7 sessions you mustn’t miss at Ad Week Europe this year

Of the more than 200 events in London, these are seven well worth making time for

April 14, 2016

Advertising Week Europe, which kicks off in London on Monday April 18th, will feature a blizzard of more than 200 events, taking place across more than six venues, in just four days. It’s one of the most exciting and rewarding events in the marketing calendar – but it’s also one of the all-time great scheduling challenges. I like to plan my week around sessions that have something unique to say about the big issues – or which bring together so much expertise that they offer a definitive view. Here are seven I’ll definitely be making time for. I recommend that you do too:

Ad Blocking: A New Deal or a Modern Day Protection Racket?

The Guardian Stage, Monday 18th 9.15 AM

Why not kick off Ad Week Europe with the biggest issue in advertising today? There are several sessions tackling ad blocking during the week, but this stands out to me as the one to get under the skin of the subject. It could be the provocative title, or the fact that this panel lines up publishers, ad blockers, media agencies and clients to face off against one another. Things could get spicy.

A Conversation with Sir Martin Sorrell

ITV Stage, Monday 18th 5:00 PM

The WPP Chief Executive’s sessions are always an Ad Week Europe must-see. Sir Martin won’t hold back on the state of the industry or the challenges ahead, and listening in on his thinking taps you straight into the key issues for the week ahead.

The B2B Forum

Getty Images Stage, Tuesday 19th from 9:00 AM

Invitation only

We’re proud to be hosting the LinkedIn B2B Forum for the second consecutive year. It’s the event that puts B2B marketing at the heart of Ad Week Europe, with a morning of panel discussions, research presentations and advertiser testimonials that will explore what it takes to deliver creative and effective B2B marketing in 2016. We’ll be looking at strategies for content marketing to professionals, putting B2B in touch with emotion, building competitively customer-centric businesses and more. I’m excited to be introducing the event – and if your name’s on the list it will be great to see you there.

The Future of Programmatic Debate

The Guardian Stage, Tuesday 19th 3:00 PM

Of all the sessions touching on the pros and cons of Programmatic, this is my pick: it sidesteps the ‘is it really a good thing’ question and throws the debate forward to ask where Programmatic is going next, and what brands should be demanding of it. 

Real Time Story Tellers

Getty Images Stage, Wednesday April 20th 2:45 PM

We hear a lot about the art of storytelling – but how does that art apply in a world of fragmented media and momentary attention spans, when real-time relevance is essential? LinkedIn’s Director of Global Marketing Keith Richey is one of the panelists for what promises to be a fascinating discussion.

Trumping social

The Guardian Stage, Thursday April 21st, 1.30 PM

Whether you believe that Donald Trump is the embodiment of great social media marketing or not, it’s hard to resist popping into this session to hear the arguments either way. It’s hosted by the agency Gravity Road and the Guardian, and it promises a line-up of writers and comedians to talk frankly about “the coming age of Trump”. They’ve certainly got plenty of provocative material to work with.

Story TIME

The Guardian Stage, Thursday April 21st, 2:15 PM

The story of Refugees United is an inspiring one. It shows how the imaginative use of technology, coupled with a sense of purpose, can make a huge difference to people’s lives. With little more than access to a low-cost mobile phone, the non-profit organisation enables refugees to search, connect and communicate with missing family, and has helped more than 400,000 people so far. Founder Chris Mikkelsen is at Ad Week Europe to explain how he and his brother made this powerful idea happen.

This blog was first published on The Wall.