On the previous occasion I attended the Performance Marketing Insights conference it was called the A4U Expo and was situated at the ExCel in the London Docklands. Despite the rebrand and relocation to the heart of Westminster some things never change from the sights and sounds of the huge exhibition hall, an appealing list of guest speakers (including some of iProspect’s very own) and the sight of delegates striking up conversations and negotiating deals whilst subtly trying to read each other’s name badges.
One of the key themes at this year’s two day conference was the ever increasing importance of mobile and the effectiveness of cross-device tracking. Kevin Edwards, Strategy Director at Affiliate Window, went into more detail in his presentation entitled ‘Revealed: The Hidden Commission Killer in Affiliate Marketing’. It was standing room only (what better proof that this is still the ‘year of mobile’) as he presented Affiliate Window’s cross-device tracking solution and the effectiveness it can deliver for campaigns.
A number of short seminars put on with the IAB also focused on effective targeting and tracking. They carried out three different 101 presentations looking at mobile, content and affiliate marketing. During the mobile presentation I was surprised that the subject of intrusive advertising wasn’t broached, despite an example of how a well-known retailer conducts geo-targeting via mobile display. Daniel Lancioni, Head of Affiliates at MediaCom, rounded things off with a presentation defining the role of affiliate marketing, as well as raising a few eyebrows when he quoted a recent statistic - courtesy of research conducted by Smart Insights - which declared affiliate marketing as the most sought after digital skill to improve upon.
The final session I attended included iProspect’s very own Chief Performance Officer, Ben Sutherland. Ben was joined by two other panelists for a reflective and thought provoking discussion around the ‘Changing Face of the Network Agency’, which was well chaired by Jon Myers. One area of discussion concerned the integration of digital teams and channels within a network agency. It included the belief that for teams to truly integrate there has to be both a technological (automated) and a hands on (manual) solution, as well the having the will and desire of the clients to do so.
Despite 1970’s esque roller disco being on the agenda for that evening’s festivities (which regrettably I was unable to attend) I left the conference with the firm belief that Performance Marketing Insights remains an important date in the diary for any performance marketer with a keen eye on current as well as future trends.