Interviews, insight & analysis on digital media & marketing

Celebrating Women in Programmatic: Beckie Underwood, Head of Studio at Azerion

The Women In Programmatic Network was set up to represent women in the programmatic industry. To celebrate its work and its members, NDA is running a series of interviews with its members. Next up is Beckie Underwood, Head of Studio at Azerion

Why did you join the Women in Programmatic network and what do you hope to get out of it?

I joined to be inspired, to build confidence and to help women in the industry reach their full potential. Surrounding yourself with ambition and passion is always inspiring and I’m proud to be a part of a network of women genuinely wanting more for one another. I’m happy to help in any way I can.

What are the biggest challenges and opportunities for women in the programmatic industry today?

I’d like to see more humanity in the industry. Programmatic is seen as mathematical and technical. Those elements are definitely crucial but inciting positive feelings and emotions are too. Empathy and having emotions is something women are criticised for but they are valuable traits to the industry. They can help us build more effective and memorable creative. They can also help us to improve the industry by building happier and more inclusive teams.

What does the industry need to do to champion women in the programmatic industry better?

Ha, well it seems we can champion ourselves! People better listen up… 

What are the biggest challenges and opportunities overall for the programmatic industry this year? 

I think we need to realise that technology isn’t creative. We are all so concerned about getting campaigns measured accurately, efficiency and the best price that we are not challenging ourselves on the creative front. The result is that ads look the same. Looking the same is not going to positively change the life of a brand. We need to be thinking of bigger ideas to fit within the construct. We are all working with technical limitations but we’re not robots and the big ideas come from beyond those ‘limitations’ with the feeling that something can be better.

What is your biggest achievement in programmatic to date?

Impact formats! the types of formats we build are bespoke and not the run of the mill ad sizes. Developing them and certifying thousands of sites so that they can be easily traded was/is no easy task. A great deal of effort still goes into this every day. Our creative tech partners publishing adops and studio team put so much effort into making sure our ads look amazing. I like seeing our creative in the wild looking so great on publisher sites.