Brands which understand their customers’ growing affinity for experiences over products will be the winners in a third wave of digital transformation, delegates at the Adobe Summit in Las Vegas were told.
Adobe EVP and GM Brad Rencher said while early adopters benefited from digital transformation of back and front office functions and increased efficiency, the third wave is not about brands or what they sell but the customer experience.
He said: “It’s about doing our jobs so well customers don’t even know we exist. As marketers, we need to understand we’re no longer in the business of selling products, we’re in the business of selling experiences.”
Announcing a range of enhancements to Adobe’s Marketing Cloud, Rencher said to become experience businesses, brands must ensure their content is continuous, consistent and compelling.
They need to know and respect their customers, speak to them in one voice and in context, make the technology transparent and “delight them at every turn”.
He added a customer’s expectations of a brand will double every 18 months so it’s vital they continue to evolve and disrupt themselves.
Rancher warned while there are big opportunities for brands who do so, social platforms mean there will be “dire consequences” for those that don’t.
“They will be called out loudly and publicly by their customers,” he added.
Adobe president and CEO Shantanu Narayan warned digital experiences need to work flawlessly and while getting content to the right person at the right time takes data, robots will never do great marketing.
He added: “Human intuition can never be replaced. But if we can harness the power of computing – man plus machine – to work faster and smarter, we can make big things happen.”
Martin Lane is a guest of Adobe at the Summit event in Las Vegas.