DMEXCO @Home – Virtual at Scale

10/02 By IAS team

Following in the footsteps of Cannes Lions, Advertising Week and many of the major calendar events for the advertising industry, this year’s DMEXCO was a little different. This year there were no Koelnmesse halls to traverse, and no 10,000 steps to tot up whilst networking from one booth to another. With no booth parties and no afterparties, there was a concern that the 2020 digital event may fall flat. Luckily, the content carried the event through, with the digital advertising industry’s best and brightest out in force to educate and entertain us. Like a Netflix for the digital advertising industry, the choice was seemingly endless. Here we pick out the top 3 key messages we took away from DMEXCO@home 2020. 

Not just the Cookie Monster obsessed with cookies

The prospect of no third-party cookies can be frightening to a digital industry that has built foundations reliant on this technology. Audience targeting in a cookie-less world was a key theme at this year’s festival, with many sessions talking about “future-proofing” and privacy when third-party cookies are deprecated. And it’s understandable that we want to discuss this topic – our own IAS research on how data privacy and contextual advertising clearly shows that while consumers care deeply about their privacy, they are also more receptive to ads that are contextually relevant to the content they are consuming, they prefer to be contextually targeted. We have gone from cookies to context, and context has become critical. 

Ad fraud may keep you awake at night

Fraud is no longer limited to personal finance with tactics such as credit card cloning. Fraudsters have looked to take advantage of growing digital advertising budgets and siphon off ad spend for their own illegal gain. This was a hot topic of discussion at this year’s DMEXCO@home. With concerns that some in the digital advertising industry have become complacent and that ad fraud prevention is seen as just a check box to tick. But as new advertising technologies are developed, fraudsters continue to innovate in tandem. And at a time when marketing budgets are so precious, no one can afford to not take measures to proactively detect and prevent ad fraud. Plus, with CTV projected to become the hotspot for ad placements in the future, are you prepared for the next frontier of ad fraud? Check out our IAS ad fraud guide here to get a full overview of the impact of ad fraud and how to tackle it.

We are more future-focused than ever

2020 has been a turbulent year, and the DMEXCO@home event could not be expected to pass without a mention of the coronavirus pandemic. What we saw as a positive theme and discussion point throughout the 2 days was that the digital advertising industry can thrive when faced with new challenges. Many of the sessions concluded with, what comes next for digital advertising – a “new normal”, or the old normal. We heard how organisations like Sky, Swarovski, and the BBC have pushed their innovation further than ever before to ensure they remain competitive in challenging circumstances. And at IAS, we are no different, during the last six months, we have used our latest innovations to address the biggest challenges facing digital advertising today. We have introduced new innovative solutions to improve transparency in programmatic buying, with our Total Visibility product; to improve YouTube campaign brand suitability targeting and performance optimisation – with our Channel Science product built in partnership with Channel Factory; and to drive efficiencies for our customers – with our IAS Automated Tag with Google.  

We’re not going to pretend that we didn’t miss Cologne this year and the chance to network and meet our partners and customers from across the world – we did. But DMEXCO@Home has taught us that next year, no matter the circumstances, we will all be together sharing our insights and innovations once more.