We live in inter­est­ing times when it comes to our rela­tion­ship with other peo­ple through their dig­i­tal devices. Increas­ingly, the inter­ac­tions, con­ver­sa­tions and bonds com­pa­nies form with their cus­tomers are hap­pen­ing dig­i­tally. What started as a trickle to web­sites through desk­top com­put­ers has grown into a stam­pede across glass screens of all shapes and sizes on devices that are tucked neatly in back pock­ets, span a wall at a venue or are strapped to our wrists.

On the heels of Forrester’s Forum for Cus­tomer Expe­ri­ence Professionals, where the theme was “Why Good Is Not Good Enough”—highlighting the com­pet­i­tive era for cus­tomer expe­ri­ence as a brand differentiator—Forrester has released its inau­gural Wave report for Dig­i­tal Expe­ri­ence Deliv­ery Plat­forms. While it listed no Lead­ers, we’re hon­ored that Adobe was ref­er­enced as a “pio­neer” among “Strong Per­form­ers” and posi­tioned high­est in cur­rent offering, among 13 vendors, with “best-of breed solutions”(and also among the top two ven­dors in strategy).

While a lot is chang­ing as the world shifts towards dig­i­tal, it’s the mega-trends that busi­nesses need to pay atten­tion to in order to sur­vive and thrive in the long-term. I think what’s most sig­nif­i­cant about this new For­rester Wave™ report is that it spot­lights the need for com­pa­nies to “focus on cre­at­ing and deliv­er­ing rel­e­vant, cross-channel, con­tex­tual expe­ri­ences crit­i­cal to the vis­i­tor at that moment of their cus­tomer journey.”

It’s a vision we believe in and one we’re col­lab­o­rat­ing on with com­pa­nies to achieve via Adobe Mar­ket­ing Cloud, which brings the abil­ity to under­stand cus­tomer con­text and per­son­al­ize con­tent delivery. Adobe Mar­ket­ing Cloud includes a broad set of lead­ing solu­tions to sup­port dig­i­tal expe­ri­ence deliv­ery, such as Adobe Expe­ri­ence Man­ager for web and app expe­ri­ence man­age­ment; Adobe Cam­paign for cross-channel cam­paign man­age­ment; Adobe Ana­lyt­ics for advanced, real-time web and mobile ana­lyt­ics; Adobe Tar­get for A/B and mul­ti­vari­ate test­ing, tar­get­ing and opti­miza­tion; and Adobe Social for social marketing.

Stand­ing on the Shoul­der of Leaders

Any­one who has tried to deliver uni­fied dig­i­tal expe­ri­ences real­izes it’s the ulti­mate team sport. Peo­ple with dif­fer­ent skill sets across cre­ative, mar­ket­ing and IT need to come together to focus on the desires and aspi­ra­tions of the customer.

Same is true for the tech­nolo­gies that must sup­port this.

Our team has strived hard to not only offer best-of-breed solu­tions for each dis­tinct part of a dig­i­tal expe­ri­ence deliv­ery plat­form as iden­ti­fied by For­rester, but also how they work together with com­mon cus­tomer pro­files, data insights and con­tent assets. We believe this lat­est recog­ni­tion by For­rester is part of a longer jour­ney of being rec­og­nized as a “Leader” in dis­tinct cat­e­gories within dig­i­tal expe­ri­ence deliv­ery (for exam­ple, Web Con­tent Man­age­ment, Web Ana­lyt­ics, Online Test­ing, and Data Man­age­ment Plat­forms). This week’s report is about being able to make sure these com­po­nents work together in a uni­fied manner, as well. Our goal and vision is to offer cus­tomer choice in best-of-breed solu­tions paired with the power of a plat­form. For­rester noted that, “Strategically, Adobe dif­fer­en­ti­ates with its vision of the con­nec­tive tis­sue between its tools, and its aim for sin­gle cus­tomer profile.”

Pio­neers Never Stop Innovating

I just returned from a world­wide tour of some of the brands and agency part­ners using Adobe Mar­ket­ing Cloud for dig­i­tal expe­ri­ence deliv­ery. I always get ener­gized see­ing and hear­ing about the inno­va­tions our com­mu­nity is pio­neer­ing. And as part of this com­mu­nity, we can’t stop innovating, either.

In fact, we’ve been busy since the For­rester eval­u­a­tions for this Wave report ear­lier in the year. Since, we’ve released sig­nif­i­cant new capa­bil­i­ties in our offer­ing,  includ­ing richer sup­port for author­ing, mea­sur­ing and opti­miz­ing mobile apps, increased usabil­ity through visual work­flows and machine learn­ing in tar­get­ing and attri­bu­tion mod­el­ing in a cus­tomer journey, and a set of core ser­vices such as the Mas­ter Mar­ket­ing Pro­file and Shared Assets.

More than Tech­nol­ogy Solu­tions Are Needed

While we strive to inno­vate on the tech­nol­ogy, we real­ize the chal­lenge of deliv­er­ing dig­i­tal expe­ri­ences that are rel­e­vant to cus­tomers extends beyond the tech­nol­ogy to a trans­for­ma­tion in skills, orga­ni­za­tion and lead­er­ship. The indus­try also needs guid­ance and best practices.

Work­ing with thou­sands of brands and the best agen­cies world­wide affords us the abil­ity to share learn­ings and con­nect the com­mu­nity of dig­i­tal mar­keters, strate­gists and prac­ti­tion­ers. We saw thou­sands of atten­dees at our North Amer­ica and EMEA Sum­mits this year, and follow-on regional Sym­po­siums will con­nect even more to share best prac­tices and insights on dig­i­tal expe­ri­ence deliv­ery and marketing.

Pri­mary research such as the Adobe Dig­i­tal Index and the “Dig­i­tal Road­block: Mar­keters strug­gle to rein­vent them­selves” (.PDF) survey also con­tribute to the knowl­edge around this rapid shift to dig­i­tal, where we are and where we must be.

We look for­ward and are com­mit­ted to the con­tin­ued jour­ney. Here’s to the inter­est­ing and excit­ing times ahead! In the mean­time, we encour­age you to check out a com­pli­men­tary copy of the For­rester report here.