The 2021 IAB NewFronts Reveal How Media Innovation Mirrors Current Events & Culture

The 2021 IAB NewFronts kicked-off last Monday. The NewFronts take place every spring, kickstarting discussions around critical media issues and the future of the media industry.

Below are key trends and takeaways from last week’s presentations:

  • The buzz word of the week was “incrementality”—presenters touted incremental reach driven by CTV and incrementality in advertising investments (ROI).
  • Diversity and inclusion drive innovation. Presenters pledged to improve diversity, equality and inclusion. The IAB encouraged members to invest in the Inclusion Institute, which they launched last year.
  • The pandemic accelerated and amplified digital commerce and CTV usage growth resulting in consumer behavior change. Presenters proposed increased investment in digital video and unveiled tech offerings to drive personalized, shoppable, leaned in ad experiences.
  • Nearly every presentation highlighted the targeting tools and first-party data owned by large media publishers and platforms allowing advertisers to reach — and engage with — specific audiences.
  • During the pandemic, flexibility was a priority among advertisers, leading brands and agencies to push for more favorable cancelation options. CTV platform owners like Roku recognize the opportunity that openness provides. This year, Roku announced 2-Day cancelation options and unlimited expansion opportunity.

Conferences like the NewFronts are a reminder of how much the media industry is a reflection of culture and current events. Media changes are often shaped by what’s going on in the world. Flexibility will certainly be the key as the cultural and technological future remains uncertain.

This post was written by Shana King, Account Manager.

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