IAB Seminar- Finding a friend in a digital brand

Last week I attended the IAB seminar ‘finding a friend in a digital brand’ along with some of the affilinet team. The event focused on a panel of six speakers, who gave their vision of how brands should behave towards consumers. For me there were some key takeaway points, which I have detailed below:

Consumer experience

Consumer experience should be the core of every single marketing strategy. This is especially true in the digital space where the users are constantly over stimulated by brands approaching them. Whether it’s through display, retargeting, videos, content or native advertising, brands should pay particular attention at how and when they address their users.

Moving away from obtrusive advertising

It can sound obvious, but marketers may sometimes be advised to put themselves in their consumers’ shoes to determine their adverting frequency, messages and target audience. As users we easily get annoyed with brands that spam and interrupt our browsing with irrelevant ads, so make sure you avoid this situation by utilising your data and targeting consumers with relevant ads.

Human value

A theme that was mentioned multiple times is the growing demand from consumers for brands to adopt a human attitude. More and more consumers expect the brands to be an entity they can relate to-like a good friend- and tend to disregard the traditional ‘corporate brands’. This also impacts how users want to be perceived: as people and no as consumers. For the brands ‘authenticity’ seems to be the key word going forward! This means grasping the true personality of your brand and naturally implementing it in everything that you do. But more importantly, the true personality of a brand shouldn’t be determined by the marketers’ views, but by how your community relate to this brand, whether it’s your consumers or your own colleagues. A brand exists by the people that make and use it.


After the seminar, to me it looked like successful brands that position themselves as close to their consumers, or should I say their people, are particular playful with their social media and creative with delivering engaging content. But in order to achieve this close relationship with their consumers, they need to ‘let go of their brand’ and let the consumers take over it. This is web 2.0 marketing after all!

Sylvia Leroy

Sylvia is an Account Manager at affilinet and her main responsibility is to ensure sustainable growth across her accounts. This involves identifying growth opportunities as well as building strong affiliate strategy to meet her clients’ objectives.

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