Why the Digital Content NewFronts Are Going Bicoastal This Year

The 2-week advertising bazaar is being split between coasts and weeks

Yuliya Kim: Sources: Getty Images
Headshot of Chris Ariens

The Interactive Advertising Bureau, operator of the Digital Content NewFronts, is changing things up this year. The 2018 version of the two-week advertising marketplace will take place on each coast. The first part will be the week of April 30 in New York City, and the second event will take place later this year on the West Coast. In the past, the NewFronts were two back-to-back weeks a week before the annual TV upfront presentations.

“We listened to the feedback we heard from the buy side that two weeks has been great but kind of exhausting,” said Anna Bager, evp of industry initiatives at the IAB. “We also felt that because digital video is running throughout the year, it made sense to bring a second wave to the West Coast.”

So far, 14 digital media companies are signed up for the first week. They include original partners YouTube, Hulu and DigitasLBi as well as Oath, which in past years presented as two distinct companies: AOL and Yahoo. “They are two of the founding partners that are now one and we’re excited to see what they have to say,” Bager said.

Also presenting in New York will be traditional media players like BBC News, The New York Times and Condé Nast, which continue to greatly expand their ad-supported digital offerings. Also presenting is Meredith Corp. following its $2.8 billion acquisition of Time Inc., which had been a NewFronts mainstay.

“Meredith saw great value in the platform,” Bager said, adding that with the combined Time and Meredith brands, there’s “an even larger audience and reach” for buyers to hear about.

While Bager couldn’t reveal which companies might participate in the second event, which will be in the fourth quarter of 2018 in Los Angeles, she did say the split version has elicited “positive feedback from the buy and sell sides” of the brand marketing ecosystem.

“One week is a nice size that fits well between the cable and TV upfronts, and we’re really looking forward to continuing the conversation throughout the year,” Bager said.

The IAB will handle both East Coast and West Coast event logistics and marketing. Adweek is the media partner with the IAB in the Digital Content NewFronts.

Click here for the 2018 NewFronts New York schedule.

@ChrisAriens chris.ariens@adweek.com Chris Ariens is the managing editor and director of video at Adweek.