flash in a pan

Why Digital Marketers Don't Fear the End of Flash

4 minute read
Erika Morphy avatar

To hear the Wall Street Journal tell it, Adobe's Flash might as well hang it up right now. The paper recently concluded that the software application is a "top contender for the technology dead pool." 

Why? Because the tech industry is tired of what they perceive to be the many security fails of Flash. Even without the security risk they believe it poses, Flash is, in their eyes, a holdover from the days when desktops ruled the Internet.

The trouble began earlier this month when Adobe released an update plugging yet another security hole. Facebook Chief Security Officer Alex Stamos took his irritation public, tweeting that

For their part, Google and Mozilla temporarily disabled Flash.

Without a doubt Flash is renown for its security issues. In the May 2015 quarterly threat report by McAfee Labs, the company devoted an entire section to Flash.

But this, as even McAfee pointed out is an issue for web designers and developers.

Digital marketers presumably are safe, as they tend to use the array of cloud-based suites and tools that Adobe has been rolling out over the years.  They also tend to use newer web technologies  — which Adobe has been embracing with abandon.

Adobe is More Than Flash

That is why Adobe as a company is "safe" as well from the demise — imminent or otherwise — of Flash.

When asked about Flash, digital marketing and the Wall Street Journal article, an Adobe spokesperson told CMSWire that clearly the industry trend is for the deployment of rich motion graphics directly via the browser using HTML5, CSS3, JavaScript and other newer web technologies. Adobe, she said, is responding in kind by offering HTML5 development tools. Meanwhile, Adobe continues to support Flash for customers that still use it.

Adobe's earnings and financial presentation also point to the company's eagerness to emphasize its cloud-based and digital marketing offerings.

While the company does not break out revenues for all of its product lines, its digital marketing revenues can often be found front and center.

For example, last month Adobe posted a record quarterly revenue of $1.16 billion for the second quarter. Its Digital Media Annualized Recurring Revenue reached $2.35 billion and Adobe Marketing Cloud posted revenue of $327 million.

"Strong execution against our Creative Cloud, Document Cloud and Marketing Cloud businesses drove record revenue," said Shantanu Narayen, Adobe president and chief executive officer.  "We are accelerating the pace of innovation in our Cloud offerings and are thrilled to be launching our best Creative Cloud release to date, which includes Adobe Stock -- our new stock content service."

Learning Opportunities

This is true and we will be circling back to what Adobe is doing for marketers.

Flash Was DOA For Mobile

First, though, it is also important to note this somewhat obvious fact: Flash was never an issue for digital marketers because the application never made any traction in the mobile sphere.

Flash never had a chance when Apple banned it from its ecosystem several years ago. As for Android, it has been six full operating system versions since these devices supported Flash, according to the Sizmek Mobile Index report for 2015. 

Flash inventory on the mobile device is basically extinct.

A More Comprehensive Focus

Fortunately for digital marketers and Adobe, the company has indeed made significant advancements in other areas. Many other areas. To name a few in no particular order:

Next month will mark the two-year anniversary of Adobe’s acquisition of email marketer Neolane.

Now called Adobe Campaign, this functionality is part of Adobe Marketing Cloud, and offers customers the ability to personalize and deliver campaigns across online and offline channels including.

Last month Adobe and Microsoft announced the integration of Adobe’s Marketing Cloud with Microsoft’s Dynamics CRM. The integration is aimed at marketers who use both platforms – a sizeable group of companies.

Adobe also recently released the new Document Cloud, which compiles a number of apps with the goal of providing – or getting users closer to – the paperless office experience.

Creative Commons Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic License  Title image by liber.

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