Adobe Symposium 2018: Where Experience Makers Are Born

by Suzanne Steele

posted on 08-16-2018

Now, more than ever, businesses need to combine creativity alongside data to be successful. Today’s leading brands understand that the real difference between a good experience and an amazing one is the creativity and intelligence behind them.

For the first time, Adobe Symposium has brought together creative professionals, marketers, data scientists and other Experience Makers to explore the art and science behind powerful customer experiences. Over two days, Adobe Symposium showcased the latest research on The Business Impact of Investing in Customer Experience and the best examples of brands that reflect this success.

In front of 3,500 rockstar marketers and creative professionals, Adobe’s CEO Shantanu Narayen opened the event by sharing his vision for the Adobe business and the world of experience businesses that this audience represents.

Defining some of the industry trends we face in the months and years ahead, he welcomed a Chief Digital Officer fighting to keep one of the most globally recognised brands on top of the competition; David Godsman from The Coca-Cola Company. Touching on the importance of keeping people at the beating heart of your brand, David dissected Coke’s digital strategy and how they engage online audiences with creativity and data to show the intangible aspects of a physical product.

Mark Teperson is a CDO that has disrupted the Australian retail sector by actively placing the customer at the core of their strategy. Discovering 18 months ago that ANZ footwear conglomerate Accent Group weren’t delivering on their physical promise due to pitfalls in inventory management, Mark shared their story of overhauling their omnichannel strategy to now realise several new retail innovations that have increased total digital sales by 170%.

As one of the internet’s most popular writers, Tim Urban captivated the audience with his breakdown of Artificial Intelligence. The TED speaker and creator of information analysis blog ‘Wait But Why‘ explained why AI is not a mere buzzword term but the most significant topic for the implications it raises for our future.

Another TED speaker and celebrated luminary to take the stage was Cindy Gallop, fondly known as the Marketing Maven. Recognised as one of the top global 100 influential women in advertising, Cindy addressed the theme of leadership and the power of creativity to build a successful brand in the Experience era.

Championing creatives and marketers to design experiences that connect with people was a powerful theme at this year’s Symposium. For Adobe, this has culminated in the announcement of a strategic partnership with the Centre for Inclusive Design and Microsoft to conduct a study to assess the impact of incorporating inclusive design thinking into Australian organisations. The study will underscore the importance of incorporating user diversity into the design process to make products and experiences accessible and usable to as many people as possible.

More than ever, consumers care about what brands stand for — so much so that it even challenges the traditional “bottom line” view of a company’s overall success. OzHarvest and Frost*Collective took the stage to share their mission on the responsibility they feel as business leaders to make the world a better place, and the positive effect that purpose-driven strategies can have on the bottom line.

Guests were kept entertained between speakers in the Experience Zone, an immersive activations area featuring the latest insights into business innovations from our partners Accenture Interactive, Accordant, Dentsu Aegis Network, Merkle, Publicis.Sapient and more.

New announcements kept coming throughout the event, with Adobe officially declaring its partnership with RMIT University to support the introduction of new education courses covering digital marketing best practices, data-driven marketing and the game-changing impact of AI.

Adobe Symposium has provided the space for creatives and marketers to come together, share information and create one vision in 2018 — that we are all Experience Makers, and the technology at our fingertips has made it the most exciting time to be one.

Topics: News, Creativity, Digital Transformation, Future of Work