We’ve all been there, that awk­ward ado­les­cent phase. For­tu­nately, most of us, but not all of us (you know who you are) grow out of it. Social mar­ket­ing is no dif­fer­ent. After an awk­ward ado­les­cent phase, social is becom­ing a grown-up con­tribut­ing mem­ber of busi­ness. Just like those year­book pho­tos that we hope will never sur­face — with the mul­lets, braces, and unfor­tu­nate “why-did-I-ever-wear-that” wardrobe com­bi­na­tions — so has it been with social. Like my two high-school friends who didn’t want to leave it all behind and cried on grad­u­a­tion night, social doesn’t have a choice; it has to grow up. Social must mature from fuzzy met­rics to real busi­ness impact and rev­enue, because that is the influ­ence met­ric that mat­ters most to businesses.

Our cus­tomers rep­re­sent the top brands in every ver­ti­cal mar­ket, and they’ve lived it. They have been invest­ing in the future of social since they saw its poten­tial to cre­ate more mean­ing­ful expe­ri­ences for and authen­ti­cally con­nect to con­sumers. Our customer’s drive to deal with this new real­ity is the rea­son we built Adobe Social. Our fun­da­men­tal belief behind our strat­egy is that social mar­ket­ing has to evolve in the fol­low­ing ways.

First, social media has to mature from being run by intu­ition, intan­gi­ble met­rics, or immea­sur­able cam­paigns. Just because social feels intu­itive doesn’t mean you can run it intu­itively. Imag­ine report­ing on your search cam­paigns by telling your CMO that cus­tomers really “like” your key­words, or that sen­ti­ment around your key­words is pos­i­tive. There’s value in being liked for sure, but it’s clear that we must par­lay that pop­u­lar­ity into busi­ness results. It is time to under­stand both the direct and indi­rect effects social has on all aspects of the busi­ness. These fun­da­men­tal insights make all the difference.

Sec­ond, social media is often lim­ited to what hap­pens on any one given social plat­form. Your social strat­egy should not end with the start of a con­ver­sa­tion. That’s just where the oppor­tu­ni­ties to learn from your cus­tomers begin. The next step is to put social in con­text with search, dis­play, email, mobile, web­sites and other mar­ket­ing chan­nels. With all of this infor­ma­tion, data and pro­grams have to con­nect, make sense together and be part of a broader ini­tia­tive and plat­form. Oth­er­wise, social will remain in a silo and will fail to be all it can and should be.

Today, we announce the imme­di­ate avail­abil­ity of Adobe Social. Built from a strong foun­da­tion in ana­lyt­ics and stacked with social lis­ten­ing, social man­age­ment and pub­lish­ing capa­bil­i­ties, I can’t help but get excited for our cus­tomers to use it every time I see the live prod­uct at work. The solu­tion gives mar­keters the best and most com­plete set of action­able data avail­able to cap­ture a com­plete snap­shot of busi­ness, and how social plays a role in brand uplift, con­ver­sion, rev­enue, etc. This is another solu­tion we are proud to offer our customers.

With Adobe Social as the newest mem­ber of the Adobe Dig­i­tal Mar­ket­ing Suite, our cus­tomers have the abil­ity to do deep analy­sis, rich cus­tomer seg­men­ta­tion and act on social intel­li­gence across the cus­tomer jour­ney, and across chan­nels and devices. With it, we empower social to drive real busi­ness impact and rev­enue as social breaks out of its silo and becomes a key piece of a brand’s dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing mix. I’m excited to hear your thoughts on the prod­uct. Let us know what you think.

Read more about Adobe Social and why we are so excited about the pos­si­bil­i­ties for our cus­tomers here.