Adobe Experience Platform: The Real Time Platform for Customer Experience Management

» 9 min read


By Rohit Khattar

What is customer experience management (CXM)?

Customer experience management (CEM) is the practice of designing and reacting to customer interactions to meet or exceed their expectations, leading to higher customer satisfaction, loyalty, and advocacy*.

Why is real-time customer experience management so critical to the business?

In today’s world, customers expect brands to treat them as unique individuals and know their personal preferences and past behavior to create a more personalized & unified experience. Brands may have different touchpoints and departments, but consumers expect a unified & connected digital experience across different channels.

According to leading industry sources, the importance of customer experience management will grow manifold for businesses. In a recent survey by Walker, it was revealed that 86% of consumers are willing to pay more for great customer experience. Gartner predicts that by 2022, profitability will replace customer experience as the CMO’s No. 1 strategic priority. And according to Clicktale, customers who have had an unpleasant experience on a brand website are 88% less likely to return.

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What are the key challenges in delivering real-time customer experience management?

  • With the explosion of new customer touchpoints and channels, enterprises are facing stiff challenges to maintain a single view of the customer. The customer data is scattered in siloes within different systems leading to incomplete & decentralized customer profiles of the same individual. Hence creating a single view of the customer is an expensive and time-consuming process for enterprises.
  • Most enterprises do not have an efficient and specialized infrastructure to manage and integrate ever-growing customer data from multiple sources and systems. These systems are not capable enough to activate customer profiles quickly in real-time and personalize at scale.
  • There is also a lack of normalized or standardized customer data schema, which requires cumbersome data transformation within different connected systems within an enterprise.
  • Current systems lack the capability of a centralized data governance framework. Data collection and data usage practices are constrained by user consent, regulations, and contracts.
  • There is a challenge to predict customer behavior or to derive insights at scale. Hence, brands lose the opportunity to provide intelligent & personalized real-time activation of customer profiles at scale.

What is Adobe Experience Platform?

  • Adobe Experience Platform is the industry’s first open and extensible real-time customer experience platform with continuous intelligence and personalization at scale.
  • The platform can ingest a high volume of customer data from different systems and stitches customer identities from various touchpoints. It transforms the customer profile data into a single source of truth and creates a real-time customer profile, which helps in delivering personalized customer experiences.

adobe experience cloud

What are the key capabilities of the Adobe Experience Platform?

1. Real-time customer data platform (CDP)

  • Adobe Experience Platform provides a centralized customer data platform for managing a single source of truth for customer data, capable of ingesting a high volume of known and unknown customer data.
  • The data is ingested into the Experience Platform’s petabyte-scale data lake and can be imported from Adobe solutions like Adobe Analytics, Adobe Target, Adobe Audience Manager, third-party connectors (Microsoft Dynamics, Salesforce, S3, etc.), or through the available APIs.

adobe experience

2. Identity stitching

  • The platform stitches together customer identities received from different touchpoints, and generates real-time customer profile fragments.
  • The platform handles not only different customer data attributes like their age, first name, or last name but also their past behavior, which can be leveraged to deliver meaningful insights in real-time.
  • The platforms helps brands create high-value segments based on the unified customer profile data.


3. Data governance and privacy

  • The platform provides a robust and powerful data governance framework to manage compliance with the regulations and restrictions of the data usage.
  • The framework lets marketers determine how data should be used in the organization, which makes decisions on how to use it, and who manages it. Marketers can apply specific labels to data based on governance and compliance needs, including contractual, identity, sensitive, and GDPR data labels.
  • The identity stitching can be directly impacted by the data governance framework based on the consent given by the customer.


4. Experience data model – a single standardized data schema

  • Adobe has standardized the customer experience data by introducing a common Experience Data Model (XDM), an open data initiative in collaboration with Microsoft and SAP.
  • All the data that gets imported from different sources into Experience Platform gets curated and organized into this normalized model called XDM, enabling brands to be able to surface new insights quickly and deliver experiences in a faster, more integrated way.

5. Data science workspace

  • The Experience platform data science workspace provides the capability to apply machine learning and AI to normalize cross channel data to enable intelligent customer journies with real-time decisions and meaningful actions at scale.
  • Data science workspace streamlines and accelerates data into insights enabling brands to make use of Adobe Sensei.
  • The platform comes with a fully managed, secure, and scalable infrastructure which helps enterprises leverage out of the box Adobe Sensei models or create their own models and seamlessly train them without the need for any additional infrastructure.

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6. Query service

  • Adobe Experience platform Query Service enables data scientists, data engineers, and marketers to use SQL to find insights from their omnichannel data in Experience Platform.
  • The Query Service uses a powerful, serverless, petabyte-scale query engine to query complex data efficiently.
  • Customers can use different data management tools such as Dbvisualizer, Aqua Data Studio, and others to work with their data in the Adobe Experience Platform.
  • It provides the ability to connect to business intelligence tools like Power BI, Tableau, Looker, and other such tools.

7. Real-time activation APIs

  • Adobe Experience platform provides secured and efficient APIs to easily integrate with any other Adobe Cloud products or any non-Adobe system.
  • The real-time profiles can be analyzed and activated in milliseconds enabling delivery of experiences in real-time at scale to any set of devices or channels.
  • For example, a consumer may visit a website and add an item to his or her cart, but then leave the website without checking out. Brands can use that data in real-time to send an automatic personal email with an exclusive offer.

8. Built on open standards

  • The platform is built on open and extensible cloud infrastructure (AWS, Azure) and provides APIs which allow customers to quickly develop innovative experience applications at scale.
  • The platform services layer is implemented using a microservices architecture having multiple services.

9. Adds value to Adobe cloud products

  • The Experience Platform is enhancing Experience Cloud products, and one such example is Adobe Campaign’s recent functionality “triggered journeys,” which leverages Experience Platform’s real-time customer profile that automatically delivers real-time and personalized messages based on customer interaction with the brand.
  • Enterprises can use APIs and tight integration with the rest of Adobe cloud products to deliver more contextual and personalized real-time digital experience.
  • With Adobe Experience Platform, enterprises no longer need to have a point to point integration within Adobe cloud products and can instead leverage a more robust and centralized integration which is centered around the Experience Platform.

Source: *Gartner

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Rohit Khattar

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