Adobe Launch Extension Review for Constant Data Element

Adobe Launch Extension Review for Constant Data Element. This one will be super simple, as one very basic thing is done by this extension. It allows you to define a constant value as a data element. There is no configuration screen for Extension – and it doesn’t have to be there. This extension solves the problem that there is no template in Adobe Launch to define constants. You would normally either have to write a string directly in the rule or use a Custom Code Data Element to return a string (I never do this). Here it is in the marketplace:

Constant Data Element

So why would someone want to use a Constant Data Element? There are lots of reasons. One is that I’ve constructed page names in Adobe Analytics using partial strings that I’ve manually typed into the interface – several times. While these values aren’t regularly changing and they aren’t dynamically set by a data layer, I still want consistency (typos CAN happen) and realistically… it will eventually change. While you can use Tagtician to track down each individual rule where you’ve manually set these values – that’s a waste of time. As simple as it is, having something handy like this extension in Adobe Launch might encourage you to think about your implementation differently… and that’s a good thing.

Data Elements

Let’s break down the interface and see what the output looks like. This should be pretty straightforward.

Constant Data Element Interface

Concise. For this example, I will type “Hello, world!” where you see “Put a value here”. My expectation is when I check the Data Element it will return Hello, world!

Input: Hello, world!

Output: Hello, world! (string)

Now let’s try with an integer!

Input: 42

Output: 42 (string)

Constant Data Element Values

Interesting! So if you’re thinking about using this to do some calculation stuff, remember that all outputs are strings (as of v1.0.2).

Summary

This will probably be one of the most under-utilized extensions out there. In my opinion, it should be part of the Core extension. As practitioners, we need to continuously evolve the way we think about our work. CSS evolved into the Sass syntax because we learned that typing the same thing over and over again didn’t make sense. Even if we only set the value once when we stand up the Launch implementation… in 6 months, you’ll start seeing redundancies. Post 12 months, you’ll wish you had used the Constant Data Element extension. In terms of where I would improve… I think it would make sense to have a checkbox to “force as a string”. I would want to be able to leverage a Boolean or integer. Other than that, this is a super nifty and straightforward extension!

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