Adobe Systems


Company: Adobe Systems Incorporated
Entered by: A&R Edelman
Company Description: Adobe revolutionizes how the world engages with ideas and information – anytime, anywhere and through any medium. For more information, visit
Nomination Category: Company, Office & Product Awards Categories
Nomination Sub Category: Best New Product or Service

Nomination Title: Sidestepping Apple’s Shadow… Adobe Lightroom Steals the Spotlight

1. Tell the story about this nominated product or service (up to 500 words). Describe its function, features, benefits, and sales to date. You may include hyperlinks to product photos and data sheets. IMPORTANT: Begin each link with http://, and enclose each link in square brackets; for example, []:

Sometimes new product launch plans that have been in place for months have to
be tossed out the window. Adobe, long dominant in professional photo software,
was getting ready to launch a new product in the Photoshop family called
Lightroom. But Apple made a surprise move with the announcement of Aperture, a
direct competitor to Adobe Lightroom. The Adobe PR team challenge: sidestep
Apple’s long shadow and reclaim the spotlight.

Overnight the Adobe PR team mobilized its efforts to implement an entirely new
launch strategy and introduce its new Lightroom product as a pre-release beta
version that was open to customer feedback. The PR team deployed its
creativity, knowledge of Web 2.0 media and fresh grass-roots initiatives to
win the battle against Apple’s powerful marketing machine. The outcome: Adobe
Photoshop Lightroom outsold Apple Aperture’s 2006 annual product sales in its
first two weeks since launch by 10 thousand copies.

PR Objectives
• Steal Apple’s thunder with the launch of Adobe Lightroom as a public
beta and turn the battle into a head-to-head competition
• Delay customer purchase decisions by raising awareness of Adobe’s
product and persuading people to question Apple’s offering
• Portray Lightroom as a new way to develop software – where customers
help create the product

PR Campaigns that made a difference
- Competitive Education Tour
- Launch Adobe Lightroom at Apple’s key tradeshow, Macworld
- Employing New Media
- VIP feedback program
- Adobe Iceland Adventure
- Project: Photoshop and Lightroom Education Road Show
- Lightroom Pre-Release Workshops

Lightroom beta campaign success can be measured in several ways: New grass-
roots Lightroom community, abundant new media press coverage and how well
Lightroom beta was received as compared to Apple’s Aperture.
• Within the first two weeks of the beta launch, over 200,000 customers
downloaded Lightroom and over 1,500 people signed up to participate in product
forums. Over 500,000 people downloaded Lightroom beta during the 12-month beta
• Aperture sales dwindled as other digital imaging product sales
remained relatively constant. Per NPD, Aperture sold 2400 units in December
2005, 500 units in January 2006 and 300 units in February 2006 while Photoshop
showed no similar drop in sales. The press noted Aperture’s weaknesses and
hinted that Lightroom beta might develop into an even stronger product,
effectively stalling Apple’s sales.
• Adobe Photoshop Lightroom outsold Apple Aperture’s 2006 annual product
sales in its first two weeks since launch by 10 thousand copies.
• Lightroom beta and version 1.0 received 44 positive reviews and was
included in over 240 articles, amounting to over $2 million in ad equivalency.
One-third of Apple’s reviews included discussion of Lightroom.
• At launch of the final Lightroom product in January 2007, the New York
Times Circuits' Ian Austen called Lightroom “a study in simplicity and
elegance.” Twenty-two top-tier outlets covered the official launch of
Photoshop Lightroom 1.0 reaching over 8 million readers with a total ad value
of $758,937.
• The Adobe product team was particularly thrilled with the results as
the announcement happened on the same day as Microsoft Vista and Adobe PDF
• Since its launch in January 2006, Lightroom received over 21,000 blog
hits. Macworld’s Jackie Dove noted, “When the topic circles around the soon-to-
be-released Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 1.0 these days, much of what I hear in
the middle of my brain is buzz. Literally. There has been so much buzz
surrounding Lightroom for so long…”

2. List hyperlinks to any online news stories, press releases, product reviews, or other documents that support the claims made in the section above. IMPORTANT: Begin each link with http://, and enclose each link in square brackets; for example, []:

Press Releases

Prominent Coverage
Adobe announces Lightroom: David Girard of Ars Technica builds up the battle
between Apple and Adobe in his Lightroom first look, complete with a faux boxing
poster starring Steve Jobs and Bruce Chizen. Girard emphasizes system
requirements as a major point of competition between Aperture and Lightroom. He
concludes noting that consumer will be the winner here with increased
competition making both products better.

ArsTechnica First Impressions:
Adobe Lightroom beta: first impressions: ArsTechnica does not review Beta
programs, but did post a first impressions story. Girard takes a closer look at
the modular design of Lightroom. He also dispels the myth that Adobe is going
back to the Mac and forgetting Windows. He credits the move to the fact that
professional photographers are largely on Macs and they are the primary target
of the beta. He notes a Windows version is to come.



