What’s new & what’s not: notes from Adobe Cross-Channel Marketing Forum



August 1, 2016 | 3 min read

It was great to see how far cross-channel marketing capabilities and technology solutions have come at Adobe’s Cross-Channel Marketing Forum in London.

David Burnand, Head of Marketing, Northern Europe for Adobe Systems, opened the conference under the theme of connecting the dots. And as the presentations from practitioners, researchers, and solutions providers showed, a lot more dots have been connected within the last 10 years.

Ten years ago leading direct-marketing campaign management professionals at large banks or telecoms would already be saying that they had nailed cross-channel marketing: they were already combining data from 10 to 15 channels for targeting cross-channel campaigns.

But so much has improved and become easier since those days.

Integration of digital behavioral data

  • Then: The 15 channels had a big gaping hole, namely digital behavioral data from the website was almost always missing in the data warehouse.
  • Today: Adobe’s Marketing Cloud demo at the recent event showed beautifully how Adobe Analytics data can be combined with data coming from Adobe Campaign and data from other systems such as CRM and Clicktale (Now Contentsquare). Marketing flows can be defined using these combined data elements.

Shared customer segments

  • Then: There were on-premises campaign management systems designed to segment all customer data centrally and decide who gets what marketing offer. But if you had a heterogeneous environment with multiple analytics and targeting solutions, located in separate facilities – or even some of them hosted on demand – then segmentation would be silo’d to each environment
  • Today: As Adobe’s demo showed, segments could be leveraged across multiple of the Adobe Marketing Cloud modules. Meanwhile, Clicktale is integrated with Adobe to leverage those segments as well. That way, marketers and analysts can seamlessly continue analysis from Adobe into Clicktale for the same set of customers.

Visibility into customer’s actual web experiences

  • Then: digital marketers would complain that what they really wanted were answers but all they got were reports. Meanwhile, analysts would complain that they were sending around reports, but nobody was reading them let alone acting on them. And in this vacuum the Hippo’s opinion often prevailed over data
  • Today: There would be no excuse for that kind of complaint anymore. As the featured customer presentation at the Adobe event beautifully showed, today’s visual insights into actual customer experiences from solutions such as Clicktale achieve what data alone couldn’t. By seeing what customers experience, the organization can quickly align around customers’ actual needs and the focus becomes how quickly they can do what’s best for customers. And what’s best for customers is usually also best for the business driving millions of additional wins and savings.

Shared content for personalization

  • Then: Content for use in site personalization lived in separate systems. Vendor solution demos usually involved a leap of faith that all the content creation process would be happening alongside the “marketing” system,
  • Today: Adobe’s demo showed very nicely how content defined in the Adobe Cloud could be reused in Adobe Campaign emails and for Adobe Target website personalization. Meanwhile, Clicktale’s integration with Adobe Experience Manager enables content designers to overlay engagement analytics with just a few clicks. This way left brain and right brain marketing can work together to design experiences that work better.

On the other hand, some things never change

Then as today these capabilities are only as good as the people behind the scenes that leverage them to derive better actions and drive better experiences for their customers. 

If Adobe and Clicktale can make the job easier for the digital marketers and analysts of the world and help them better connect the dots for their customers … that’s a really exciting leap forward that the industry has achieved in the last 10 years.


Clicktale was acquired by Contentsquare in 2019. Since then, tools and features mentioned in this blog may have evolved. Learn more about our Digital Experience Analytics Platform.