The media world descended upon Las Vegas for the annual unofficial kick off to our industry’s year. As usual, it was buzzing around the Aria with dozens of panels and big media event spaces. Over the years, CES has morphed into the place to be for a who’s who of industry insiders – couple that with the overall feeling of a giant reunion, and it’s not a bad way to transition from ‘holiday mode’ into ‘back to business at full-speed mode.’ And the BLOCKBOARD team was ready for it all!
A few stand out topics were consistent throughout our conversations during the week. Below are key take-aways from the executive team:
MATT WASSERLAUF, CEO & Co-Founder, BLOCKBOARD: The theme of CES (at least from the Aria) was Retail Media and Amazon and Walmart held court. From Blockboard’s suite HQ at the Aria, we showed marketers how to leverage CTV for their benefit and not the retailers. Blockchain technology on full display that puts the marketer first!
TARUN YADAV, Co-Founder & CTO, BLOCKBOARD: AI was widely present at CES, playing a dual role in solving real-world issues and raising risks. Blockboard stands out by not only mitigating AI risks but also leveraging AI and Blockchain to address problems and enhance transparency.
ROXANNE GEYER, SVP Customer Experience, BLOCKBOARD: AI and Retail Media were absolutely a few of the biggest topics during meetings as well as part of conversations over cocktail. Everyone (brands, agencies, publishers and tech solution providers) is learning how to navigate both – and also trying to figure out which fundamental aspects can be practically applied to advance business, and what is simply a distraction. Another interesting observation was that a few major studio houses were showcasing their upcoming shows. Could CES also become an early buying arena which further diminishes the traditional Upfronts?
JOSH EISINGER, SVP BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT, BLOCKBOARD: Bullish content houses and publishers – that was my biggest takeaway from CES. While there is still much to figure out in terms of fragmentation from the consumer experience as well as a backend operational perspective, there has never been a stronger time for content year round and the publishers are getting much better at understanding their own data to support buyers. That said, it is clear that the need for more direct lines between the advertiser, publisher and consumer are critical for overall success, and it is exciting that we have already started to prove that out with NBCU.