Marketers consistently tell me they need help simplifying, measuring and optimizing their ads, particularly across channels. At the same time, they’re looking to squeeze as much efficiency out of their marketing programs as humanly possible. Whether they realize it or not, these two efforts are at odds with one another.

Take a look at this survey response from Forrester Research, Inc. (see blue highlighted box below):

SOURCE: “Making Sense Of The Digital Media Buying Platform Landscape”, Forrester Research, December 7, 2011

The top three responses are entirely about consolidating analytics and media buying platforms into a single, unified workflow.

With the acquisition of Efficient Frontier, Adobe has sent a clear signal to the market that we are going after the opportunity to both simplify measuring and optimizing ad programs AND to increase the efficiency of those programs. Combining the market leader in analytics – Adobe SiteCatalyst – with the market leader in multi-channel advertising technology and the inventor of the market’s most advanced bidding algorithms – Efficient Frontier – Adobe is uniquely positioned to solve this problem.

Adobe AdLens + Adobe SiteCatalyst

Since the acquisition of Efficient Frontier, which we have renamed Adobe AdLens, we have been working on a unique native integration between AdLens and SiteCatalyst.

Adobe AdLens is already well known as one of the best bidding technologies on the market. AdLens consistently beats rules-based or nascent portfolio bidding systems in head to head contests. This is why so many smaller, point-solutions are collecting résumés from PhDs and are feverishly attempting to build more sophisticated bidding platforms.

At Adobe, we’ve long since moved past that phase and we’ve now released an integration that takes our bidding platform to the next level.

Bidding algorithms are significantly improved when they are fed more meaningful data sets. So last year we saw the opportunity to combine advanced bidding algorithms with the massive amounts of data SiteCatalyst collects and we have been building that connection throughout this year.

The way these two products are connected enhance AdLens’ already sophisticated bidding algorithms.

With this integration, all conversion events (e.g. registrations, subscriptions, orders) tracked by the SiteCatalyst analytics tool are available in the AdLens platform as well. In addition to the conversion events, AdLens has access to “micro-conversion” metrics like bounce rate, time spent on site, page views, cart abandonment and much more at the individual click level for all ads. Any new metrics tracked within SiteCatalyst will also be automatically available for reporting and optimization in AdLens.

Additionally, for an advertiser currently using SiteCatalyst, there is no additional work required at the advertiser’s end for AdLens to track conversions. No calling up the analytics pro and having them set up and maintain a data feed, no calling Adobe Client Care when there are problems with that data feed. Advertisers using our native integration don’t have to do anything at all.

We are also passing data back into SiteCatalyst so detailed, keyword-level reports can be run from either AdLens or SiteCatalyst. For thousands of SiteCatalyst clients around the world who depend on it to be their “single version of the truth,” this bi-directional connection is critical and unique in the marketplace.

Thinking Beyond Search…

In addition to connecting analytics to advanced bidding algorithms in a unique way, AdLens has also been staying ahead of the curve with Facebook.

We’ve extended beyond our current Facebook Ads API integration and we now have official access to the Facebook Exchange, which allows marketers to buy ads on Facebook via real-time bidding. The Facebook Exchange integration is a valuable extension of AdLens’ real-time bidding infrastructure because it enables marketers to reach more than 955 million people globally on Facebook. As a result, we have been designated a Strategic Preferred Marketing Developer (PMD) and we are proud to be awarded qualifications for all four of Facebook’s Marketing APIs across all areas of their business – Pages, Ads, Apps and Insights.

Display Ad Targeting – Reaching the Right People, at the Right Time, with the Right Ad

Marketers want the biggest bang for their ad bucks, but the question remains, “Am I reaching the right audience with my ad campaign?” Given all the ads online today and competition for prime ad placement, reaching the right audience with targeted campaigns has never been more important. AdLens, through integration with other Adobe cloud-based digital marketing technologies including Adobe AudienceManager and Adobe Dynamic Ad Targeting, gives marketers the ability to expand display ad targeting and optimization across ad distribution platforms. AudienceManager allows marketers to identify, quantify, and create high-value audience segments to deliver successful ad campaigns with custom creative directed at the people who matter most in given demographics. And with Adobe Dynamic Ad Targeting within AdLens, advertisers can deliver these targeted ads in real-time based on the behavior of segments created in AudienceManager. The end result is improved ad engagement and conversions that drive the ROI marketers need to justify their ad budgets – thanks to AdLens’ access to all major display inventory sources.

Taking Digital Advertising to the Next Level

Long term, as the dominant advertising platform across all major media, we see AdLens fully connected into market-leading analytics and web experience management. Today, we’ve connected our ad-buying platform into our analytics solution in a way that strengthens both offerings. Tomorrow? Stay tuned… In the meantime, check out what AdLens has to offer and feel free to share your feedback as we’re always looking to better our digital marketing solutions to benefit customers.