Facebook IAB Digital Upfronts 2020

A lot has changed in 2020, and while the fundamental rules of digital marketing haven’t changed, its emerging trends have grown exponentially, as we found out when we attended the IAB virtual Facebook Upfronts 2020 last week. Here are our key takeaways:

Digital Education

The ongoing global pandemic has driven a mass digital education for the UK with new skills being acquired across digital platforms from the functional online grocery shop to businesses selling via messaging apps and consumers turning to digital and on-demand services for their entertainment and exercise. Consumers have adapted, and businesses have pivoted to embrace digital platforms more than ever. In fact, 3.1bn people have used Facebook’s apps and services this year so far, and Shopify reported seeing Black Friday levels of sales activity every day in Q2. Digital is now the new normal.

Discovery Commerce

One of the most important digital trends to come out of 2020 is the growth of Discovery Commerce. Enabled by artificial intelligence and sophisticated machine learning, this small but significant change sees a move away from people finding products to products finding people. 

It’s a step away from providing disruptive content towards generating strategic creative experiences. By leveraging your consumer signal data and utilising machine learning, we can now predict what consumers want, and when to serve them relevant advertising.

Brands of the Future

Consumers have increasingly high expectations of how brands should contribute to solving world problems from tackling a lack of diversity to environmental sustainability. Having a voice, a point of view and an authentic emotional connection is what will position brands apart especially in the eyes of Gen Z and Gen Alpha. It’s no longer a nice-to-have part of your brand story; it’s a must-have.