Adobe Acquires Auditude: Integrated Video WCM/DAM Opportunity Or Another Potential Failed Acquisition?

Adobe, owner of both Day Software and Scene 7 DAM/ECM vendors announced yesterday that they had bought up Auditude, developers of a video advertising platform:

Adobe also plans to integrate Auditude with the Adobe Digital Marketing Suite, which consists of integrated analytics and optimization products to collect and unleash the power of customer insight. For example, using the Suite, customers can identify the most effective marketing and content delivery strategies and ad placements as well as create relevant, personalized and consistent customer experiences across channels, such as onsite, video, display, email, social and mobile. The Suite enables Adobe customers to better maximize marketing ROI and advertising yield, which ultimately can positively impact the bottom line.” [Read More]

The acquisition probably has more to do with protecting Adobe’s fragile position with the Flash video market (of which online ads are a crucial component) but there are some potential sub-plots to this story which have relevance for the Digital Asset Management industry.  Video is currently one of the key drivers of the DAM market since many end users lack an existing solution which they can just make do with (unlike static media such as images or documents).  Evidently, if one agrees with the proposition that DAM and WCM are in a protracted convergence phase then Adobe has the raw materials to enable them to potentially dominate the video DAM market and this provides a key piece of that overall puzzle.

A factor limiting Adobe’s potential, however, is their less than amazing track record at actually integrating their acquisitions into the rest of their businesses without losing interest or doing damage to the products they paid so much for originally.  Flash is a case in point with this and I would also wonder why they need two separate DAM vendors (with products that don’t work with each other) right now too.   The inability of the mega-vendors to make the right decisions and develop an end-user ecosystem that can fully support ultra low-cost commodity DAM is probably what is keeping a lot of smaller shops in the game right now, but for how long?

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