IAB, the national trade association for the digital media and marketing industries, announced that it is expanding its membership to include brand leaders in order to add critical perspective and insight as IAB works to drive industry growth. By adding brand executives, IAB will now represent the full spectrum of companies from across the digital media and marketing landscape.

“Brand leaders will now join executives from publishers, platforms, data and technology companies who serve on our Board of Directors,” said Randall Rothenberg, CEO of IAB. “I am excited to welcome this key group of innovators who are redefining how brands engage with their customers to join our efforts to grow the interactive media and marketing industry. We look forward to working and learning together inside the IAB.”

According to a release, the decision to include brands “follows a year of efforts engaging with brands culminating in an IAB study on how direct-to-consumer brands are changing the way that companies connect with consumers. During this process, it became clear to IAB leadership that brand leaders represent an important voice which is needed at the table when considering industry priorities and planning strategically for the future.

“As consumers move increasingly towards social driven, omnichannel media consumption and mobile e-commerce, brands either are now firmly ensconced in the digital media and marketing ecosystem or need to be. To reach their customers, marketers must strategically navigate digital media and social media platforms, e-commerce as well as unlock the full potential of their consumer data. Successful brands are using strategies such as bringing programmatic advertising in-house, deploying innovative marketing technologies, and ensuring that their
staffs are trained in the most up-to-date digital marketing approaches.

“Jesse Horwitz, Co-Founder and Co-CEO of the direct-to-consumer contact lens company Hubble, will be the first brand leader to join the board—providing insight from a brand’s perspective on what IAB needs to focus on to improve the digital media and marketing supply chain to unlock more value for brands.

“Brand executives will now hold leadership positions in the IAB’s Mobile Marketing, Digital Video, and Data Centers of Excellence, helping to develop technical standards and best practices, drive research and thought leadership as well as work with peers and industry experts on critical areas such as programmatic in-sourcing, data quality and transparency, measurement, video and more.

“Expanding IAB’s membership to add brand executives to their existing cohort of leaders from digital, media, advertising and creative companies will give IAB full visibility of the entire digital marketing ecosystem. This new policy represents a major change for the trade association and reflects the group’s leadership in providing vital insights and guidance on navigating what it calls “the direct brand economy.” The organization became an authority on the direct-to-consumer movement last February at the 2018 IAB Annual Leadership Meeting, when IAB CEO, Randall Rothenberg introduced the groundbreaking “The Rise of the 21st Century Brand Economy” study and the “IAB 250” list of direct brands worth watching, a milestone that was followed by a multitude of research projects and initiatives, including the first-ever IAB Direct Brand Summit this past October.”

For information about becoming a member, visit iab.com/members.

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