Marketers fear not, a robot will not steal your job. Nor will it crush creativity. Instead, marketers have value that machines can never replace. That was the message from two Adobe executives at last year’s Symposium.

With the 2017 Adobe Symposium just around the corner, and with programmatic and machine learning more in the news than ever, it is worth revisiting their messages.

While there have been great leaps in automation and programmatic marketing, APAC Adobe’s marketing cloud senior product manager Cameron Cowan says marketers will always have a place in conveying the narrative.

Automation can potentially free up 10 to 15 per cent of marketing executive’s time, according to figures in the presentation. This then gives marketers the time to focus on more important operations, Cowan said.

“Let the machine do what it’s good at, crunching really big numbers, and then allowing you to take the controls to make the right marketing decisions for your business,” he said.

The main thing that machines can’t do and where good marketers shine is ‘data story telling’, according to Cowan. Interpreting and disseminating data is the area where marketers will find their irreplaceable value, he said.

“We have more data than we’ve ever experienced before in the history of the world… but it can’t just be about data,” Cowan stressed.

“Where you have the most value as a marketer is in the narrative.”

Machines can handle the data and even visualise that data, but for Cowan it is marketers who ultimately promote the brand.

“This is how we balance man and machine. We need machines to collect massive data for us. We need them to help us create beautiful and streamlined, and hopefully really quick data visualisations. But we as marketers need to build the narrative around what we want our business and what we want ourselves to be and become,” he said.

Meanwhile in her presentation Monica Lay senior Product Marketing Manager, Adobe said that Programmatic advertising isn’t devoid of creativity despite its ‘robotic’ perception.

VIDEO — The Body of Data and the Soul of Creativity in Programmatic Advertising 

“Creative ideas are still a very critical element in driving successful campaigns,” Lay told the audience at the Adobe Symposium.

While leveraging data and technology are now critical, the need for creative customer experience is still important.

“Creating an experience that inspires audiences, whether you’re trying to drive awareness, right through to shifting customer perceptions, to engaging audience to take a call to action,” Lay said.

According to Lay, these programmatic ideas are where the main challenge comes and where dynamic creative optimisation can help. Explaining that the programmatic technology can potentially provide relevant creative experiences while still resolving inconsistent customer experiences. Lay also said it potentially rectifies the problem of A/B testing at scale and improves time to market.

“What’s different about dynamic creative is essentially the fact that it’s actually a creative layout,” Lay said.

She said elements of the layout are dynamically pulled in from a content feed, in real time, to create a personalised and more effective customer impression and experience, while also reducing costs.

The technology targets users intelligently and can incorporate second and third party data, Lay said. Allowing technology to do the heavy lifting, freeing up more of an organisations resources.

According to Lay, dynamic creative optimisation; “delivers incremental personalisation, relevance and ultimately results.”

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