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How brilliant was this year’s show? The atmospheric Docklands venue of Tobacco Wharf crackled with dynamism as some of the world’s most exciting brands took centre stage.

Digital transformation, multichannel marketing and co-creation campaigns were the words on everyone’s lips. Amid the exotic aromas wafting from food stands, there was exhilarating entertainment from promotional and experiential companies, including the Guinness World of Records.

As event sponsors, we were lucky enough to create a unique exhibition stand, combining the organiser’s furniture with our own bespoke architecture. Our digital driving game, an imaginary journey around an event planner’s desk, evoked loads of interest and a competitive spirit amongst avid gamers.


Our Stef and Sarah-Jane representing Nimlok

Seminars were packed with audiences hungry to hear about the latest digital marketing and content strategies. We were among them and, having digested various speakers’ wisdom, we felt three key areas emerged.

1. Measuring media attribution

One, hosted by the company Datalicious, asked: How Can We Optimise Marketing Effectiveness When We Don’t Even Know What Marketing is Effective? ”

Their research may have made some marketers wriggle a little uncomfortably in their seats …

For while it was recognised that in today’s multi-channel and cross-device world, marketers have gained increased awareness of media attribution, there’s still some way to go.

The company’s findings, taken from a survey of more than 400 client-side and agency marketers based in the Asia Pacific region, identified that many lacked knowledge in the area of media attribution, including how to action the insights gained from first-click and last-attribution models.

Wastage in media spend has a multiplying effect on marketing performance – not only is it a measure of inefficiency, but also a grave representation of missed opportunities.

Without a true understanding of media performance across different channels, it’s impossible to allocate media spend effectively.

Those responsible for assigning marketing budgets must have left the seminar with that clear message ringing in their ears.

2. Connecting with customers emotionally

Every marketer is aware of the need to create socially-engaging content – how best to do it is another matter …

Eager for enlightenment, many headed to the seminar entitled “Leveraging the Power of Storytelling in B2B to Connect Your Brand to Customers and Drive ROI “.

Global electronics giants Philips spoke of how they’d reached out to their employees in 160 countries, seeking ‘authentic stories’ about how the brand improves lives.

Their Living Lab innovation helps local communities, while improving public perception of its work in sustainability and health care. One big win-win.

Lord Sugar chipped in with his view that time, money and effort should only be spent on the promotion of products. Eva Barrett, Philips’ Global Head of Brand Marketing Communications, wasn’t having any of that.

‘I disagree with Sugar completely,’ she countered. ‘We all have infinite choices on who to buy from these days. The brands who stand out are those who don’t just try to sell products, but have a purpose and stand for something.’

Strong minds, clashing opinions, upending the status quo …no wonder this was the most successful Festival of Marketing yet.

3.We’re in it together

Collaborative marketing company trnd’s seminar Marketing with your customers, not at them was delivered by joint managing directors Paul Mitchell and Rebekah Mackay Miller.

Their approach is simple – today’s consumers want to do more than just buy and consume products. They want actively to support their favourite brands in their marketing efforts. By giving consumers the power to do so, they’ll generate mass awareness, drive footfall and sales, and lead an army of dedicated co-marketers.

Customers are our biggest resource, so why not activate and encourage them to do more than just buy products from us? Work with them to build the brands and products of the future.

Social media has made marketers of us all. Like, share and retweet THAT!

Other highlights were seminars on Experiential and Physical Marketing, Measuring the Value of Content, Exploring the Power of Great Stories and Disrupting Influencers… the list goes on.

Visitors to the show left buzzing with new insights, contacts and success stories. Marketers often get so wrapped up in their brands, they lose sight of fresh ways of thinking.

The Festival of Marketing is the perfect comfort-zone buster and we, for one, can’t wait to sign up again next year.


One of our bespoke stands for Taxcalc

Thinking of decking out your stand for next year? Take a look at our bespoke exhibition stands to make you stand out from the crowd.

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