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Did any of you get invited to take this survey?

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David Lawrence
Did any of you get invited to take this survey?
on Oct 30, 2013 at 9:40:38 pm



This is a screenshot of an email I received from Adobe Research last week. It says it's a market research study on photography and design products but it's actually something else. The real purpose of this survey is to measure customer interest in subscription verses perpetual licensing of Adobe software products.

It's a long survey and I spent 45 minutes on it. One section has a matrix of Adobe photo products with various possible CC subscription prices. This section has 14 pages of the matrix offering well over 100 price possibilities for CC. Each is contrasted with perpetual license offerings. You can probably guess what I selected each time. ;)

After that section, the survey noted that I preferred perpetual licensing and offered a field where I could write as much as I wanted to explain why. I made sure to emphasize that price wan't the problem.

Photography is obviously a place where Adobe seems vulnerable so it's no surprise it was the main focus of the survey; but they asked about the entire product line including video.

This survey seems like a good sign to me. Maybe a crack in the ice? Did any of you get an invite to take it?

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David Lawrence
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Mike Smith
Re: Did any of you get invited to take this survey?
on Oct 30, 2013 at 11:51:51 pm

I got invited to this survery - or a very similar one - last week.

I also indicated that price was not my only concern.

For me the chief concern was being able to OWN my software rather than just rent it and losing the ability to open projects if I ever stop subscribing.

I wrote a fairly lengthy response of my issues with their subscription-only model and how its a particular problem to Premiere Pro, which is not - and never has been - backward compatible.

I wrote about how perpetual licensing leaves users vulnerable when product offerings change of products get End-of-life'd. If we never owned it, then what ability will we have to keep using a product they decide to stop developing or stop offering?

I also indicated that if I ever create something with Premiere CC, I will have to be subscribed to ever open it in the future, unlike InDesign files or Photoshop files, which can be opened by older versions and oven non-Adobe software.

I also wrote about how I subscribe to an Autodesk product and am perfectly happy with it, because its a choice! Autodesk lets me keep using the software even if the subscription ends, which is a much more mature way to deal with users who'se business depends on such software.

I also wrote about how I never bought into the argument that Creative Cloud was about faster feature roll-out because Adobe's own investor guide's told a different story. ;-)

-Mike Smith


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Chris Pettit
Re: Did any of you get invited to take this survey?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 12:50:55 am

I've received previous survey emails from Adobe and from the Cow, but didn't get this one, (maybe because I'm Production Premium? Not sure.)

Is there a specific link to go to to take the survey? Thanks for bringing it to our attention David.

[David Lawrence] "This survey seems like a good sign to me. Maybe a crack in the ice? Did any of you get an invite to take it?"

I recently heard (from someone a lot closer to Adobe than I am) that there is a lot of concern and even division of opinion about long term subscription numbers at Adobe, and there is no consensus on how (or if) to adjust the offerings to make it all work. If true, this could explain why they promised policy adjustments and then went dead silent on us.

I'm still moderately optimistic. Companies that are in complete control of their markets and their customer loyalties don't offer sign-up discounts and they don't field repeated surveys to measure customer tolerance of a whole new way of doing business.

The simple existence of these surveys is telling.


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David Lawrence
Re: Did any of you get invited to take this survey?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 1:12:55 am

[Chris Pettit] "Is there a specific link to go to to take the survey? Thanks for bringing it to our attention David."

You're welcome Chris. The survey is recorded by a serialized URL so if I shared the link with you, it would simply take you to the thank you page saying the survey is complete. It's not cookie or browser-based.

I'm on Production Premium too, so hopefully you get an email soon.

[Chris Pettit] "The simple existence of these surveys is telling."

Yes. BTW, I've also heard similar things from folks closer to Adobe than me. I'm not holding my breath but I'm still optimistic. I just don't see how the long-term numbers work unless Adobe makes big changes to win back former customers like us.

_______________________
David Lawrence
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Gary Huff
Re: Did any of you get invited to take this survey?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 1:28:05 am

[Chris Pettit] "The simple existence of these surveys is telling."

Would have made more sense to have done this heavily back before they went all-in on the subscription model.

I really think Adobe needed at least one more year of perpetual license + Creative Cloud to get it all worked out.


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Ricardo Marty
Re: Did any of you get invited to take this survey?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 2:22:58 am

I revived the adobe survey last week. the first question asked which adobe programs i used, I selected the video programs and Photoshop I got a message stating that the survey was for Illustrator users and and was invited to register for the raffles.

Ricardo


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Paul Neumann
Re: Did any of you get invited to take this survey?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 3:04:04 am

I suppose the results of the survey could also totally validate the subscription as well, right? I have no idea. I've been looking at a LOT of stuff about SaaS models as the company I work for has several product lines that are headed that way. What keeps coming up is 1) Yes, it's a very disruptive marketing decision 2) Yes, revenue will suffer in the early stages but should level out and turn steadily profitable as a result of the service agreements and reduced development cycles 3) It's best to do it before your competition because most signs point to them planning to go to a SaaS model as well.

