The Premier Brand Content Event of the Year Returns: Digitas' 2011 NewFront

Digitas Brings Together Hollywood and Ad Industry In The Premier Event of Internet Week

Jun 09, 2011, 19:58 ET from Digitas

NEW YORK, June 9, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Today the premier event of Internet Week returned with a bang: the fourth annual NewFront, Digitas' online content marketplace where the Hollywood elite met with Fortune 100 marketers to create the next big digital hit. While the TV networks have been wrapping up their upfronts, The NewFront, a premier digital upfront, was shaping the next year of online content worldwide.

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With over 500 of Digitas' clients and partners in attendance, today's event attracted an audience comprised 50 percent of brand marketers.  Digitas clients joined leading content creators, distributors and talent in a dialog on unique digital programming opportunities.  Clients were given a first look and unique access to the latest digital projects and insights, resulting in more than 60 meetings between leading brands and content creators to forge deals and foster ideas.

The program, "Pipe Dreams Reality," showcased the fortunate challenges for marketers resulting from the proliferation of media opportunity.  Including live pitched content ideas from the stage, the program included:

Opening Conversation: Freedom Media

In a conversation moderated by Rick Stengel, Managing Editor of TIME Magazine; Philip (PJ) Crowley, Chair for Strategic Leadership at Penn State and former Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs; along with Amr Salama, blogger and filmmaker and author presenter of "How to Advertise a Revolution" they explained how social media is truly revolutionizing our world.

Digital Rant: The Social Entertainment Factory

Ashton Kutcher took the stage to discuss his company, Katalyst Media. Kutcher promises to find great story tellers that can share great experiences on why products and services have relevancy. Brands are built into the content for it to be less obtrusive and become a part of the entertainment.

Which Cord to Cut First? Brands as Publishers

John Battelle, Chairman, Federated Media moderated a discussion with Beth Comstock, Chief Marketing Officer and SVP of General Electric, Susan Popper, SVP of Marketing Communications for SAP, Susan Sobbott, President, OPEN at American Express, and Steven Rosenbaum, Founder of Magnify and author of Curation Nation. The panel agreed that Pipe reality offers more options for brands and content than ever before, and where that content is shared is also critical.

Live! Unstaged

Moderator Greg Kot, Music Critic, Chicago Tribune hosted Robert Kyncl, VP TV and Film Entertainment, Google, Rio Caraeff, President and CEO, VEVO, ?uestLove, Musician and Social Media Protagonist, and Rich Lehrfeld, VP of Global Sponsorship and Experiential Marketing, American Express.  The panel touched on how livestream has grown up and the music industry is being forced to scale to larger engaging experiences for fans. This shift is impacting the artists, as well as the music platforms that host their work, and the way that brands engage.

Modern Family: A Kitchen Table Discussion

Are we more connected? Is social really social? Jane Pratt, Editor in Chief of moderated a panel with Tori Spelling and Dean McDermott, actors and executive producers of Oxygen's "Tori and Dean: Home Sweet Hollywood", Jenna Rose, 12-year-old singer and YouTube sensation, Lizzie Marie, 11-year-old chef, creator of Lizzie Marie Cuisine and star of WebMD's "Healthy Cooking with Chef Lizzie", and Kevin Jonas, renown musical sensation and actor. The panelists shared personal stories of how new media has affected their relationships at home and with their friends—an honest, provocative discussion how it has affected their ability to communicate with one another.

Exclusive Online Series Previews

The event saw exclusive online series previews from major digital production companies, including "Little Women Big Cars" from Vuguru, "Take 2" from Break Media, and "The Blame Game" from Alloy. There were also online series previews from big digital players such as DECA, Fremantle,, Yahoo! Electus, DBG, Funny or Die, a John Michael Higgins Project from Revision3, "Unleashed" created by Amy Harris (Sex and the City) and a preview of the second season of the award winning "Tilt-A-World" from Al Thompson and Val Dean Entertainment.

A Digital Marketplace For All

In her closing remarks for the event, Digitas CEO Laura Lang applauded the collaboration and excitement before introducing Clive Davis, Chief Creative Officer, Sony Music Entertainment and rising music sensation, BC Jean. She also previewed Digitas' next big digital event, a revealing look at the music industry at the Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival.

Not only did top business and entertainment executives get a first look at exclusive digital content from Hollywood's power players, but the program was also livestreamed to viewers worldwide. Internet users everywhere were given a unique opportunity to pose questions to all the speakers through Twitter, using the #NF11 hashtag.

Read the insights from today's event on The Digitas Distillery Live Blog. Plus, see what others had to say on Twitter with #NF11.

Details from the day's speakers and sessions are available on:

SOURCE Digitas