When Adobe announced social marketing software suite Adobe Social in March, it pegged the availability date as “late 2012.” Late 2012 has arrived, as Adobe Social was released for general availability Thursday.
Adobe Social incorporates technology from Context Optional and Efficient Frontier. Adobe acquired Facebook advertising-management platform Efficient Frontier last November. Six months before that, Efficient Frontier acquired Facebook page-management platform Context Optional.
John Mellor, vice president of strategy and business development for the digital marketing business at Adobe Systems, gave AllFacebook a tour of Adobe Social, and the extremely user-friendly interface was what stood out the most. Navigating the treasure trove of data on social campaigns was very intuitive, and results were displayed in a clear, easy-to-read format.
Mellor described the thought process behind Adobe Social in an interview with AllFacebook:
We started in analytics. We’re very data-driven, very measurement-driven. Adobe started going after social from an analytic standpoint. What are the business results coming from your social activities? We wanted to enable users to take social and make some business sense out of its impact: How do we put this social beast in context with everything else that’s going on?
Social is a part of your campaign strategy. It’s not your only campaign strategy. The best campaigns don’t start or end in social.
Adobe Social Product Marketing Manager Lawrence Mak offered more details on the offering’s capabilities in a blog post:
Gone are the days of generating thousand-cell spreadsheets chock-full of indecipherable tracking codes like “?cid=f8d-k-733-c0e-y27cio4n,” which you have to match to campaign classifications in another spreadsheet, and then manually append the precise campaign-tracking code to the right social media link, each time. Sound familiar? Phew. That’s just not scalable. With Adobe Social, you can automatically track the performance of all social media posts for a campaign and then connect that data to key performance indicators for the business, such as revenue, for reports that will show exactly how much revenue each post drove. And that helps you measure a tangible return on your social investments.
The ability to identify key influencers who can sway customer perception and purchase decisions is a hot topic in social marketing. There are several tools in the market that help businesses identify people who are evangelists that have influence over large, active audiences to spread your messages, which has some value. But at Adobe, we are more interested in measuring actual influence as it relates to your bottom line over potential evangelism. With Adobe Social, you can demonstrate which Twitter follower drove $5,000 of revenue alone because she retweeted your offer — even though she only has 100 followers, a paltry measure of clout by many current standards, pah! You can then leverage that insight to execute social media campaigns that activate more of your true business influencers.
We also think it is important to understand not only what your customers say they want on social channels and in your database profiles, but how your customers actually behave in the real world. Just because I say I like Lady Gaga on my Facebook page doesn’t mean I’m visiting her websites and listening to her music and buying tickets to her concert every day. (I like Britney Spears, too.) When you combine social profile data with behavioral data from your social network, Web, mobile, and advertising channels, you get a much more complete picture of your customer from the point of a social click to check out. Adobe Social’s insight into what your customers are doing on your social channels feeds the Digital Marketing Suite’s multichannel analytics. This offers a unique view of how social media efforts impact purchase decisions and brand value across marketing channels and at each customer touch point.
Social media is no longer an experiment, and it is time for social to grow up. Adobe Social’s ability to create and demonstrate business impact from social media will enable the social marketer to secure a seat at the planning table. Adobe Social helps give the entire business a holistic view of the customer journey and how the social media channel impacts customer behavior and purchase decisions.