DMEXCO 2019 highlights

September 11, 2019 Chris Simpson

The largest adtech conference in Europe has now officially wrapped up.

As media folk are leaving Cologne in droves, it’s time to look back at some of the highlights of the event,

Those who are DMEXCO veterans would have noticed that there were fewer stands this year. The number was reduced by 300, rumor has it. Whether or not that had anything to do with the new organisers who have taken over since last year, I will let those closer to the event logistics debate it.

Did they go for quality over quantity? There were certainly a lot of great solutions out there, perhaps too many to count.

Some trends / observations that stand out:

1) Traditional agencies are a bit inward-looking at the moment.

Whether or not they are taking time to reposition themselves in order to later reemerge stronger remains to be seen, but the agency corner looked rather “light” both in terms of set up and visitors. Perhaps the pressures the industry is experiencing have started taking their toll.

2) GDPR is on everyone’s lips.

A year has gone by and an increasing number of contextual targeting iterations are starting to emerge. Tracking and data solutions on the other hand still have to tread very carefully.

3) Enter the engineering era of adtech.

Quite a few stands were populated by engineers or engineer / sales hybrids instead of the usual sales reps. At the very least there was always some gifted techie in hand to answer the tough questions. Maybe a sign that more of the tough questions are being asked in the first place?

4) Connected TV and DOOH are coming but are taking the scenic route.

The eternal optimist within me was hoping for more progress in this field. Alas! Maybe next year, roadmap permitting.

5) This year’s jargon bingo: Blockchain and stuff.

Whilst AI is slowly coming into it’s own Blockchain remains mostly a gimmick or something panelists mention to make sure they hit their mandatory conference jargon quota. Pro tip: it’s even less credible if you add “and stuff” at the end of the sentence.

Overall, it was a great environment to see old friends and make some new ones. There were plenty of serendipitous meetings of minds though significantly more fruitful during the first day, pre-hangover!

Sharing is caring so please feel free to comment with your unique point of view of the event.

See you in 2020!


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