Dmexco in Cologne for the first time, a really busy show with a broad German / EU / international audience. Across a series of exhibition halls it gave a very good state of the nation view on the digital marketing industry: essentially data, data and more data… platforms and tools to commoditise, personalise and target efficient communications.
There were some more immersive / experiential products in evidence but in truth many felt a bit “look at my innovation” rather than genuine forward steps.
And – Brexit.
Literally every conversation had a Brexit section, with a tone mainly of confusion, uncertainty and incredulity. All were aware that the detailed questions they want answered are at present unanswerable, and as a result the UK, despite having a digital advertising market more than double the German (#2 in EU), looks a less compelling proposition for expansion until there is some clarity.
Unfortunately it is not just the commercial uncertainty, echoed in a conversation with a major London VFX firm is the cultural damage – harder to quantify, the more emotional impacts of an apparently less open nation will be much longer lasting. And were entirely avoidable.