Day Two at the Adobe Summit started out even more exciting than the previous day. All the fear of the unknown from Day 1 vanished, and people got to know each other and enjoy the experience of being among fellow analysts in the heart of Vegas.
On Wednesday, the main conference event focused more on success stories rather than product announcements and updates.
Key people from diverse industries, such as Satya Nadella, Reese Witherspoon and Drew Breese, shared their amazing experience in working with data to exceed in their areas.
They all agreed that data is the main driver behind the modern decision-making process. Data shapes the world, it helps you make the best decisions, be the best version of yourself, and it allows you to create the perfect setup to empower others and to encourage people to empower themselves.
Ann Lewnes, CMO Adobe, shared her experience in transitioning to digital and how it helped the company thrive and become a leader and a hub in the modern world. Adobe became one of the biggest hubs for corporations and creative professionals alike, with more than 9.2 billion website visits every year. She also talked about what comes next: 5G, Machine learning, and AI being just a few of the trends she anticipated.
In a dialogue with Adobe’s CEO Santanu Narayen, Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft, shared his experience in working with data to find the “next big thing” to see how you can reinvent your mission to stay relevant as a company and to actually make a difference in the world. He believes that “empathy is the core of every innovation,” and he talked about the ways the world is changing and how we can evolve along and have a positive impact.
Next, Reese Witherspoon talked about her experience with digital transformation, and how social media and video streaming democratized the movie industry. You can interact with your fans directly via social platforms, and get instant feedback and real-time data. This was never possible before. The world is changing rapidly, the consumers’ behavior is totally different than it was 10, 20 years ago, and she concluded that in order to survive, you need to adapt.
Drew Brees, Quarterback for the New Orleans Saints, talked on stage with Pam Oliver, NFL Reporter at Fox Sports. He spoke about how data helps athletes understand how to get better, how to improve their game-play and their lifestyle. He shared his amazing journey, from his shoulder injury to recovery, and how being given a second chance can sometimes completely transform your life.
Check our full coverage of the event below and visit us at Booth 966:
Ann Lewnes, EVP & CMO, Adobe
When we moved to digital, we said that we’ll move 75% of our marketing budget to digital, and people said we’re crazy.
We use all our products every day. While technology is a powerful enabler, it’s only the first step. You need the right people to make a successful transformation. We reskilled people where we could and brought new skills where we needed. Our media team learned to love new ad formats and programmatic, and our designers became content machines to keep pace with content demands. And, of course, we brought a lot of digital natives. We looked for people with a digital mind, who are not afraid to step over the boundaries.
If we don’t hit our targets every single week, the rest of the customer journey can stop. So we test everything, from the color of a buy button to global navigation and business models.
All the customers we have visit adobe.com and made it into one of the largest corporate websites in the world, with 9.2 billion visitors every single year.
We engage with all types of channels, social, video, images, etc. Marketing has never been more highly valued, and with respect and credibility comes more requests for what we do. More events, more tests to optimize every experience. As marketers, we finally proved our worth, and now we feel the pressure to go bigger and better.
As we all know, the transformation is never over. There are big trends at the horizon that are changing the game again. Mobile, 5G, Ml, AI, you can finally target individual households, an explosion of video. U.S. adults spend nearly 6 hours per day watching videos.
Satya Nadella, CEO, Microsoft
The adaptive controller was just a group of people from the XBox team who thought, “What can you do to help everyone play?” That lead to the creation of this product. It wasn’t even a sanctioned project, it came from a hackathon. The thing that was most inspiring was in the packaging: they thought about how they can make even the packaging accessible.
Empathy is the core of every innovation. What is the real source of inspiration, the necessary conditions to get your strategy and products? One is a sense of purpose and the other is culture. When I joined Microsoft, the mission was a PC in every home. Ever since, we talked about what’s the next big mission. For us, it has a deep meaning. The mission is just not big empty words.
Culture is so important because if you keep reinventing yourself, you need the learning culture. I realized that if you can move from being a “know-it-all” to “learn-it-all” and maintain that posture, that can help you the most.
You need to adjust to the harsh realities of the business models. You need to know that you need to make a leap between product and technology and business model, especially with a customer-centric approach.
The most important thing about embedding computing into the world is the digital transformation it infuses. It is transformed with the availability of computing power.
There are three layers of the intelligent cloud. The first is that computing itself is more distributed. The second is that when you have a lot of computing power, you do AI. You reason over large amounts of data to create the next-gen experiences. The question is how do you take these fundamental building blocks of AI and use it?
The last layer is about the experience. It’s no longer about a natural interfacing one device. Now it’s about how to have a creative session that is spanning along all devices. Now let’s take that and say how can the shopping experience offline look like, and then blend the online and offline experiences.
Every company and every industry takes world-class breakthroughs into products and services that change the experiences.
I’m excited to see we bring more of the instinctual UI to unlock creativity. I want to empower the people who work in our enterprise with the best tools so they can be the best.
If you look at the creative cloud, the marketing cloud or experience cloud, you communicate and eventually the final product is a lot better. It’s not about growing dependent on Adobe or Microsoft, it’s about us helping customers to build their digital independence.
