The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) unveiled an expanded schedule for its third annual Digital Content NewFronts marketplace yesterday, extending the previously week-long event to nine days of presentations from April 28 to May 8.
The extra time makes room for a host of new participants, including BuzzFeed, National Geographic, Maker Studios and Vice Media. They will be joining NewFronts co-founders AOL, DigitasLBi, Google/YouTube, Hulu, Microsoft, Yahoo and a dozen or so other top digital players in presenting programming previews for advertisers at various locations in New York City. Each participant will make their presentation at an independent, invitation-only event.
The criteria for admission is the same as last year – invitees must be companies that both create and distribute original digital video content at a scale that is attractive to advertisers – but this year the selection process has changed.
“We had a lot of outreach from buyers wanting to get even more involved in the process from the get-go,” says Julie Van Ullen, VP of member services for IAB, who for the second year in a row is serving as managing partner for the NewFronts, supervising logistics and communications. “So we created a NewFronts Advisory Board that includes people from Carat, Universal McCann, Havas, JP Morgan Chase, Group M and many others who helped us.”
The IAB surveyed NewFronts attendees after last year’s event and found that 78% of buyers picked up a new advertising opportunity and two out of three planned to increase their cross-platform buys.
Under the guidance of the advisory board, the IAB culls a list of top original video content creator/distributors from both the comScore and Nielsen Top 100 rankings to create a survey that is sent to a host of buyers, agencies and advertisers who vote on who they would like to see at the NewFronts. A shortlist is compiled from the results, then the advisory board compiles a final list of invitees.
Of course, just because a company is invited, that doesn’t mean it will participate. For instance, Discovery Communications chooses to integrate its digital programming into its TV upfront presentation.
But a long list of others will be at NewFronts, including Condé Nast Entertainment, Crackle at Sony Pictures Television, the Dow Jones Company/Wall Street Journal, Glam Media/Project M, National Geographic, The New York Times, POPSUGAR, Scripps Networks, Time Inc., Time Warner Cable and VEVO. More participants will be announced in the coming weeks.
Ullen says that approximately 5,000 people attended last year’s NewFronts events, and she expects that number to grow this year with the expanded schedule. She adds that IAB surveyed NewFronts attendees after last year’s event and found that 78% of buyers picked up a new advertising opportunity and two out of three planned to increase their cross-platform buys.
“With statistics like that coming out of the first year IAB oversaw the NewFronts, we expect this year to be a smashing success,” Ullen says.