Brandon Hartness — the marketing cloud evangelist for Adobe Systems — spoke to Target Marketing about cloud platforms and how Adobe Marketing Cloud is designed to make things easy for marketers and IT.
What are marketers looking for in a cloud platform?
There’s really a number of things they’re looking for.
To a large degree, they’re looking to remove the burden from IT. IT doesn’t want to or need to maintain the infrastructure of delivery-based marketing platforms. … It’s just about having a platform that they can easily engage with. … [That] the marketer can easily make changes to.
They also want to make sure that the technology they choose is really an integrated platform. It’s integrated across all of the channels where they’re marketing their communication, but it’s also integrated into their existing systems. … The real-time aspect is what they’re looking to remove from the IT team and place in marketers’ hands — because they need to be real-time, and they need to act fast delivering marketing messaging.
When it comes to actually using the platform, what capabilities are most important to marketing success?
We need to make sure that the marketing technology is easy to deploy, first off, to get it into the marketing channels where they’re marketing. Whether that’s their typical desktop websites, or maybe it’s a mobile application or multiple mobile applications. ...
As we’re seeing this content and this data being distributed across all of these different channels, we also need to make sure it’s easy to use, because we’re not just talking about a single persona that’s managing a single channel anymore. We have a marketing organization working together, and we need to make sure that technology they’re using is somewhat seamless, to where the marketer can bounce between perhaps analytics and content and targeting and optimization and so on, and it’s a familiar environment and easy-to-use environment.
Then, lastly, integration into the existing systems. They’re always going to have their enterprise data that’s behind their firewalls. They’re always going to have multiple vendors, and really we just need to make sure that the technology and the platform that they’re using is compatible with both enterprise and third-party vendors. … They’re going to onboard a tool like Adobe Marketing Cloud and they’re going to deploy a number of our solutions, but they still may have ExactTarget for email, and they’re going to be using Salesforce for CRM. Then, they’re going to have SAS for their enterprise data that’s behind their firewall. The data platform and the marketing platform that they’re using just needs to have the connectors to be able to ingest data, as well as push data out to additional parties.