Last year’s dmexco conference foresaw 2016 as the year mobile would surge to new heights of sophistication and engagement, but no one could have predicted the speed of its progression. In the year that has seen Apple launch its iPhone 7 and Pokémon Go explode in popularity, 2016 has surpassed many of last year’s predictions. 

After a blistering advancement in mobile since 2015, what have been the key mobile talking points at this year’s dmexco?


Programmatic advertising offers huge benefits to advertisers, but its rapid rise in use has too often lead to irrelevant or shabby advertising being served to the wrong people at the wrong time. 

Where mobile has the programmatic edge is through tailored content. Nothing destroys a good perception of a brand more than irrelevant advertising. 

Programmatic advertising, used correctly through mobile, is able to serve adverts to specific audiences with an unrivalled accuracy. At this year’s conference, there has been much discussion among advertisers around using customer data to help advertise only to those who would interact with the content, serving adverts that are well received by recipients and promote a higher level of brand recall. 

Mobile hardware

The new iPhone launched just before the event, but was still a hot topic. What is clear throughout the evolution of mobile hardware is that the better the graphics and processing power, the higher the level of consumer engagement. 

Apple has said that the iPhone 7 display is 25% brighter than last year’s model, and a new GPU provides 50% faster graphics. This will result in a more immersive experience for consumers, particularly when it comes to mobile gaming. Coupled with this, the larger storage space for the basic model (32GB versus 16GB) allows more space for gaming apps.

Mobile advertising

As mobile engagement rises, so too does the use of ad blockers, forcing marketers to rethink the way they deliver advertising through mobile. It was a key topic of discussion at dmexco last year and little has changed since. 

The truth is evident; ad blockers are going nowhere, and marketers need to stop pushing against them and instead work to create advertising that removes the desire and need to block adverts. 

Rewarded advertising experiences can strengthen the advertiser-consumer value exchange. We offer formats such as the ‘Buddy Pack’ within our mobile games. The format serves ads at emotional peaks or troughs during gameplay, using in-game, branded messages to reward consumers when they have done well or help them if they’re struggling. If players watch an advert through to completion, they can receive a boost or extra life, for example. It helps to heighten players’ overall experience when gaming, whilst creating a naturally positive relationship between players and the brand advertised. 

Mobile video

A question we kept hearing on the ground was ‘how can brands be more creative with their content?’.  With 2016 being the ‘year of mobile’, it comes as no surprise that one of the resounding answers to this question is through mobile video. 

Brands looking to create engaging content know the power of mobile video to keep consumers viewing branded content again and again. The issue that they face is a lack of transparent reporting from specific platforms. Marketers want to know how many people are viewing video ads through to completion; this is an area that gets murky when you look at Facebook view-through rates that might count a few seconds as a ‘view’. Where is the indication that the content has actually been engaged with, and will be recalled by the viewer? 

Brands want to ensure customers are engaging with mobile video, with high levels of brand recall and interaction. This is yet another string added to mobile’s bow. By using videos that reward the consumer, or lead them through their game experience, one can guarantee brand interaction.

Mobile gaming

Since the early days of Snake, mobile gaming has changed hugely. As consumers become more exposed to advanced handsets and superior graphics, they begin to expect more from their games and even the adverts that appear within them. With so much consumer demand for gaming, attendees at dmexco were keen to explore how in-game advertising could become integral to their digital marketing strategy. As marketers look to new trends and innovative formats to reach consumers, in-game advertising has come to the fore.

With dmexco being such a good indicator of trends for the year ahead, you can rest assured that 2017’s conference will still see mobile as a hot topic, with the latest developments under discussion among brands and agencies eager to engage their consumer audiences.