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Apps and location have become the core pieces of the mobile experience, and today Adobe is updating its Marketing Cloud with tools for both.

There’s now in-app messaging, so marketers can deliver communication as part of the app. This capability is available in mobile marketing platforms like Kahuna but is now just coming to marketing clouds. Messages can be set for delivery when there are specified user behaviors, such as opening an app.

They can even be delivered when the user has entered a given location that uses iBeacons, devices that transmit store- or even aisle-specific, on-the-spot coupons and sales to customers.

With this new Intelligent Location Marketing, Adobe envisions in-app messages being delivered inside, say, a Target app while you’re in the Target store, followed by emails if the marketer so desires.

This knowledge of a mobile user is defining the new phase of mobile marketing, where a remote marketer can tell if a user has entered a store or even if she is in one part of the store.

A screen from Adobe Marketing Cloud's new Intelligent Location Marketing

Above: A screen from Adobe Marketing Cloud’s new Intelligent Location Marketing

Image Credit: Adobe Marketing Cloud

“We could do retargeting before,” Adobe mobile strategic marketing manager Ray Pun told VentureBeat, referring to the ability to send reminder messages to a given user. “But now we’re bringing in proximity data” from iBeacons or GPS.

A new Dashboard allows a single view of app content, refresh cycle, app launches, and so on, and enables testing of apps during development. It offers “transparency [to developers] to where an app is in its lifecycle,” Pun told us.

Adobe has also implemented what it calls “the industry’s first automated Mobile Bid Adjustments,” where search-based ads can be placed on mobile devices using such parameters as device, time-of-day, or location. It also accounts for different conversion rates on mobile devices, which is more difficult to do in Google’s tools for search ads.

A new Digital Content Editor in Adobe Campaign enables the creation of emails that can be previewed for a device type, and there’s now an automated tie-in between iBeacon promotional offers and follow-up emails. “Did you see the coupon we sent you the last time you were in Lowe’s?” might read one such automatically generated missive.

And the company has released a Social App, initially as an iOS beta, so that marketers can track social content while they’re out and about.

Adobe hopes to stay ahead of the game in cloud-based marketing automation, a suite of tools that allows marketers to identify, segment, target, and message digital consumers. At the moment, the company’s Marketing Cloud is flying high, so to speak, following Forrester Research’s recent Marketing Cloud Wave report that identified Adobe as having the highest overall scores of all the marketing clouds.

Pun described Adobe’s position as “way ahead of its competitors,” as substantiated by the Forrester report. In the space of app messaging with analytics, he singled out point-solution competitor Localytics. But the other marketing clouds, such as Salesforce’s, are similarly placing a heavy emphasis on mobile, and beacon-based marketing is also becoming par for the course.

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