiles, there are obvious challenges like merging profile fragments, collecting data across various channels and achieving acceptable match rates. All these challenges are important to tackle because they enable businesses to have data that they can trust – which avoids guesswork and ultimately establishes conversations with their customers instead of simple communications. The great thing about data that can be trusted is that business can not only understand their customers but they can start anticipating customer needs and behaviors, which is extremely valuable.

Businesses usually have to deal with data that is silo’d between channels so Adobe Campaign,  one of the Marketing Cloud products, can help businesses tackle the challenges of building reliable customer profiles. It enables marketers to load data from multiple sources and use score-based matching rules to build profiles that can be used for email deliveries or any other type of marketing campaign.

The average adult receives around 100 emails a day so it’s a challenge for marketers to ensure their email deliveries actually get read. For this, Adobe Campaign can help marketers create compelling, personal and useful content by sending  context-aware emails. Adobe recommends the use of a customer’s location and the time of the delivery to be taken into account when creating content.

Brent Burgess/Anthony Marquette: IAG Case Study

Bruce’s talk was followed by a case study from the Australian insurance parent company IAG. Increasing pressure from smaller and more nimble competitors forced IAG to rethink their approach to marketing. Brent (Head of Digital Technology) and Anthony (Marketing Automation Platform Lead) shared their experience revamping their customer journey using tools such as Adobe Campaign and Adobe Experience Manager to drive their digital marketing. A tremendous amount of knowledge was shared around the challenges they faced and the need to put People at the center of their endeavor.

Bruce Swann: Digitally Augmented Journeys

Bruce got back on stage to introduce us to the concept of “phygital”, which is all about digitally enhanced physical touch points. Apparently, 54% of store sales are influenced by Digital. This means there is a tremendous opportunity to weave digital into a customer’s journey to not only provide delightful experiences but also affect the bottom line. The example Bruce gave was purchasing an item from a store. Customers could receive push notifications triggered by beacons, be sent offers directly to their mobile by texting a phone number, or even purchase an item from a sales’ associate’s iPad and avoiding the checkout queues. I think a great example of this is the recently opened Amazon store in Seattle. There is no doubt Amazon is collecting all this data on customer’s shopping habits to enhance their customer profiles.

Mark Szulc: Let’s get phygital

Mark (Principal Solution Consultant – Adobe) lined up a couple of live demos for us, one being an integration between Amazon Echo and Adobe Campaign. The idea was that an Amazon Echo device could be placed in hotel room. The Amazon Echo device would send voice commands off to Amazon Alexa to process the voice command. An AWS Lambda is then triggered to fetch the requested information from Adobe Campaign using Adobe I/O, which is a tool used to integrate Adobe products with third party applications. Mark was able to request membership status and remaining points on his profile stored within Adobe Campaign. Neat!

Conclusion

The importance of actionable data is a recurring theme throughout Adobe’s marketing presentations. It’s clear that it empowers businesses to build customer profiles they can trust in, and use this information to deliver engaging customer experiences. The challenge lies in being able to collect this information across various channels and measure how experiences are performing once deployed so that true insights can be derived.

I really enjoyed this Adobe Innovation Session. There were some great thoughts around how Digital is impacting the customer journey. Personally, I would like to see some figures around customer engagement with chat bots and how they could potentially fit into the customer journey. Maybe we will see something more on this next year, as chat bots enter the mainstream and become recognised as another potential channel for digital marketing.

Written by Michael Leroy

Consultant at Shine Solutions and Adobe Certified AEM Lead Developer

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