Pixability made its debut at dmexco last week, a strategic step in our international expansion, which we officially kicked off earlier this month with our EMEA MD Chris Bennett, based out of our new London office.
Our overall impression of dmexco? A well-produced, deliberate, and highly productive event, complete with flashy booths, engaging discussion, and ample networking. Throughout our discussions at dmexco, three key themes were pervasive:
- The new agency-client equation. Media agencies shared the floor with tech players at dmexco, manning their own branded stands which isn’t common at most industry shows. It’s indicative of the new agency-client equation in the digital age. Now more than ever, agencies have a value proposition to uphold, especially after the barrage of major media reviews earlier in the year. The shake-up is largely being driven by brand demand for media transparency, reporting accuracy, and even more effective use of technology.
- The walled gardens. YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram strategy was a big talking point – on and off the stage. Specifically how do the dynamics and tech stack of each differ? What kind of content does each platform demand, how should brand advertising goals differ, and how should each be measured and compared? As these platforms continue their aggressive video advertising push (Facebook announced new viewability and transparency levels mid-conference), the industry is rife with confusion around appropriate advertising strategy and media allocation. We see the future as an app-centric one, and advertisers need to smarten up about the challenges and opportunities of each platform, especially if reaching the younger, cord-cutting audience is a priority.
- New threat looming. Transparency, viewability, and fraud were temporarily overshadowed by the industry’s latest crisis in the spotlight – ad blocking. What will the rise of ad blocking software mean for the industry, and how should marketers navigate the threat? Though ad blocking could have serious industry implications, we see a greater call to arms for precisely targeted, relevant advertising that engages, entertains or educates, and fosters a positive user experience. Brands should not fear ad blocking, rather embrace it as a vehicle to generate more meaningful engagement with consumers.
After a dynamic two days in Cologne, dmexco has solidified its place on our list of not-to-be-missed global events for brand advertisers, agency professionals, and the tech ecosystem that is driving our industry’s future.