At the booths, on the conference stages, and in personal discussions, the key topics of dmexco 2017 in Cologne, Germany, were easy to identify. For marketers and advertisers, it was all about native, programmatic, and mobile. For publishers, it was all about smart data and user control.
In the run-up to the dmexco, we announced our partnership with AppNexus (Outbrain Programmatic Access), the acquisition of the Native DSP Zemanta and the opening of our network to numerous SSPs (Outbrain Extended Network). With these actions, we aim to combine the efficiency of Programmatic advertising with the effectiveness of native advertising. We saw that we hit the sweet spot during the meetings at our booth, where many customers had a huge interest in the new possibilities Outbrain could offer.
Creativity in Times of Programmatic
Our CEO and co-Founder, Yaron Galai, discussed programmatic’s challenges in the panel “Programmatic Creativity – When Content Marketing Turns Smart.” He urged listeners to put content first and create emotional stories. As Yaron messaged, data can help to get insights on the content and help with the distribution, but it should not be the key to the creative process. Said Yaron: “Creators should put their focus on the content of the TV series, e.g. Games of Thrones, and not obsess too much about the TV guide that directs the viewer to the series.” Outbrain then helps with the strategic distribution.
In times of banner blindness and the skip button, more and more agencies and companies recognize the possibilities of native advertising and have shifted their budgets accordingly. Many of our conversations at our booth involved our extensive reach. If advertisers would like to leverage the trust of top publishers and reach high-quality users, Outbrain is an easy win. However, as we also underscored, if marketers want to really see success with their campaigns, it is also crucial that the content after the click delivers what the recommendation in our module promises.
Interest Drives Results
Daniel Holm, Head of Sales DACH at Outbrain, explained our claim that “Interest Drives Results.” With our interest data of our more than 1 billion users and our engagement and conversion data, we can deliver the content that is most interesting and relevant to each user — capturing their attention all the way to inspiring their next action. Our new features like Lookalike Audiences, Multiple Conversions or App Analytics are especially powerful at engaging relevant audiences and achieving hard KPI goals.
Analytics and the measurement of hard targets will continue to gain importance in the future. However, as Yaron Galai said in his panel, the focus should be on the story and the emotions that are connected to a story or a brand.
Marc Pritchard of Procter & Gamble also summed up in a very well received keynote: “Good ideas are more important than ever before. Technology helps to connect these ideas with the right people.”