Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Aww, look at @d:tech, all grown up!

It's been a long time since I went to @d:tech, and the last time I attended, it was probably one of the ultra-geeky ones in San Francisco, so I guess I went to it today in New York to see, to an extent, whether it was grown-up. Being the person who covered interactive for mainstream trades like Adweek and Ad Age, going to @d:tech was always like entering parallel universe. While the mainstream industry was still taking about reach and frequency, over at @d:tech the talk was of ad serving technologies and search engine optimization--the advertising almost seemed incidental to the technology. Well, @d:tech has grown up--at least in terms of the speakers it attracts. A running joke, in fact, in the opening keynote with Universal McCann chief Nick Bierne, was that Bierne had asked to speak at the conference in 1999 and been rejected. Also speaking today: Ted McConnell, director of interactive innovations at Procter & Gamble; Curt Hecht, chief digital officer of GM Planworks; Stuart Elliott (I dunno, does he really need introduction); Carla Hendra, of Ogilvy; Nielsen's Susan Whiting and NBC Universal's Beth Comstock. What I'm not as convinced of--from scanning nametags in the packed hallways, hotel lobby (see picture), and exhibit halls (which themselves overflowed into the hallways), was how many mainstream ad types are there. I'll report back more on @d:tech tomorrow.

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