Adobe Summit, THE digital marketing conference, is set for March 4-8 in Salt Lake City Utah. If you need help to convince your boss to get you there, we have a letter you can use, or just send her this video. It’s a good reminder that Summit is all about adding to your skillset, and not about building your buzzword dictionary.
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“You can’t prove advertising really works.” “Marketing is all gut, there’s no science to it.” “The marketing department is a cost center, not a revenue driver.” As marketers, we’ve been hearing this for decades. And even as new marketing channels and technologies have arrived on the scene – including many that savvy digital marketers see as game-changers – new doubts and stigmas have arrived with them.
There’s never been a better time to be a marketer. That’s how I see it. The creative tools we have at our disposal make it easier than ever to turn a great idea into something real. New technology has given us new ways to connect with customers and measure the impact of our work. Marketing matters more than ever.
But not everyone is convinced. According to a recent study by The Fournaise Marketing Group, more than 70% of CEOs believe marketers are too disconnected from business results. The view from consumers isn’t much better. A new study just released by Adobe shows 68% of those surveyed find online ads “annoying.” “Distracting,” “invasive” and “creepy” were not far behind. What’s more, a recent article making the rounds in marketing circles calls for the death of the CMO position because, among other reasons, “Marketing impact is often hard to measure… …to know whether all those millions of dollars spent have led to an increase in real sales.”
This is nonsense. And Adobe is calling BS.
Today, we launched a brand new marketing campaign we’re calling “Metrics, not myths.” Our approach is to identify top myths about digital marketing that plague brands, agencies, chief marketing officers and CEOs and turn them on their head — with irony, humor, a provocative point of view and proof.
Our first myth, “Marketing is BS” runs in The New York Times, Wall Street Journal and numerous online outlets today. Other myths – like “Social Media is Worthless” and “Marketers Hate Big Data” – will roll out in the coming days and weeks. The whole campaign will be bolstered with a robust social campaign, some fun videos and more.
I hope you’ll pardon our French, but we want this campaign to be honest in capturing both the passion and genuine frustration marketers feel when their contributions are undervalued and they’re told the impact of their work isn’t measureable. As a company that’s served marketers and designers for 30 years, Adobe feels their pain. As a CMO who spends 74% of her own marketing budget on digital, I know better. Marketing’s impact can be measured. Creativity and data can work beautifully together. We’re willing to prove it.
Digital marketing can work. More importantly – with so many eyeballs and so much opportunity moving online, to mobile, to social – digital marketing has to work. As a career marketer, I feel strongly about this. If you agree, I hope you’ll join the conversation. After all, there’s never been a better time to bust a few myths. There’s never been a better time to be a marketer.
Ann Lewnes is Chief Marketing Officer at Adobe. Follow her on Twitter at @alewnes
For More Information:
- See Adobe’s Click Here: The State of Online Advertising Survey
- Read about Adobe’s vision for Marketing & Creativity in the Cloud from Adobe CTO Kevin Lynch
- Learn more about Adobe’s Marketing Cloud and Digital Marketing Solutions from Brad Rencher
- See the “Metrics, not myths.” campaign in action.
- Join the conversation and help bust a few myths #MetricsNotMyths
The success of any marketing campaign boils down to choices decision-makers must make every day. From the most simple to the most complex, digital marketers have a myriad of decisions to make that have the potential to define, or in more dramatic cases, redefine best business practices. These decisions include two of the most essential indicators of marketing success:
1) Engaging with customers in a personal and authentic way
2) Driving real and measurable business impact
An area of marketing where this is most clear is digital advertising.
Digital advertising is like having a bunch of spinning toy tops to manage. Which one should be tended to first – search, display or social media? Which will provide the best bang for your advertising buck? How do you keep multiple channels going at the same time? The challenge of effectively managing online ad campaigns across multiple channels is one I have heard our customers complain about for years – one that is exacerbated by new, bright and shiny digital channels. Just take social media for example. According to an article yesterday in the Wall Street Journal, Facebook’s world-wide ad revenue alone is expected to hit $3.8 billion with its share of display ad revenue growing 16.3% in 2011 and 19.5% in 2012. (In case you haven’t heard, social media could be big.) And social media is just one of the dozens of channels the marketer must consider to keep their advertising campaigns humming along.
What’s more, marketers must take into account fundamental changes in the industry as ad budgets continue to shift rapidly to digital channels which are projected to be 26% of ad spend in 2016 according to Forrester Research. To justify and even accelerate this shift to digital, marketers must clearly understand and prove the business impact of their digital initiatives.
Taking the guesswork out of digital advertising is the task we enthusiastically tackle with today’s news of Adobe’s definitive agreement to acquire Efficient Frontier, a leader in optimizing multi-channel and auction-based digital advertising across search, display and social media. With Efficient Frontier, Adobe takes another step towards being the standard for the way marketers create, manage, execute, measure and optimize their marketing and advertising campaigns. Efficient Frontier technology will provide an automated, highly customizable, and algorithmically driven solution to help our customers make better, faster, and more informed decisions to drive effective advertising campaigns.
For our customers, this is nothing short of fantastic news. We are empowering the marketing team to optimize paid search, make informed social ad buying decisions, see the real ROI of social media channels through a social engagement platform from Context Optional, and harness the power of real-time bidding technology for display advertising. In the end, our customers will be able to standardize their digital advertising initiatives on our independent platform for digital ad buying and optimization – making the task of managing those spinning tops easier than ever.
I couldn’t be more excited to offer marketers this powerful solution for managing search, display and social media in today’s digital world. The Efficient Frontier team will be welcomed to the Adobe family as a key addition to the world-class team and help us continue to build on the strong technology stack that makes up our powerful Adobe Digital Marketing Suite and our customers will reap the benefits.