Adobe CEO: Make the digital economy personalAdobe CEO: Make the digital economy personal

“All businesses must redefine how we engage with customers and deliver digital experiences at unprecedented scale,” said Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen in his opening remarks at Adobe Summit today. Summit, one of the largest in-person events in the marketing tech space — it drew over 16,000 attendees to Las Vegas in 2019 — opened today as a virtual event for the third consecutive year.

Adobe is heavily focused on e-commerce and Narayen noted a record number of billion-dollar online sales days last year, with an anticipated trillion dollars in online sales in 2022 in the U.S. alone. Since the onset of the pandemic, Narayen said, people have learned to do many things in the digital world they once only did in the physical world. “This enormous shift to digital was a catalyst for people to reimagine what the future might look like, from reflecting on life choices and reinventing themselves with new jobs and new businesses to exploring new ways to monetize their content and creativity.”

We have seen a rekindling of interest in the web as an immersive experience, Narayen said. “The ongoing conversation on the metaverse reflects the fact that the distinction between what people do in the physical and virtual worlds is blurring.”

The challenge is to “make the digital economy personal,” he continued. Experiences need to be real-time and delivered at unprecedented scale.

Innovations and integrations. Among the key platform announcements at Summit:

Integrations between Creative Cloud and Experience Cloud are enabling immersive, metaverse-style experiences for brands like Coca-Cola and NASCAR. Among the innovations previewed at Summit: Adobe Substance 3D Modeler for 3D creation and sharing (currently in beta).Adobe Experience Cloud for healthcare, supporting enhanced digital experiences from healthcare providers.Enhancements to Adobe Sensei, the AI engine, including sales opportunity predictions, cross-channel budget optimization, intelligent product recommendations and budget forecasting and allocation.

Why we care. Adobe is a veteran software company, celebrating its 40th anniversary at the end of this year. It was also, as Narayen noted in his keynote, the first to launch what we soon came to call a marketing cloud. The Adobe Experience Platform now extends beyond marketing to support sales and service too.

With its roots in content creation, Adobe should be well-positioned to develop tools that support metaverse-type experiences. And note Adobe’s interest in the healthcare space, a space that has recently attracted the attention of enterprise CDPs like ActionIQ and Treasure Data. It’s a huge potential market and marketing tech has its eyes set on it.

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