SALT LAKE CITY -- Adobe dropped the curtain and revealed some of its work in its digital marketing labs for the 6,000 attendees at the Digital Marketing Summit last night here at the Salt Palace Convention Center.

The demonstrations drew ooh's and aah's from the crowd -- even from comedian and musician Wayne Brady himself, the event's guest host -- but Adobe's not making any promises the technology will hit the streets.

"Sneaks demonstrations are a preview of the ideas and technologies percolating inside Adobe Labs," Adobe officials said in a statement, "and should not be viewed as a representation of product plans or features."

That said, the biggest hits -- if you're measuring that by crowd reaction -- were probably Adobe's work in Digital Asset Management (DAM), in-store customer mapping through mobile app tracking and big data analytics.

In-Store Mobile Tracking

Adobe officials demonstrated the company's bluetooth beacon technology. It could ultimately allow retail marketers to target strategic spots where its customers shop and measure their activity. Through its mobile app, digital marketers could track which type of customers entered a store, where they went, who they are and how long they spent at each spot in a store.

The technology is called Mobile Reality, which helps retailers "find ways to build a deeper connection between their customers and their brand," according to Steve Hammond, senior director of Marketing Cloud product management at Adobe. 

The technology does rely on the shopper to first download an app to their phone, opt-in and fill out information that would be relevant to the retailer's tracking. Without that, there's not much the marketer can do (perhaps the customer leaves their phone in their car).

If the customer fills out the info, and carries his smartphone as expected, the marketers behind the technology can send relevant push messages and offers during the in-store experience.

Asset Management

We all have our stock image assets -- hundreds, even thousands of images. Tagging makes things easier to find. But as one digital marketer that uses the Adobe Creative Cloud told CMSWire last night, it's a lot of work doing the tagging.

Adobe engineers are working on technology that basically does the tagging for you, tracking down images based on metadata built in behind the scenes without the tagging leg work. And it also provides analytics -- to measure how those assets perform in marketing campaigns.

Adobe's Craig Mathis showed the technology, called SmartPic, which provides an advanced algorithm that compares new content assets against an existing library of images, and then generates meta tags automatically.

Learning Opportunities

That data once an image is imported is then integrated into the Adobe Marketing Cloud and provides the analytics.

Craig told the crowd you can find the number of impressions, whether it is currently in use as part of a campaign and how it performed among certain segments. 

“It brings the art of the creative team and the science of marketing analytics together in a way that hasn't been done before," Craig said.

Agile Analytics

But one Adobe preview will be available as early as this month. Ben Gaines, a senior product marketing manager for Adobe Analytics, demonstrated the analytics product.

The FreeForm technology focuses on bringing more speed, ease-of-use and flexibility to the Adobe Marketing Cloud. Gaines showed FreeForm can help marketers generate data queries using a drag-and-drop interface and ultimately gain big data insights.

Data queries could include revenue and orders for three different customer segments, what products they've purchased or what search terms purchasers have used.

“We've essentially written a new query language to work with our platform to get data back faster than ever before," Gaines said. "You can query hundreds of millions of rows and have the data rendered inside the tool in sub-second time."