A few weeks ago I read a great blog post entitled The Era of Server-side Everything from my colleague Jan Exner. I wanted to write a comment, but as I started to think about what to write, I realised it was going to be too long. Instead, I decided I would write my own post on this topic. Then, as I started to think what I would include, additional blog posts came to my mind. So, this is the first of a series of posts on server-side digital marketing.
In my previous post, I introduced Adobe Sensei. Two of the examples I gave, of tools using this feature, were anomaly detection and contribution analysis. Last week one of my customers asked me about these features so I thought I would explain them in more detail in this blog.
I am sure you have been hearing a lot about Adobe Sensei lately. This technology was announced in November 2016, but only in the last few months it has become more mainstream. In summary, Adobe Sensei is Adobe’s approach to artificial intelligence. In this post, I would like to provide a brief introduction to this new Adobe offering. I am not an expert in these technologies, but if you have heard of these technologies and are wondering about them, this post will shed some light.
If you are in the digital marketing world, you should have heard about the Cambridge Analytica latests scandals. The first time I heard about it was how they harvested 50M profiles from Facebook, a few days ago. Today I read some allegations on their influence on Trump’s victory. This is not a blog about politics, so I am going to skip this part. Instead, I want to focus on the digital marketing side. Before progressing, I recommend you read the last link I have shared, which is what has inspired this post.
I am sure we have all been concerned about security in the last decade or more. However, since 2013, after the revelations of Edward Snowden, we have begun to be really worried about it. It comes to no surprise that Adobe tools need to be secure too. In the end, you are pouring your marketing data there. I am not a security expert, so always get independent advice. However, in this post I will give an introduction to some security considerations concerning the Adobe stack.
A while ago I wrote about the the Adobe Analytics data feed. Adobe Audience Manager has the same concept: you can get a file with the raw data. This feed is call Customer Data Feed or CDF.
When I attended my AAM training a few years ago, I remember I barely understood what I was explained. To me, it was all new. The technicalities were not that difficult, but when the trainers explained the business side, I stopped following the course; it was all gibberish to me. It took me a couple of years to get a reasonable understanding of the display advertising industry. Since then, colleagues and customers have asked me to explain them how this industry works, so I thought I would write a “display advertising introduction for dummies” post. I will omit a lot of parts and will simplify it. If you are well versed in this area, I suggest you skip this article, as it will not offer anything new to you. In fact, you may even know more than me!
The main functionality of the Adobe Admin Console is user management. If you have been using Adobe products for a while, you will remember when you had to create users in each tool. This is all changing and Adobe is moving to a centralised approach, where all user management is done in one single interface. Let’s see how.
The Adobe Admin Console is probably one of the least known sections of the Adobe Experience Cloud. In fact, the admin console is now its own product in the Adobe ecosystem, as it can potentially be used by more clouds. As most of you know, all products in the Experience Cloud come from acquisitions, which means that each product had its own administration section. However, Adobe is now investing in a single administration console for all of them and this is the result. Here you have an introduction to the Adobe Admin Console.
If you keep information about your customers, you need a database to store it. The first solution that probably comes to your mind is a CRM, but this is not the only option. As you know, Adobe does not offer a solution to store customer data, but there are many integration points between Adobe solutions and this database. Let’s see how to use your customer data in the Adobe ecosystem and some additional details to take into account.
Server-side integrations have many benefits, which I am not going to enumerate. If you can choose between server-side and client-side integrations, I would generally recommend server-side. However, there is always one drawback: debugging. You cannot see what happens between the servers. This is the case of the Adobe Target and Adobe Audience Manager integration. I have personally had to debug it a few times and this is how you can do it.
In large projects, one of the typical questions I get asked is: should we use one Adobe Marketing Cloud (AMC) or multiple? Unfortunately, there is no black or white answer here, but many shades of grey. However, in the end, you have to choose one option and this decisions is final. Let me share with you some tips to choose wisely.
In my previous post, I explained how to use Adobe Analytics in mobile apps, as there are many similarities between web and apps. However, there are very clear differences, like the fact that an app is installed in a mobile device and a web is not. This gives the SDK the opportunity to capture additional metrics and dimensions in what we call lifecycle metrics. You might also see them named as mobile metrics and dimensions.
After adding the app to Adobe Mobile Services and including the SDK in the mobile app project, the fun starts. Now you can start using the full power of the Adobe Experience Cloud in your app. Let’s start by capturing the user’s behaviour, so you can analyse it in Adobe Analytics. This is very similar to what a web analyst would do with the web.
So you have started developing an app and you want to use your existing Adobe license. You have already added it to Adobe Mobile Services. Now, it is time to add the Adobe Mobile SDK to your application and configure it.
In this fast-changing world we are living in, we tend to concentrate too much on the details and forget about the big picture. As, probably, many of you, I started by just thinking on how to solve the particular questions my customers had. One day, though, I had one of those enlightenment moments and I started to think in use cases instead. Let me explain you my journey until I realised how important the use cases are.
After the introduction from my last post, this on will focus on how to add an app to mobile services. I know there are a lot of details to be configured when adding an app, so I will try to clarify the settings and guide you how to add your own app.
In most of my posts, I refer mainly to the Adobe Experience Cloud applied to the web. I have written a few posts on mobile apps, but I have not yet written an introduction to Adobe Mobile Services. In my experience, it has surprised me the lack of knowledge there is about what you can do with an app. Today I will explain how to use the Adobe Experience Cloud with mobile apps.
Unless you have been living in a cave, you should already have a data layer in your websites. OK, maybe that is too harsh; however, at least, you should have a plan to put one in place. Once you have a good data layer, the next step I recommend is that you deploy a message bus.