I don't know how (or even if) any of that applies to Adobe. Just sharing.


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Gary Huff
Re: Did any of you get invited to take this survey?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 3:10:29 am

[Paul Neumann] "I don't know how (or even if) any of that applies to Adobe. Just sharing."

Yes, it's possible that there's a miniature version of a reality distortion field going on and that, by and large, there are enough satisfied users that Adobe can simply maintain the current pricing indefinitely.

I personally know quite a lot of people on CC at the moment, and about 2/3rds are paying the full $50 per month.


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Paul Neumann
Re: Did any of you get invited to take this survey?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 3:19:48 am

I was talking with a friend of mine who owns a small agency earlier this week and he was thrilled with CC. Now they do mostly online/print work so in the past have been faithful Web Design Premium customers. He's very excited to be able to have access to all the video production products now.


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Ricardo Marty
Re: Did any of you get invited to take this survey?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 3:31:13 am

Is he a wannabe video pro?

Ricardo


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Paul Neumann
Re: Did any of you get invited to take this survey?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 12:12:19 pm

The added bonus of having a post-production suite added to his tools. The ability to bring an editor in and have good stuff to work with. He's not an editor. He knows that. He also owns his own agency. He sees value in it.


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David Lawrence
Re: Did any of you get invited to take this survey?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 4:06:28 am

[Gary Huff] "Yes, it's possible that there's a miniature version of a reality distortion field going on and that, by and large, there are enough satisfied users that Adobe can simply maintain the current pricing indefinitely. "

Or not. I think it's way too early to tell and agree with your earlier point that Adobe should have waited at least another year to work out kinks and conducted extensive market research (like this) before forcing rental on everyone.

_______________________
David Lawrence
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Gary Huff
Re: Did any of you get invited to take this survey?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 7:06:34 pm

[David Lawrence] "I think it's way too early to tell"

I agree that it's early. I think the big tell will be when they start moving to $50 a month en masse.


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David Lawrence
Re: Did any of you get invited to take this survey?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 7:17:12 pm

[Gary Huff] "I agree that it's early. I think the big tell will be when they start moving to $50 a month en masse."

Exactly right. They can't keep loss-leader pricing forever. Next year will be when the rubber hits the road and I think surveys like this are a sign Adobe knows significant churn is coming. I think they want to be ready with new offers when that time comes and I hope perpetual options will be part of the mix.

_______________________
David Lawrence
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facebook.com/dlawrence
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Chris Pettit
Re: Did any of you get invited to take this survey?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 3:21:01 am

[Paul Neumann] "It's best to do it before your competition because most signs point to them planning to go to a SaaS model as well."

All good points, except Adobe CC isn't a SaaS solution. Wiki excerpt:

Software as a service (SaaS, pronounced sæs or sɑs[1]), sometimes referred to as "on-demand software" supplied by ISVs or "Application-Service-Providers" (ASPs),[2] is a software delivery model[3] in which software and associated data are centrally hosted on the cloud.


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Paul Neumann
Re: Did any of you get invited to take this survey?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 3:31:46 am

Yeah, it's a hybrid to be sure. There's parts of it that are totally cloud that really are a great value prop. The local install of the creation programs is necessary I would think given the need for portability due to field work. I don't know. I do know that the programs my company is dealing with have no portability requirements so a SaaS model will solve a lot of constraints and in turn open up development for even more advancement of the products.


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Chris Pettit
Re: Did any of you get invited to take this survey?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 3:45:21 am

[Paul Neumann] "Yeah, it's a hybrid to be sure. There's parts of it that are totally cloud that really are a great value prop. "

The entire core set of CC applications are not SaaS. I have heard good arguments from many about how it might evolve over time into something different and more cloud based in the future, but at the moment Adobe Apps are no different from what they have always been, locally installed applications that reference locally stored data.


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Paul Neumann
Re: Did any of you get invited to take this survey?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 3:50:30 am

Yeah, I was referring to the Behance/ProSite/TypeKit/storage offerings that are part of CC.


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Chris Pettit
Re: Did any of you get invited to take this survey?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 3:52:37 am

[Paul Neumann] "Yeah, I was referring to the Behance/ProSite/TypeKit/storage offerings that are part of CC."

Yeah, I assumed that, just wanted to clarify. thanks


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Herb Sevush
Re: Did any of you get invited to take this survey?
on Oct 31, 2013 at 2:34:14 pm

[David Lawrence] " Did any of you get an invite to take it?"

I've taken other surveys but not this one. The other surveys didn't acknowledge that they were from Adobe, but rather about the NLE field in general, however it was obvious who they were from.

Herb Sevush
Zebra Productions
---------------------------
nothin' attached to nothin'
"Deciding the spine is the process of editing" F. Bieberkopf


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