Industry in Sessions – Notes from On-the-Ground

As we settle into the back-to-school season, our industry is also in deep learning mode. Two rising media stars are competing for centre stage in every discussion – both present an enormous amount of untapped potential for the Canadian digital media market. They are CTV and Retail Media. 

Packaging Up Retail Media

IAB held its evolved commerce event “Connected Commerce” in New York this week, attracting over 600 attendees from all stakeholder groups to discuss this exciting channel of growth. An impressive line-up of speakers provided thoughtful insights into the current state of Retail Media and the roadmap ahead both strategically and technically.  

Noting the tremendous growth spurt of Retail Media Networks, the excitement felt in the room was reminiscent of the digital start up energy that permeated conferences at the start of the digital boom. Heady discussions around issues like standard formats, access to streamlined reporting and transparency from the networks were all on the agenda. The benefit of experience is on the industry’s side as IAB released two major outputs widely supported by the largest retailers and brands in North America that will help scale this area of digital advertising and provide advertisers with key requirements to feel comfortable with their investments.

Retail Media 2023: Operational Strategies to Meet the Growth Potential 

This comprehensive study was created in partnership with BWG Strategy and surveyed 200 RMN ad buyers at brands and agencies, conducted over 30 interviews with senior decision-makers at retailers, brands, agencies, and intermediaries, including demand side platforms (DSPs), supply side platforms (SSPs), and data providers. 

Topline findings covered in the report include: 

  • Retail Media has become an integral channel by addressing the needs for privacy-compliant personalization and closed-loop measurement 
  • Retail Media ad spend is posting solid growth, representing significant share of total ad spend, while benefitting from reallocated funds. 
  • Challenges to Retail Media growth are ecosystem complexity, knowledge gaps, and measurement 
  • Solutions are now being used to overcome some ecosystem challenges, while the needs are clear to solve for the rest. 

IAB/MRC Retail Media Measurement Guidelines 

IAB and the Media Rating Council (MRC) have been working together to establish measurement guidelines through cross-industry collaboration. The guidelines are out for public commentary and our Retail Media Committee members will have an opportunity to review and contribute their feedback ahead of the deadline of October 13th. 

IAB Canada is looking forward to our upcoming Retail Media – Powering Purchase event in Toronto on October 3rd to get on-the-ground perspective on the Canadian landscape.