Action Rocket at the IAB Upfronts AttentiON event

Last Thursday, we attended our first event in a while (and as a new team) – The IAB Upfronts at Facebook HQ in London.

The speakers were:
Ian Edwards, Facebook
Pete Buckley, Facebook
Gary Vaynerchuk, VaynerMedia
Dave Cornthwaite, Yes Tribe
Josie Naughton, Help Refugees

The topics covered included advertising, consumer behaviour & psychology, the mediums that were important right now and how companies should be focusing their attention and spend. Billboards and TV ads being grossly overpriced and social ads and influencer marketing being grossly under priced. One interesting statement that stood out from Gary Vaynerchuk was that the majority of FMCG companies aren’t going to be there in 30 years time because they are still spending on tv ads and billboards and not where people are actually focusing their attention.

Our main takeaway from the event probably had to be about the divide between creative teams, the finance department and what humans actually want/need. Pete planted the seed, talking about how the mediums that people use have changed and how we talk to people via those mediums are still evolving. Attention and brand awareness being a main focus. Mobile internet had grown the most in 4 years and is almost set to take over TV. Gary V carried this on expressing his amazement at how crazily underpriced something like a Facebook ad is and that there isn’t many brands who can afford to not be in this space. Teams should/could be creating 1000+ pieces of content per day for social media but they are limited with briefs, budgets, meetings and so on.


Applying this to email is pretty easy in this case. As an industry we have been harping on about mobile for as long as I can remember and as individuals, we have huge standards for our viewing experience on our handheld devices. I’m writing this on a train back to Suffolk and every single person in my line of sight has their face buried in their phones. They aren’t going anywhere. Bridging these two thoughts together lead me to the conclusion that as email marketers and a creative industry, we are often set back by business traditions; client processes,

The event space located at one of Facebook’s London offices was pretty cool. They have clearly designed it especially for such events and worked really well as a space. If only there were more like it in London…

Events coming up:
Twitter IAB Upfronts – Bex – 9th October
EIS – Millie, Elliot – 17th October
Figaro – Millie, Elliot – 25th October
The Dotties – 1st November

Know of one we should be at? Let us know in the comments.

Millie Bartlett
Strategist @ Action Rocket