Media Buying Briefing: From Cannes Lions, wrestling with measurement, fraud and the ‘multiverse’

The 2022 Cannes Lions Pageant of Creativity could seem like a boozy celebration of the perfect inventive work performed in promoting, however to most of the hundreds of attendees this 12 months, it’s much more about discussing the alternatives and travails of the media enterprise. And there’s loads to debate.

However ask 10 media patrons their most essential points, and also you’ll get 11 totally different solutions. The one constant theme expressed: happiness at with the ability to get collectively once more in particular person to share concepts, visions, offers and frustrations. 

Based mostly on conversations I had with media patrons and company CEOs over the course of Cannes Lions, listed here are my takeaways:

Information & measurement

Even at a competition about creativity, measurement points bubbled to the floor, with patrons complaining concerning the confusion that hovers over the tv market. They largely scoffed at NBC Common’s latest assertion that it had bought as much as 40 p.c of its upfront stock on non-Nielsen currencies. “That’s absolute bullshit,” declared one head of funding who, naturally, declined to talk on the report. 

Even when it’s true — and whether it is, it ought to make the incumbent Nielsen very nervous — Nielsen nonetheless retains just a few playing cards of worth that can doubtless hold it within the driver’s seat. One analysis government who beforehand labored at Nielsen defined that its rolling collection of contracts with the TV networks prevents it from ever being overly uncovered to dropping an excessive amount of enterprise in any 12 months. The exec additionally stated incumbency could be powerfully wielded — as long as Nielsen really makes substantive modifications with its proposed Nielsen One resolution.

The looming menace of privateness rules by legislators has some executives virtually begging entrepreneurs to assist clarify why an excessive amount of regulation might damage the business. Entrepreneurs “are lacking proper now, they usually’re both saying their authorized groups are taking good care of it, or they’re too scared to step onstage,” Arun Kumar, IPG’s chief information and advertising know-how officer, instructed me for a podcast episode. “I don’t know what it’s. However there’s an abdication, and I don’t assume there’s a real appreciation of how advertising is perceived in these locations.”


Although there’s not a nook of the media shopping for enterprise that doesn’t contain a point of programmatic shopping for, the automated shopping for possibility continues to be haunted by accusations of power fraud and lack of transparency. 

“It’s whack-a-mole, it’s all the time whack-a-mole, proper?” stated Joanna O’Connell, vp and principal analyst at Forrester Analysis throughout a separate podcast episode. “Each new setting turns into the following setting the place it’s important to face these sorts of challenges. And albeit, I believe the perfect antidote is fixed vigilance.”

What stays to be seen is that if a deep recession really helps programmatic distributors generate extra gross sales by way of their platforms — but additionally be pressured to exhibit extra transparency within the course of by companies who want to indicate shoppers their funding hasn’t been wasted.

Talking of the recession, although not all media company executives I spoke with believed the inflationary setting will change into a full-fledged recession, most of them are fearful. The president of 1 unbiased media company stated his shoppers have already began to chop again spending for the second half of 2022.


There was much more dialogue of Web3 and the metaverse than the nascent know-how deserves, agreed most individuals I spoke with. “I’m so bored with listening to about this,” moaned one media company CEO. “It’s simply not there but. And many of the companies that say they’ve figured something out are bullshitting you.” 

Doug Rozen, CEO of Dentsu Americas, talking on a panel hosted by consideration ad-tech agency Infillion, went as far as to refuse to make use of the phrase metaverse. He stated he desires the business to undertake the broader time period “multiverse,” which encapsulates all of the non-IRL worlds shoppers can inhabit at present. Confused, I identified that multiverse is a Marvel Cinematic Universe time period — to which he supplied his reasoning: “We are able to’t let one firm personal a time period for one thing that goes far past one firm.” He declined to call stated firm, however the viewers all knew what he meant.


Whereas Greenpeace protested peacefully but additionally disruptively outdoors the Palais (they blocked the already horrible site visitors alongside the Croisette and introduced in a ladder fireplace truck to be able to scale the aspect of the constructing), many companies talked of transferring the business towards carbon-neutral media investments. All of the company holding firms, together with Unilever and main business associations, declared their participation in rolling out Advert Web Zero, a carbon-neutral initiative began within the U.Ok. 

The issue is, a lot of the speak stays obscure, with little element on how such investments might be verified as carbon-neutral. I applaud the truth that the business is pondering this fashion, however given the oppressive warmth and frequent bouts of rain in the course of the Lions, maybe the urgency wants to extend much more.

Colour by numbers

As if to strengthen the surge of curiosity in e-commerce, HubSpot’s 2022 Instagram Shopping Report discovered that 94 p.c of entrepreneurs plan to extend or keep their funding for the remainder of 2022. HubSpot spoke with 500 entrepreneurs concerning the Meta-owned social web site. Different findings embody: 59 p.c stated that launching a services or products completely on Instagram is best than wherever else.

Takeoff & touchdown

  • TelevisaUnivision stated it can use VideoAmp’s different foreign money as a part of its information graph to trace Hispanic TV utilization, with the choice foreign money supplier claiming a extreme undercounting of Latino viewers. 
  • Horizon Media stated it’s testing Comscore’s native TV measurement service for the 2023 planning and shopping for season. The unbiased media company already introduced it plans to decide to transacting as much as 15 p.c of its 2022 upfront offers on different currencies.  
  • Netflix co-CEO Ted Sarandos acknowledged that the streamer is in talks with a number of potential companions to assist it get its lower-cost, ad-supported model up and operating this fall. Reported attainable companions embody: Google, Roku and Comcast. 

Direct quote

“We’re singularly centered on supporting our individuals by way of this transition. Whereas we can’t predict how abortion entry will evolve within the coming months, and even years, Stagwell believes workers ought to have entry to glorious well being care, no matter their location. We’re taking quick steps that can develop our community journey advantages to present workers entry to the closest accredited reproductive healthcare supplier in a legally permissible means. We hope this journey profit will present workers positioned in states which have carried out new restrictions on reproductive rights with entry to care.”  

—Mark Penn, chairman/CEO of holding firm Stagwell, in response to the Supreme Courtroom’s overturning of Roe v. Wade.

Pace studying

  • Digiday senior advertising reporter Kimeko McCoy expertly coated Cannes Lions on the bottom, together with this critique of the necessity for extra substance to the competition.
  • Although he wasn’t even there, Digiday senior information Seb Joseph coated Cannes Lions successfully as nicely — try this tackle publishers‘ efforts to be seen and heard. And skim his tackle ad-tech’s counting on the Croisette. 
  • Joseph and senior ad-tech reporter Ronan Shields additionally broke the information of Amazon’s settlement to include The Commerce Desk’s Unified ID2.0 into its Amazon Internet Providers.


Media Buying Briefing: From Cannes Lions, wrestling with measurement, fraud and the ‘multiverse’

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