There is nothing better than decompressing during a holiday break only to jump straight into the world’s largest tech show in CES shortly thereafter—in Las Vegas no less. Sin City will soon turn into a weeklong, cross-town gathering for a boatload of brands, C-suite executives and celebrities for the 51st installment of CES.
For marketers whose calling card is to thrive on the business of consumer technologies, the annual show offers a comprehensive look into transcending industries and stimulating emerging markets.
Tech, brands, Hollywood and marketing will collide—mostly at C Space in Aria—throughout the entire week as leaders will explore topics like how the business of content distribution is changing the future of media, marketing, advertising and entertainment industries.
If you ever find yourself lost, distracted or splurging life savings on the slot machines, point yourself back to Aria, since most of the CES programming there is likely up your alley.
Marketers have already prognosticated that this year’s CES will serve as a springboard to monitor how disruptive innovations like blockchain, voice assistants, artificial intelligence, virtual and augmented reality, among others, are going to shape consumers and industries alike.
Since a wide majority of marketing executives are not in town for the press conferences and gadgets, they mostly skip the show floor and instead opt for more private sessions with panels, conference programs and meetings. With arranged libations seemingly within arm’s reach at all times, CES also somewhat doubles as a booze-filled party.
AListDaily will be soberly reporting from CES throughout the entire week (and attending a few parties at night, if the lithium body batteries allow). Come along for the ride.
Sunday, January 7
Unless you decided to celebrate the New Year in Las Vegas and already have MoneyGram on speed dial, this is likely your first official day in town to conduct business.
Grab your badge from any of the locations listed here and get ready for CES Unveiled if you’re an industry analyst (or member of the press). Brands like Liberty Mutual, LG and Johnson & Johnson and a slew of start-ups will showcase their new tech products.
5 to 8:30 p.m.
Shorelines Exhibit Hall at Mandalay Bay
Monday, January 8
If you haven’t scrubbed through the Advertising, Entertainment & Content sessions yet, do so—now. There is a smorgasbord of panels in marketing, advertising, gaming, VR, AR, music and more throughout the entire week that begin today. Sessions kick off at the Las Vegas Convention Center and Sands Expo (inside The Venetian) and later carry into C Space at Aria.
If you’re still exploring VR and AR as a strategy to see if it’s the best relationship between your brand and consumer, then head over to Digital Hollywood and check out:
VR/AR as a Branding Strategy
1 to 2 p.m.
Tech East, LVCC, North Hall, N258
MediaLink CES Kick-off Party
8 p.m. 12 p.m.
Encore at XS Nightclub
*By Invitation Only*
Senior executives who buy and sell media from creative and media agencies, chief marketing officers, media inventory holders, investment banking, private equity and venture capitalists, leading entertainment studio and entertainment executives, and select talent, will be in attendance.
Tuesday, January 9
Exhibitors at Tech East at the Las Vegas Convention and Tech West at Sands Expo officially open doors to the jam-packed showroom floors, and it will most definitely require a sanitizer bath and quarantine soon after. There are over 3,900 exhibitors, so channel into your inner Douglas MacArthur if you plan on seeing new products and map an efficient plan of attack that will win you many medals—maybe even at Cannes if you do it right.
Just one note: if you had intentions of sitting in on Federal Communications Commission chairman Ajit Pai, the chief dismantler of net neutrality protections, re-do your schedule because Pai has bailed on his CES speaking engagement.
Instead, you should check out the CMO panel featuring executives from Turner, Panasonic, Mastercard, Deloitte and The Economist, as they explain their approach to technology and share best practices in data, analytics and transparency as part of their business plan. For those who will not be at CES, this session will be livestreamed.
C Space Storytellers: CMO Panel
3:30 to 4:15 p.m.
Tech South, Aria, Level 1, Pinyon Ballroom
CES Opening Party
10 p.m. to 1 a.m.
Omnia Nightclub at Caesars Palace
What can happen at an open bar inside one of the city’s hottest nightclubs . . . on a Tuesday? You’re just going to have to hail a self-driving taxi to Caesars Palace and find out.
Wednesday, January 10
Variety’s Entertainment Summit
9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Tech South, Aria
If looking to produce, monetize, market and distribute content for digitally savvy audiences, this day-long event featuring over 40 speakers from top companies will be worth your time. The summit is open to all CES registrants.
MMS After Hours
Chandelier Bar at The Cosmopolitan
*By Invitation Only*
The occasional booze fest may be fun every once in a while, but if you’re a senior brand and agency marketer looking to connect with executives in the digital marketing industry in a more intimate manner, this mixer made possible by the Mobile Marketing Summit may be right for you.
Thursday, January 11
Social Innovation Summit
9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Tech South, Aria
The full-day event—billed as the Tech for Good conference—unites over 500 corporate executives, grantmakers, celebrities, investors and social innovators for a series of programs, discussions and networking events centered around the role of technology in driving social impact. Themes include:
Tech & Impact: Corporate pioneers achieving the bottom line of profits, people and the planet.
Inclusive Entrepreneurship: Creating platforms to diversify innovation for entrepreneurs, investors and corporations.
The Future of Work: The role of emerging technologies in educating new generations and creating the jobs of the future.
10 p.m. to 4 a.m.
Hakkasan Nightclub at MGM Grand
If you’re taking advantage of the VR, AR, mixed reality programming curated by the Virtual Reality Festival, head over to the VR Arcade at Hakkasan Nightclub.
Friday, January 12
C Space—one of the several marketer safe havens, remember?—is closed because it’s no longer offering programming. The Advertising, Entertainment & Content calendar is bone dry. There are just three conference sessions in total taking place across town (esports is one them). There are no more press conferences and news to take in. Las Vegas is a little darker than it was yesterday.
However, bleary-eyed exhibitors who burnt the midnight oil all week are in for business for one last day, so if you missed out on anything particularly special, now is the time.
Dig through the couch of your hotel room for any left behind bitcoins, and head over to McCarran International Airport. It’s time to go home.