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Key Takeaways from DMEXCO 2017

DMEXCO is over for yet another year. With some of the most influential leaders within the ad-tech space making their way to Cologne for the biggest advertising and technology conference, this year’s event highlighted a number trends and industry discussions.



With over 50,000 people attending over the course of 2 days, DMEXCO is without doubt the biggest ad tech conference in the world. Unsurprisingly, as the technology within the sector has evolved there are more technology vendors exhibiting than ever before ranging from real-time bidding, header bidding and programmatic technology providers.

Headway’s newly appointed VP of Video, Tamir Shub, was at the show for his fourth year and shares with us his key takeaways from this year’s event.

GDPR is dominating the conversation

With the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) coming into effect in 2018, there is an industry-wide debate which was apparent at this year’s show. A large percentage of advertisers rely on data as a key part of their operation. Therefore it’s essential to work with high-quality partners in order to comply with the changing policies and regulations.

Agencies and in-house advertisers are currently investing a lot of money and allocating budgets to ensure they remain compliant and maintain trust which is a priority for the industry at the moment.


AI will transform the industry

Artificial Intelligence continued to be a prominent discussion point at this year’s show and became one of this year’s most used buzzwords. AI is set to be a real game changer for the advertising industry.

In particular, a key theme that was discussed by advertisers was the ads.txt initiative which has been put in place to allow publishers to fight fraud. Whilst this initiative hasn’t been widely adopted yet, Headway is currently taking steps to encourage all of its direct publishers to adopt the ads.txt initiative. We can anticipate the discussions around ads.txt to continue long into 2018 as ad fraud continues to be a prominent challenge for the industry.

Direct partnerships more valuable

In addition to GDPR and AI dominating the conversation, we are also seeing the industry shift its focus from acquiring third-party traffic. As ad-fraud and ad-blocking remain prominent challenges across the industry, more advertisers are seeing the benefits of having direct partnerships with publishers and are able to provide them with unique media assets for their campaigns. This is particularly becoming a trend with video ads as brands and agencies are not interested in third-party that has been recycled through an exchanges over and over again.

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