Adobe puts artificial intelligence tools into its marketing software

FILE PHOTO: An Adobe Systems Inc software box is seen in Los Angeles, California, U.S., March 13, 2017. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson

(Reuters) – Adobe Inc ADBE.O said on Monday that it has put a new set of artificial intelligence tools into its digital marketing software with the aim of helping companies sharpen their marketing campaigns.

Once known for applications like Photoshop, Adobe has become one of the biggest providers of software for running such campaigns, which businesses use to decide which of thousands of images and pieces of written to content to show to potential customers. Growth in its marketing software division has helped send shares up nearly 50% this year.

The artificial intelligence features released on Monday aid that effort by, for example, scanning and labeling thousand of product images by color and shape, or using natural-language processing technology to read an article to determine its subject.

That makes it easier for marketing campaigns to make a recommendation, whether that means showing a person browsing an e-commerce site a pair of shoes similar to ones they have previously viewed or a news website suggesting a story on a similar subject to the one just read.

Such artificial intelligence technology has existed for several years, but using it generally required corporate marketing departments to export data from their systems and work with another division of the business to use, slowing the work down, Ali Bohra, director of strategy and product marketing for intelligence services at Adobe, said in an interview. Adobe has placed the technologies directly inside the marketing systems, reducing the need to export data.

“When you’re thinking about the need to be agile and work in real time, this is not a process that works very well,” Bohra said.

Reporting by Stephen Nellis in San Francisco; Editing by Marguerita Choy

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