100 Percent Programmatic Advertising Approach Pays Off for Adobe

by Jennifer Bartell

posted on 11-09-2018

Programmatic advertising is steadily shaking off a reputation riddled with quality, performance, ad fraud, and brand safety concerns as adoption widens. Analysts say that over half of digital display ad transactions will be through programmatic by 2020. Adobe is giving programmatic advertising a makeover, turning the ugly duckling of marketing into a beautiful swan.

Adobe Advertising Cloud combines high-quality customer data with clear visibility into campaign performance, allowing marketers to target high-value audiences and deliver results. But rather than just telling companies what they can accomplish using Advertising Cloud, Adobe decided to put its money where its mouth is and run its own, 100% programmatic global advertising campaign.

The Adobe Experience Business campaign targets C-level executives with stories from customers about what it means to deliver great customer experiences. The goal of the campaign is to drive interest in the company’s enterprise solutions. Where programmatic advertising would have previously accounted for approximately 20 percent of the budget, Adobe went all-in on programmatic for its Experience Business campaign.

“Data directs our creativity and the way we engage with customers across products, screens, and channels,” says Steve Weeks, Director of Media Strategy and Planning at Adobe. “Our creativity extends beyond aesthetics with Adobe Advertising Cloud, and using data to activate audience segments, we can get the attention of the audiences that drive our business.”

Using Advertising Cloud meant that instead of selecting outlets target customers might frequent, Adobe marketers relied on first-party audience data to target customers where and when optimal opportunities exist. Adobe also worked with agency partner WaveMaker to provide added oversight to its campaign, develop new strategies, and take advantage of new social channels. The approach is paying off. In the first six months of the campaign, awareness and engaged customer visit rates increased by 1.5X over the previous two quarters, and reach increased by 30 percent through successful targeting of key audiences.

As important as the quality of the engagements, programmatic advertising is also helping Adobe to maintain control over its budget. Balancing budget with impressions, Adobe cut cost per thousand impressions (CPM) by more than half, from $25 to $12. Additionally, Adobe marketers surpassed expectations for delivering programmatic campaigns for visibility, customer experience, and over 70 unique KPIs including lift in awareness and reach — connecting specifically with key accounts.

Adobe customers are seeing the real beauty of programmatic campaigns as well. The company has seen an overall improvement in perception across customer segments by up to 6 percent on customer surveys.

“The best feedback we got from our Experience Business campaign was from our customers, letting us know that they found us on some unlikely websites,” says Weeks. “They typically followed with the question, ‘What made you think to connect with me there?’ Our response was simple — ‘Because you were there.’ Adobe Advertising Cloud enabled us to make that vision a reality.”

Read the full story here.

Watch Steve Weeks tell the story in the following video from our New York City Symposium last June.

Topics: Digital Transformation, Advertising

Products: Advertising Cloud, Analytics, Audience Manager