Industry ‘Team GB’ goes virtual for global exports push

team gb dmaThe UK advertising and marketing export initiative – backed by the DMA, the IPA and the Advertising Association – is launching its first global push with a virtual “Summer Showcase” designed to boost business opportunities in key markets across the world.

Developed by UK Advertising Export Group members, and funded by the Government, the showcase will be rolled out at online industry events including Createch at the CogX show and the Shanghai International Advertising Festival.

Planned activities, developed in consultation with UKAEG member and events specialist, Brandfuel, include virtual exhibition booths, roundtables, discussions, keynotes, best practice presentations and socials, all geared to connect UK companies with international buyers of advertising and marketing services.

The Export Group, which was launched in March,  features close to 50 members drawn from across the UK’s advertising and marketing services industries. It is supported through the industry’s partnership with the Department for International Trade (DIT), which is backing the initiative with funding and support for the UK’s creative industries as they deal with the challenges brought about by Covid-19.

At CogX, the group will share the stage with the BBC’s new director-general Tim Davie, and Health Secretary Matt Hancock. All members will also feature in the Createch mission in a virtual exhibition booth, while MBA, Across the Pond, VCCP, Guinness World Records, FX Digital, Nexus, Happy Finish, Thomas Thomas Films, Crowd and Digital Detox all on stage during the event.

The group is also planning a series of up to 15 virtual events from mid-June to September with likely tie-ins with Lions Live, the virtual festival that is replacing Cannes Lions this year. This includes knowledge-sharing sessions and networking with members and Cannes Lions delegations from Japan, South Korea, Germany, the US and Australia. Key sessions are being developed around Industry Recovery Post Covid-19, Trust in Advertising, Inclusion, Climate, Talent and more.

The second mission in July will see companies participate online in the Shanghai Advertising Festival (SHIAF), where the UK group is working closely with the events team and the DIT’s China office to achieve maximum profile for UK advertising. Participating companies include 360exec, Across the Pond, Adam & Eve DDB, Agency Inc, Brandfuel, Crowd, Feref, Four Communications, Guinness World Records, MBA, Ping Pong Digital, Pulse Films, Qumin, Talent Republic and VCCP.

Building on relations with the Chinese market specifically, ten companies from China will join UKAEG on a virtual mission organised with SHIAF and six speakers from Shanghai will speak across the three days at the Createch platform.

UKAEG chair Janet Hull, who sits on Creative Industries Council and is IPA director of marketing strategy, commented: “Our new Summer Showcase is just the start of our plans for UKAEG to make the very most of the new, emerging opportunities to connect and network with international buyers through online events such as Createch at CogX, alongside a return to being present on the ground at events as and when the lockdown fully eases.

“What we are seeing is a tremendous amount of creativity, ingenuity and technological prowess to ensure that our UK advertising sector can fully connect and engage with international buyers wherever they, and we, may be geographically. All of which is backed by our fantastic new advertising campaign, developed by Adam & Eve, in what has been a truly collaborative effort by everyone in the group.”

Advertising Association chief executive Stephen Woodford added: “It is vital we do everything we can to support trade with our international partners, particularly during this hugely challenging period for the UK and global economy. After a decade of consistent growth in our export figures, we must work doubly hard to protect UK advertising’s position as a global hub for advertising and marketing services and, by doing so, help protect jobs across our industry. We must show we are open for business and fully ready to deliver creative and effective work for customers from around the world.”

Annual UK exports of advertising services reached a total of £7.9bn in 2018, according to the latest ONS figures, a 15% increase as the industry overtook telecommunications and engineering services to become the second largest services for exports behind computer services.

Some £3.7bn worth of advertising services were exported to EU nations, accounting for 53% of overall advertising exports. The US is the largest market for UK advertising services in terms of individual country exports. In total, the USA purchases £1.1bn worth of UK advertising services, followed by Germany (£1bn), France (£733m), Switzerland (£661m), and Ireland (£640m).

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