Dal Singh Gill is VP Global Partnerships, Seedtag and host of the Adtech Heroes podcast. He has 12 years of programmatic experience spanning media owners Yahoo, Mail Online and Spotify. At Spotify he was the first programmatic commercial hire.
Who is your digital hero?
I tried to pinpoint one person as my digital hero but found it difficult as it’s a combination of heroes. These guys and girls shaped the programmatic industry as we see it today starting from the roots (or should I say deal ids) to the senior positions they hold today.
Those that have been in programmatic sales long enough will know who all of these are and would remember when the programmatic world consisted of a few dozens rather than few 100 in the UK.
These are in no particular order, Azad Ali, Georgina Hughes, Yu-Hsuan Lin (Sam), Lina Ferretti Angelides, Tom Harrison, Jenny Hubbard, Kiesse Lamour, Dan Larden.
What have they done to win hero status in your eyes?
Similar to the Eternals in the Marvel Universe these heroes have helped the industry move into the right direction without a flashy cape or (massively sponsored) opportunities to speak in public at events.
They have somewhat flown under the radar but have been instrumental at their respective agencies in propelling what is such a commonly used term today “programmatic”. They have had their internal battles to convince teams while ensuring they are up to date with the ever changing industry and have done all of this with a positive and upbeat nature.
How has their heroism helped drive digital?
I think the commonality amongst all of the heroes I have mentioned is they have conducted themselves over the years without “ego”. This ego exists in our industry that’s highly competitive and whether its media agencies pitching against each other for clients or media owners dissing one another to get that £10k budget.
The ability to communicate well, combined with trust, knowledge and drive has helped them drive digital forward. But the humbleness and lack of ego is what really stands out for me.
What are the biggest challenges in digital we need another hero to solve?
Staying with the theme of “ego” I believe the challenges that we face in digital now are silos and people, players and companies working by themselves to better themselves only. There needs to be an element of education and collaboration in everything we do and that needs to be highlighted in our day to day.
There is a massive magnifying glass on everything we do as individuals and companies and we need to build this trust in an industry which has taken a lot of stick especially related to privacy, generalisation, unsustainability, data and brand safety.
What is your most heroic personal achievement so far in digital?
Less of a heroic but more of a proud moment has been hosting the “Adtech Heroes” podcast which has been insightful talking about various topics from diversity and ethics to video and DOOH. You can check it out here.