5 September 2023
Behind every great conference presence is an army of marketers grinding away at a daunting and seemingly endless event organisation list, while searching for a clever and unique brand presence — all within the bounds of a budget.
After a two-year-long break due to the pandemic, we returned to the International Broadcasting Convention — IBC 2022, a little rusty, but in full force.
This year we made some unique and rather daring branding decisions — such as our immersive metro station and living room themed meeting rooms. Here’s what drove these creative ideas and what we managed to accomplish over the course of this four-day event.
Bringing adtech to life
As marketers, my team is constantly faced with the questions:
“How can we portray the core competencies of our company when the foundations of our products are hidden behind code?”
“How can we tangibly demonstrate our brand’s claim ‘Defining the future of video advertising’?”
When conceptualising the designs for our IBC presence — meeting rooms, swag, booth, et cetera — we attempted to, yet again, answer these key questions. We arrived at the theme “TV Everywhere”, which became the basis for unpacking not just our key offerings, but those of our partners — Yospace, Realytics, and Bedrock — who together comprise RTL Group’s adtech and streaming champions.
The smartclip experience
Located in Hall 5 — “Content Everywhere”, the smartclip experience began at our meeting rooms — co-sponsored by Realytics and Yospace. Although they were only intended for meetings, it was important for us to conceptualise a design for the facade of the rooms that would capture the attention and interest of attendees passing by.
And that we did.
Walking down what seemed like an endless mirage of blank white walls with basic branding on the facades of each meeting room, it was hard to not notice the giant eye — where TV consumption begins — on the exterior facade of our meeting rooms.
Given the countless opportunistic meetings that took place as a result of people spontaneously stopping by to ask more about “The future of TV advertising” — printed across the door to our meeting room — we were reminded that taking design risks pays off.
When walking into the first meeting room, visitors had the sense they were walking directly into a metro station — with floor-to-ceiling images of people waiting on a platform looking at mobile devices, busy escalators, and an idling train.
Our intent was to recreate one of the most common real-world environments as a way to illustrate the idea that TV is “everywhere”, and consumers now have the power to tap into TV with any device, in any place, and at any time. Likewise, advertisers need to be everywhere the consumer goes.
Upon stepping into the second meeting room, visitors felt as if they were walking straight into a living room. With couches, a coffee table, a cosy rug — all centred around a television.
The research revealed that while on-the-go viewing is still popular, the pandemic sparked a resurgence of viewers returning to the living room to consume content. This finding inspired us to print “The future of TV is TV” across one of the walls to further illustrate the idea that while technology will continue to evolve, the TV is still the favoured format for viewing video content.
Passerbyers were immediately captivated by an 85-inch screen playing a showreel that highlighted key developments across RTL Group’s adtech and streaming companies over the past 10 years.
Yospace’s booth design provided the perfect space for visitors to learn more about our companies, sit for a chat, and view product demos. For smartclip, it’s not really plausible to show a demo of an ad server, so we opted to utilise our demo space to feature a captivating video that outlines our Addressable TV ad break replacement solution — an aesthetic form of product presentation that is uncommon in our market.
From popcorn to cosy socks, visitors rounded off the experience by receiving a swag bag full of all the essentials necessary for the perfect TV night — especially for an adtech enthusiast.
Reconnecting after the pandemic
Something we really missed about in-person events, like IBC, was the opportunity to strike up important conversations and make impactful connections with other members of the industry.
While we enjoyed connecting in person again, we also really appreciated the opportunities we had to speak to a broader audience about our company.
During an interview with IBC 365, Thomas Servatius, Co-CEO at smartclip, highlighted how good it is to be back at in-person events, and especially how IBC offers a unique opportunity to meet people you would not otherwise meet. Thomas further shared details on what smartclip plans to roll out in the coming months as well as predictions on the future of our industry.
Thomas was also invited by Broadcast Magazine Netherlands to provide an overview of smartclip as a company and dive deeper into our solutions with two large groups of broadcasters and adtech decision-makers. Along with our interview opportunities, we were able to connect with many insiders across the industry and look forward to seeing where these connections lead.
With all of the excitement surrounding the convention, it was important to us that we got outside and experienced some of the city. As a way to unwind, we invited our clients and partners for a boat ride along the canals of Amsterdam. Although the weather wasn’t on our side, we still managed to make the most of it.
It was great to be able to interact with everyone in person again. After all of the promising conversations and connections we made, we are eager to see what developments the next year brings to the industry and look forward to returning to IBC in 2023.