IDG's Macworld Magazine Editors Announce the 2006 Macworld Best of Show Awards;
14 Products Are Recognized for Innovation and Excellence: Lightroom is awarded a
Best of Show award by Macworld editors. This press release crossed the wires at
1:00 p.m. today. Lightroom was one of 14 products recognized for innovation and

Creative Pro:

· Take a First Look at Adobe's Lightroom: Ben Long posts a lengthy
first look at Lightroom and details what he likes in the beta and what he’d like
to see in future updates. Overall he thinks “Adobe's decision to openly beta
test Lightroom is a very good one.” The most exciting feature to Long is the
extensibility of Lightroom, and he speculates that this could foster “innovative
development” like that seen with Photoshop’s plug-in architecture.


Adobe Lightroom: All-New Digital Imaging Solution for Professional
Photographers: Uwe Steinmueller posts a complete essay on Lightroom. He provides
a complete wish-list and a list of errors he has found in the beta. In
conclusion he notes, “Lightroom is a much needed application. Especially because
Apple's Aperture has in our opinion some fundamental design flaws.”


Adobe Set To Compete With Apple: Forbes covers the release of Lightroom Beta,
noting that, “the software has an intuitive feel with easily negotiable modules
that focus directly on a single image.” The article also calls Lightroom the
first of the “superpowerful software” that will result from the Macromedia

LuminousLandscapes (First Look):
A First-Look & Primer: Michael Reichmann takes a first look at Lightroom calling
it an example of photographer’s next-generation software. Reichmann refers to
his Aperture review where he called the software unusable. He details the
development history of Lightroom and, more generally, Adobe. The first look
continues on to discuss the major features of Lightroom in fair detail,
concluding with an overall positive outlook.

Macworld (First Look):
First Look: Adobe Lightroom beta: Derrick Story of Macworld opens his first look
by noting, “It looks like Adobe did their homework. Lightroom is powerful,
intuitive, and tailored specifically for the serious shooter.” He reviews basic
functionality and notes that if price is kept reasonable, Lightroom will be a
real “winner.”

Jeff Schewe’s Lightroom/Shadowland development story. This has been linked to
numerous times in other reviews.

Photo District News:

Adobe Updates Lightroom: PDN Online posts the Lightroom Beta 2 media alert.

· Adobe - 'Lightroom sees 100K downloads'

American Photo
Jonathan Barkey
Hands On: Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 1.0

Barkey calls PS Lightroom an “amazingly full-featured, all-in-one imaging
solution for serious shooters” and thinks the non-destructive editing technology
“points the way toward further software advances.”

Jeremy Schultz
Photoshop Lightroom Ends Beta, Available For Pre-Order
Designorati posts a news story on PS Lightroom, highlighting features, pricing
and availability. Writer Jeremy Schultz lists a few improved features including
keywording tools for searching and sorting, import dialog, Key Metadata Browser,
and Clone, Healing, Hue/Saturation and Luminance tools. Schultz states that “one
big benefit of Photoshop Lightroom over Aperture is in its system requirements”
that will make the software accessible to more users.
Jennifer LeClaire
Adobe Flips Switch on Lightroom 1.0
Newsfactor posts a news story on PS Lightroom that highlights its new features
and functionalities. The article quotes IDC analyst Chris Chute, who discusses
the benefits of PS Lightroom over Aperture, saying, "Adobe has more experience
serving these customers, so the workflow is a little easier. You don't need
super hardware to make Lightroom run and it's streamlined a little bit more than
Aperture.” Chute also states that PS Lightroom will fit into the digital imaging

Better Shoeboxes for Digital Photos
New York Times, Ian Austen
New York Times’ Circuits section features Photoshop Lightroom its cover story on
photo management software. Writer Ian Austen notes the recent announcement of
Photoshop Lightroom 1.0 and recommends the software, calling it “a study in
simplicity and elegance.”

The Bridge to Lightroom - Macworld
“When the topic circles around the soon-to-be-released Adobe Photoshop Lightroom
1.0 these days, much of what I hear in the middle of my brain is buzz.
Literally. There has been so much buzz surrounding Lightroom for so long…”

What to Expect With Lightroom 1.0 – Macworld
“It’s clear that Adobe used the last few months to refine and improve upon an
already impressive product.”

Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 1.0 - PC Magazine,1895,2096861,00.asp
“The lengthy public beta period has given the company plenty of time to develop
Adobe Photoshop Lightroom into a robust, intuitive, and exceedingly helpful tool

for managing your digital-imaging workflow.”

3. Provide a brief (up to 100 words) biography about the leader(s) of the team that developed this nominated product or service:

Chief Executive Officer Bruce Chizen’s customer-focused vision has transformed
Adobe into one of the world’s largest and most diversified software companies
in terms of revenue, global reach and breadth of products. Since his promotion
to CEO in 2000, Chizen has more than doubled Adobe's revenue and turned a
company known mainly for its popular design products into one of the most
significant forces in the software industry today.

Under Chizen’s leadership, Adobe acquired Macromedia, Inc. in 2005 in a
transaction valued at approximately $3.4 billion. In addition to growing
Adobe’s leadership in design and publishing software, Chizen has led the
company’s expansion into new markets, from enterprises and knowledge workers
to high-end consumers.