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Josephine Buys on bookmarking SA's digital summit

IAB SA CEO, Josephine Buys talks us through the IAB's involvement in the third Digital Summit and ninth Bookmark Awards, both taking place on Thursday, 16 March. She elaborates on the importance of bringing this level of thought leadership, celebration and collaboration to SA's digital community.

Asked what she’s personally most looking forward to from this year’s Summit and Awards, Buys says:

Seeing the cream of SA’s digirati at our once a year gathering, to share extraordinary content, optimistic outlooks, and of course to celebrate or commiserate with the tallest poppies in our industry the night before the biggest babalas of the year!
Buys adds that the IAB Digital Summit is the IAB's annual showcase that gathers leading industry professionals, decision-makers and thought leaders under one roof to exchange and share insights about the reinvention of media, platforms, creative and business models.

Summit freebies: App engagement and rising stars' attendance

“This event allows for digital dialogue on both a local and global scale, with over 10 local luminaries standing shoulder to shoulder with three illustrious international speakers. While we are delighted that the event attracts C-suite executives and middle managers, we recognise how crucial it is to give access to tomorrow’s talent, so this year we have reserved 50 complimentary tickets for the rising stars of the digital industry to join us, free of charge, so that they too can get exposed to many aspects of digital media and marketing,” adds Buys.

They’re excited to give them this opportunity to learn, to network and to meet current and future peers and possibly even mentors, as many of the IAB’s members are passionate about the future of the industry and ready, willing and able to support young, upcoming talent.

Another exciting change this year is the inclusion of Blippar augmented reality throughout the event, courtesy of innovation hub C2C Labs, a certified Blippar partner in SA. “Providing new and exciting ways to drive deeper engagement, inspire and deepen brand conversations, delegates can download the free Blippar app ahead of the event to engage with our event partners, access Summit content and enjoy other fun-filled experiences on the day,” explains Buys.

More than this, IAB’s partnership with digital agency network Accenture Interactive ups the stakes for this third annual IAB Digital Summit as Accenture Interactive has already disrupted the digital landscape with its diverse offering of service and experience design, marketing, content and commerce capabilities.

Truly driving digital dialogue

“Combined with the depth of IAB’s knowledge and breadth of our members' influence in digital, this partnership is set to drive digital dialogue like never before”, says Buys, with Accenture Interactive’s investment and commitment to the Diamond partnership meaning Summit ticket prices remain the same as last year and the event can be scaled to reach up to 650 people, with messages like:

“Add to that their speaker Didier Uljasz' keynote on the customer genome and how it offers insight into ways in which to channel detailed customer data into real impact and we are thrilled that this partnership elevates the Summit to a greater level than ever before,” she clarifies. The rest of the diverse speaker lineup will also focus on this year’s Summit theme of how the power of digital has shifted to the hands of an increasingly on-demand consumer, reshaping relationships among platforms, publishers and advertising.

Consumers have never had more control! Their eyeballs, their swipes and their expectations are leading the charge for seamlessly integrated, aesthetically pleasing, value added content and brand experiences. The ability of our industry to deliver resonant storytelling, powered by meaningful data, across all platforms and screens has never been more important!
The programme will thus uncover opportunities and pitfalls that digital media and marketers face, in light of the most recent innovations, trends, strategies, and solutions in digital. Our speakers will be covering the latest and imminent trends with the hottest topics including the disruption of the content marketing space, the future of digitised measurement, gamification, how mobile and streaming are set to change the way brands remain relevant in the digital world, and how Africa is becoming a cutting edge market for the digital revolution. The list goes on with 15 laser point shots of digital awe in 6.5 hours.

Switching focus to the Bookmark Awards then, Buys explains that the ninth annual Bookmark Awards honours individuals, agencies, publishers and brands that have produced creative, innovative, technical excellence and achieved tangible results in digital media and marketing. The Bookmarks recognises the powerful impact interactive has on the overall marketing mix and sets the benchmark for leading edge innovation in digital. The award winning work inspires and educates the industry about the power to build brands through creative and high impact digital executions that deliver measurable results.

New categories for #Bookmarks2017!

Innovative use of mobile mediaMobile advertising that pushes the boundaries beyond the illegible banner ad.
Online video seriesNon-branded online video content.
Chat, messaging and dark socialUse of chat, chat bots and messaging platforms (dark social) to achieve a marketing or communication result.
Publisher appsNews or feature publishing apps intended to distribute information to a mass audience for non-brand purposes.
Online photographyUse of online photo by a publisher for news or editorial purposes.
Online news videosUse of online video by a publisher for news or editorial purposes.
Live event coverageOnline coverage by a publication of an event - winners will demonstrate excellence in live reporting and content production.
Streaming servicesDedicated internet streaming service (video or audio).
Best CTOIndividual in a brand who most supports, encourages and succeeds using digital channels.
Best contribution to transformation in the digital industryOrganisation who has made the most convincing contribution to growing diversity in the digital industry in line with overall goals for an integrated South Africa. This could be through any meaningful mechanism ranging from ownership to participation.
Pixel for purposeAwarded to a piece of work (site, app, publication or any other digital piece) that made a significant positive social impact. The winner will have conclusively proven that the idea worked.

This year saw a record number of entries, with judging panels broken down into marketers, builders, publishers, innovators and engineers, gamers and special honours. Each panel consists of digital luminaries and specific category specialists for the likes of search, video and social media.

Judges have mentioned that the standard is very high, with some of the best work ever seen. There were two rounds of judging this year, with the first round done remotely with an ‘in/out’ vote based on reviewing the one-pager and then voting accordingly.

Round two has the judges in Cape Town and Johannesburg view the actual case studies and videos and voting using VC facilities based on general criteria of creativity/innovation, technical accomplishment and results achieved as well as craft criteria, based on the quality of work produced and technical difficulty or accomplishment in doing so. The scoring is all done confidentially and not discussed or shared, with the entry system algorithm ignoring the highest and lowest score and averaging out the rest to produce a percentage per entry. These are broken down as follows:

  • 70% + = Gold
  • 60%-69% = Silver
  • 50%-59% = Bronze

t's anyone's guess who will come out tops!

Click here for a recap on all of this year’s Bookmark Awards finalists, here for what to expect from the IAB Digital Summit and keep an eye on our IAB Digital Summit and Bookmark Awards special section for all the latest updates!

About Leigh Andrews

Leigh Andrews AKA the #MilkshakeQueen, is former Editor-in-Chief: Marketing & Media at Bizcommunity.com, with a passion for issues of diversity, inclusion and equality, and of course, gourmet food and drinks! She can be reached on Twitter at @Leigh_Andrews.

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