Can Cologne, Germany become the next hot spot for technology conferences? Dmexco has been on marketers’ radar for a few years now, and this year, organizers are hoping it will become one of their go-to conferences alongside South by Southwest and CES.
Execs including Snap chief strategy officer Imran Khan, Facebook’s Carolyn Everson and Tom Buday, Nestlé’s global head of marketing, keynoted last year’s conference, so expect more high-profile speakers when the conference announces its 2017 schedule in July. The two-day conference will take place Sept. 13-14 at Cologne’s Koelnmesse exhibition center.
As more brands and agencies invest in digital, the conference’s core audience has expanded from “hardcore ad-tech platforms” to topics that big brand marketers relate to, said Travis Johnson, global president of IPG-owned Ansible. IPG is among a handful of holding companies that have had a presence at Dmexco over the past couple of years, including an exhibit last year that showed clients how a handful of ad-tech companies such as Placed and Samba TV reach actual humans instead of data-backed targets.
“Where it started off was in a very techie place—every DSP, data provider, email marketing software, CRM solution was exhibiting—but now it’s actually gone broader and more [toward] consumer-related technologies all underpinned with what is the data that we can get off experiences and how can we use that for marketing purposes,” Johnson said.
This year, the conference is adding a new hall for a total of six areas, which Dmexco claims will increase space for exhibitors by 15 percent. The sixth hall will be geared toward startups including new exhibitor CleverClip, a Bern, Switzerland-based company that creates videos for clients like TedX and Swisscom. U.S.-based DoubleVerify and Appboy are also newcomers for 2017. According to Dmexco, more than 900 companies have registered to exhibit, and more than 50 percent of those companies are expected to be international.
“This is where the forward thinkers and global leaders of digital business come together in order to discuss the ongoing trends, themes and standards in the marketing communications and technology industry and directly translate them into real-world business deals—more than any other event in the digital sphere, Dmexco stands for genuine business and reveals the commercial potential of tomorrow’s digital economy,” said Dmexco co-founders Christian Muche and Frank Schneider in a statement. “International companies use Dmexco as their gateway to Europe and further and as a business platform for establishing worldwide relationships and making direct contacts.”