Adobe hosted the 2015 Digital Marketing Symposium in Singapore on July 30. Close to 1,200 people attended, making it the largest marketing conference in Southeast Asia. Attendance was up nearly 7% from 2014, indicating that more marketers are seeking innovation in digital marketing and more people trust Adobe to provide insight and solutions.
“The reinvention of marketing and technology has led to the reinvention of industry,” says Paul Robson, Adobe APAC President. As an industry leader, Adobe rides the lightning of digital innovation, providing multichannel marketing solutions to integrate data with content in real-time. Adobe understands the ‘pain points’ that digital places upon marketers, but upgrading technology is not enough. If companies want to succeed in tomorrow’s marketing industry, they must change the way their people think about business.
“The business enterprise has two–and only two–basic functions: marketing and innovation,” said Peter Drucker, American patriarch of business consulting. Drucker’s philosophies defined modern ideas of business and have served as marketing canon for many since the mid-1900s. We’ve known about the Four P’s (product, place, price, and promotion) since the Marketing Department Era of the 1960s. The importance of branding has been with us since global marketing exploded in the late 1980s. The digital boom happened 20 years ago. Since then, social media has pushed an ever-increasing emphasis on customer relationship management and quantifiable engagement targets. So, what’s next for marketers? What do you need to know to meet the demands of tomorrow?
“Mobile is the great disrupter,” says Brad Rencher, Adobe Senior Vice President and General Manager of Digital Marketing. “We have the opportunity to delight customers, but also greater risk for disappointment.” The mobile revolution has increased the velocity of digital marketing and created a few unique challenges that stretch the limits of traditional principles.
Wearable mobile technology gives marketers a new level of intimacy with the customer. “To be invited onto a customer’s wrist is something marketers haven’t had to deal with before,” Rencher says. It begs new questions about how frequently and in what manner to interact with customers. Where do we draw the line between having successful targeted marketing and being slightly creepy?
Mobile technology has created innovation in proximity marketing and personalization. The travel industry is leading the way with options such as ‘Mobile Key’ by Starwood Hotels and Resorts. “In more than 150 locations, we have already launched an in-room tablet tailored to each guest. This allows us to know when to send which offers to which guests,” explains Chris Norton, Starwood Vice President of Customer Relationship Management & Channel Intelligence. Mobile is here to stay whether you like it or not.
“We are swimming in devices, swimming in data,” says Shantanu Narayen, Adobe President and CEO, “The challenge for all you marketers is how do you deliver that right digital experience?” In past marketing eras, marketers created the channels by which they reached out to customers. Today, it is the customer who drives those marketing touch points. Your brand is your customer’s experience.
According to Robert Rose, Chief Strategy Officer for the Content Marketing Institute and Author of Experiences: The 7th Era of Marketing, marketing is no longer just one department. It is the engine that drives the entire business through production of content. Businesses must breakdown organizational silos and rethink incentives that prevent collaboration. They must treat marketing content as an asset worth investing in because without it, customers cannot engage with you.
“We have to earn it every day,” urges Rencher, “At every touch point, you either win or lose.” Mobile is projected to surpass desktop globally in approximately 18 months, and digital innovation is spreading around the world. So, there has never been a time with higher demands placed on marketers, nor has there ever been a higher level of competition.
“Global encroachment is coming, so buckle up!” says Tamara Gaffney, Principle Analyst – Adobe Digital Index. “Digital investment is not just a marketing tool. It is a competitive weapon.” Adobe knows that as marketers, your product is marketing. Are you thinking broadly enough about what that product is and how you can develop it and protect it?