By Alex Brownsell

Programmatic is a “super-baby”, which has developed from infant to adult in two years, and must be seen in the context of that maturity, says UM global chief executive Daryl Lee.

Speaking on a panel session about the role of programmatic in marketing campaigns, Lee argued that role of automation is changing rapidly, and that advertisers must keep up.

“Programmatic is like a ‘super-baby’, it’s gone from being an infant to an adult in two years,” said Lee.

“The original intent was a way of automating some of the inventory in digital which wasn’t selling as easily. It used to mean automating your buying system. It is now about precision, about audiences and which moments are right for those audience.”

And programmatic, said Lee, can act like “Viagra” for improving the creativity of advertising.

Also on the panel was Luke Kigel, Johnson & Johnson director of media and connections, Americas, Cadreon global CEO Arun Kumar, and Mashable chief revenue officer Seth Rogin.

Kigel said that many in his business and beyond are guilty of overcomplicating programmatic: “One of the challenges with buzzwords is it means different things to different people, but the concept is not that complicated.

“We’re on the journey like everyone else, and I feel like we’re on the leading edge in our ability to articulate performance. But at some point there will need to be a seismic shift in workflow.

“Marketers used to spend 80% of time on preparation, then it goes live, and a bit of time on how it’s performance. It will become the inverse over time,” he added.