The greatest asset that everyone has is the data that you have, which is yours. Except it’s locked out sometimes in silos. The partnership we have with SAP helps us enrich this data, and helps across everything you do with your enterprise. Everything can be driven by data.
Whenever I think that it’s amazing how much computing we have, I realize it’s nowhere near enough. With the new 5G technology we’re taking the power of cloud and low latency and we’ll be able to stream directly from XBox all around the world.
Now, machine learning is in the core language models, the ability to do that at scale. If we are talking, we talk with both gestures and speech. That is the next frontier where we need to take all the AI techniques.
What if we make the entire experience instinctual? What if we break through the actual user experience and make it intuitive across all devices? This is another trend I’m excited about. One of the hardest things to do is to try to predict with high precision what consumers will like and what will be the consumers’ behavior in the future. The key is to understand that their expectation about what they want and what you should produce is changing, and you should update your strategy.
Instead of saying you got to be right all the time, you need to give credit to people who come with a hypothesis and prove themselves wrong.
Reese Witherspoon, Actress, Producer, & Entrepreneur
We’re at an interesting moment in time with women supporting each other. With the emergence of social media and the connection people have with it and having their own platforms of expressing themselves and their ideas, we find that we’re connecting in ways we never expected. I’ve found great inspiration through Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and all these platforms. I’ve found the ability to create with people. We’re standing together and supporting each other in ways we never had before.
I think it’s a time where you can engage with people with transparency, and let them in your life in a way that’s different than ever before. Before, the only measurement was box office and critics, but it wasn’t really empirical data, and it wasn’t interactive. It was incredible for me to hear directly from people and interact with them, good or bad, even if they sometimes hurt my feelings.
I’m totally addicted to my phone. Who else is addicted to their phone? I’m an entrepreneur, I own a company that designs women’s clothes. I love data. I love how digital can help you promote your products.
My husband gave me the support and boost I needed to start my company. I thought, why should I go to studios who don’t do movies for women?
I thought that I don’t want their money. I self-funded for 5 years, but now, as the business is grown, and I have a digital media aspect to it and we’ve been funded by AT&T, we’re able to create outside the scope of traditional TV. This has given us the freedom of putting women at the center.
I think data has really changed our industry. The emergence of streaming in our industry created a more even playing field. Audiences don’t want the same 20 people. They want diverse storytelling, more diverse people. We want to see the world we live in, and now, with streaming, we’re able to see that.
We’re getting a more expansive expression of humanity through the emergence of these other platforms. It’s terrifying to people who are deeply invested in some aspects of our businesses, but as human behavior changes, we also need to adapt.
My teenage children don’t watch TV, they don’t go to the movies. They’re on Instagram, on Snapchat, etc.
People want to see how people’s lives really are. Big Little Lies shocked others, and we couldn’t believe it. We thought we were making a film, but we didn’t realized the impact it was gonna have.
Customers are looking for customers who are deeply invested in making the world a better place.
For me, the education of young women is important. It would be great if our kids would learn about interest rates and credit card debt, and how to pay the mortgage. Skills that you actually need in life.
Drew Brees, Quarterback, New Orleans Saints
There was a lot of pressure after the NFL championship game. I think the league and the competition committee are constantly trying to make the game better, the fans’ experience better. It’s never perfect, and it’s never an exact science. It sounds like it’s something experimental. I’m interested to see what difference it makes in certain games. I think at the end of the day, that would be something that carries forward or just one year and done.
I want to know that if there’s a game-changing call in a game, we’re gonna be able to make it right. Life is crazier during the off season than it is during the season. During the season is structured. You know when to wake up, what to eat, what to do. It’s a routine and a consistent schedule. During off season is more chaotic. I try to segment what I do in February vs. what I do in March or April.
I know the way that we use tech as a football team now. When I first started, we would watch films on VHS tapes, you’d have to find matches, search for them, rewind. Now it’s basically all there on your computer. I can access any game, practice, any play that we’ve run throughout my entire career.
It’s amazing what you can do with the data you can collect. You can categorize and see how you can leverage that data. The amount of information and the way we can process is now is such an advantage.
13 years ago I was coming off from a major shoulder injury. I had some doctors saying I only had a 25% of ever playing football again. There’s a lot of pressure on coaches in this industry to win.
There’s always something to prove, there’s always another challenge. You need to continue to adapt and evolve. Everyone is studying you. You need to find ways to stay ahead of the curve. Each and every off season, you need to think what will be your next bread and butter.
There’s a saying that we have about defensive players: they just can’t help themselves. They are programmed to be hyper-aggressive. That’s who they are, that’s their mentality.
We’re seeing all these young gunslingers coming to the league, and we try to find ways to stay ahead. There’s no replacement for wisdom and experience.
I find that I spend more time on recovery. If what I do translates to making me a better quarterback, I do it, otherwise, I don’t have time for that. I can’t waste a day, I can’t waste a second.
I’m so grateful for the opportunity that I’ve been given. I try to take advantage of every opportunity I can get to give back. Every child that comes to me and says they’re a fan, I understand that even if I have 10 seconds, I try to change their mindset and inspire something in them.
I try to inspire everyone, especially my kids. Your kids hear very little of what you say, but they see everything that you do. Try not to give them long lectures. The way I act, the way I conduct myself in public, and the way I interact with people will influence them more than any lecture.