The Battle for ATTENTION: Will AI Save The Advertising Industry in a Privacy-Driven Economy?

Advertising Week NY: Unlocking the Power of Attention Metrics & Sales Outcomes in Advertising

By SCUBA Insights

In a rapidly evolving advertising landscape, staying ahead of the curve is vital. The industry's capacity for change and adaptation is more important than ever, as emphasized by Brian Mandelbaum, Co-founder, and CEO of Attain. "Our industry is dynamic and ever-changing, and to succeed, we need to adapt to new technologies and data-driven strategies." 


Advertising Week New York discussions provided insights into the emerging trends and innovative solutions that are transforming the advertising landscape. Among these discussions, one session, in particular, highlighted the powerful combination of attention metrics and sales outcomes in advertising.


The enlightening discussion at this year’s Advertising Week New York, titled "Unlocking the Power of Attention Metrics and Sales Outcomes," was moderated by Mandelbaum, with Lora Parker, SVP of Media at PNG and Daniel Slotwiner, SVP of Attention at DoubleVerify serving as panelists. 

The Devaluation of Cookies and the Privacy Revolution

The conversation naturally led to the devaluation of cookies and the privacy concerns that have revolutionized the digital advertising industry. This monumental shift has raised important questions about data collection and targeting. As Daniel Slotwiner mentioned, "We talk a lot about the deprecation of cookies and the kind of importance and elevation of privacy as a concern in the industry." These factors have played a significant role in motivating the industry's need to improve measurement in new contexts and provide advertisers with tools that respect privacy and offer accurate performance insights.

Why Attention Metrics Now?

The discussion also addressed a fundamental question: Why has it taken the advertising industry so long to recognize the importance of attention metrics? Daniel Slotwiner explained, "Our industry is often slow to get to things, but in the case of attention, it is something we've been talking about for a long time." However, several factors, such as the devaluation of cookies and the heightened focus on privacy, have converged to make attention metrics a necessity in the present advertising landscape. Brands and agencies are now seeking to balance their data-driven strategies with privacy concerns, and attention metrics provide a valuable solution.

Evolving Measurement Needs at Agencies

Laura Parker, VP of Media at PMG, offered her perspective on how agencies and brands are adapting to the changing landscape. She emphasized, "PMG inherently believes that data drives outcomes and that data has to be clean and structured." To meet the evolving measurement needs of the industry, PMG has heavily invested in its own technology stack and hired data engineers and data scientists to tell a more advanced measurement story. This approach aligns with the industry's transition from legacy measurement models to more advanced and accurate data analysis techniques.

Incrementality and Performance Measurement

A central theme in the discussion was the significance of incrementality, particularly in the context of retail media networks. Marketers are increasingly optimizing their media budgets and strategies, and the ability to understand what genuinely drives incrementality is crucial. As Daniel Slotwiner pointed out, attention metrics and sales outcomes offer vital data to help brands make data-driven decisions and optimize their ad campaigns. Laura Parker added, "It's not just about sales but also about understanding the consumer's journey from awareness to the final purchase."

The Future of Advertising: What Lies Ahead?

In the ever-evolving advertising landscape, the future holds new challenges and opportunities. As Brian Mandelbaum succinctly states, "Our industry is dynamic and ever-changing." The conversation is expected to shift toward demonstrating the impact of advertising on sales and incrementality, addressing some of the core challenges arising from the devaluation of cookies and privacy concerns. The evolving advertising landscape, anchored in the power of attention metrics and the accountability of sales outcomes, will continue to shape the industry's future.


As the advertising world adapts to a new era of privacy and data-driven strategies, it will be the brands and agencies that harness the potential of attention metrics and sales outcomes that stand out and succeed. The dynamic and ever-changing nature of the industry ensures that these conversations will continue to influence the path forward, with a renewed focus on the metrics that truly matter.


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