The DigiAds Stage is renowned for shining a light on the latest opportunities from all four corners of the digital advertising ecosystem. At MAD//Fest ‘22 and ‘23 we covered Responsible Media, Privacy, and channels such as CTV and Retail Media. With our relationships with the major stakeholders in retail, DigiAds has naturally become the natural home for Retail Media & Innovation.  

MAD//Fest has, since inception, supported global and local retailers, brands and the platforms that empower them, providing stage, forum, and audience of those who benefit from hearing from the industries thought leaders who have mastered the “dark arts” of retail advertising & innovation in a world where technological change + consumer behaviours way in which we work.  

This year, we heard from Boots, ASOS, Deliveroo, Uber & Merkle giving us an overview of the importance of Retail Media & considerations for brands, retailers, and tech partners. 

Whilst Retail Media & Innovation may be an emerging channel for some, it’s not a new concept at all. For a little over a decade Amazon & eBay have become part of our lives and as consumers you have probably engaged with retail media strategies without even knowing it.   

Putting brand communications and advertising as close to the point of sales makes perfect sense right?  

Why has there been a noticeable shift in focus on Retail Media recently?  

With consumers becoming more aware, and equally unaware of how their data is being captured, catalogued, and monetised through the seemingly endless pipes of AdTech, Brand Loyalty and sharing data with trusted sources has become an increasingly important consideration. 

Advertisers are seeking out more direct partnerships with publishers and brand partners to get as close as possible to supply and the point where “consent” has been given knowingly and not from misleading cookie pop-ups, in exchange for relevant more personalised promotions.   

Where the law & GDPR is concerned there are no grey areas, bad practitioners would lead us to believe there is a form Data Provenance Kevin Bacon Scale at play, this has not gone unnoticed by the European Data Protection Authorities, this can be seen in the escalation of enforcement and fines in recent months.    

Better SPO also offers sustainability benefits to those committed to AdNetZero or other CO2E reducing strategies.  Privacy & Sustainability should be “table stakes” and Retail Media + the networks that are powering them can offer a safer haven where 1st party data is traded amongst trusted partners.  

Cookie deprecation, the pandemic, consumer behaviour all have a part to play in the leap towards Retail Media but what excites me about this channel is the depth and quality of partnerships that I have seen between brands and retailers.  

Innovation and Development 

The value of your 1st party data is based on a variety of factors, therefore in an increasingly competitive marketplace, retailers will be driven to create better more engaging shopping experiences, both online and in store to bolster this tradeable commodity.  I for one, look forward to Retail Media pushing innovation from creative execution and digital advancements as retailers’ step-up efforts to attract advertising revenues.  And there’s plenty of it to go around apparently.  

In a recent article from Reuters, that predicts Retail Media ad revenues to surpass TV by 2028, GroupM said it expects advertising revenue from retail media channels will grow 9.9% to reach $125.7 billion in 202, making up 15.4% of total ad revenues.  

Brands continue to develop Multi/Omnichannel strategies that retail media helps support and any forward motion that supports the growth of our industry should be held high, as my LinkedIn feed switches from CTV announcements to retail media, mixing the longevity with innovation it’s clear that there is a lot to learn.  DigiAds will become your one-stop-shop for all things Retai Media & Innovation providing you access to all the information that you will need to master this channel.  

If you are an RM veteran, novice or newbie and want to get involved, I would love to hear from you at