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Adobe Social – The Answer to Measuring Marketing ROI

Adobe’s latest product, Adobe Social, was rolled out last week and today I was able to get a deep-dive from Lawrence Mak, the Product Marketing Manager for Adobe Social.

The first bit that struck me is that Adobe is probably the most obvious company to build a content consumption & tracking capability, because a lot of the assets used in creating online content comes out of their creative suite of tools. It is not all unlikely that images are Photoshop-ed, videos are edited in Premier and digital collateral are PDF’d before they’re posted for use and consumption on the web – now the Adobe people want to help in tracking the use of those assets.

Success in social media marketing entails the coordination of three online media networks that feed results – owned & operated media, earned media and paid media. Adobe Social connects online marketers back to the business issues that drive profitability and results for the company using these media networks. The reports from Adobe Social deliver relevant metrics down to the campaign level and provide reporting that helps understand visits and revenue from all your marketing resources.

Social is bigger than what happens on social platforms. Even though they only work today on Facebook, Twitter & Google+, each with varying levels of capability, Lawrence told me that they have much broader designs in place to support additional platforms as the platforms APIs are published. Their goal is to provide an enterprise-level tool that integrates and rounds out the last several years of platform acquisitions.

Over the last several years Adobe has been acquiring and updating products from Efficient Frontier/Context Optional, and folding them into the broader Adobe Digital Marketing Suite. Adobe Social provides integration and places them alongside other Adobe tools and suites – all of which finds Adobe software reaching further into the enterprise.

With this release, Adobe is providing a broad set of tools that supports not just online marketers but other throughout the organization, all the way up to the executive suite. The objective is to support the various people in the departments in the drive to business revenue and the overarching business effort to produce online content into meaningful engagement. At the online marketer level however, Adobe Social provides tools that make app building for Facebook as easy as building a PowerPoint. They can use the creative teams output to quickly and easily assemble an interactive online app that can get published to your Facebook page at the click of a button and create the landing page for the owned website just as easy. The outcome of that process is just as easy to track too – with a huge array of reports and dashboards, the Adobe Social tool tells you how well the page did, the campaign did and how well the online marketing performed using the only business metric that matters to the stakeholders – revenue. How they do it is part of their secret sauce, but campaign and post-level metrics are available to show which content is driving actual revenue – kind of tough in this day and age but certainly becoming more prevalent vis-a-vie the likes of Marketo, Hubspot and others. Except the other guys do not have the creative side of things for you.

After the session I understood that they address owned-site development and management, Facebook business page app development / posting & Facebook adverting (sidebar ads & sponsored stories), as well as tweets. They leaving the balance of online advertising (SEM) to Adobe AdLens (not part of the Adobe Social Suite), but like many tools, they do not handle LinkedIn groups, ads or company pages, but neither do most of these kinds of tools.

All in all, I see it as a good, well-developed suite of tools, integrated or at least usable with a number of other Adobe products. With the professional services they offer, Adobe has a great solution for a lot of businesses who need this level of integration between their asset development & management all the way through deployment and tracking in popular social platforms.

Authors note on updates – After posting the original article, it was suggested that the article included statements that were an error or suggested capabilities that were not actually a part of Adobe Social; pardon my enthusiasm & accept the update as proper.

Images Credit – Social Marketing Conversations