Launching Boost

TLDR: I helped develop an ad-tech platform to help publishers onboard lower threshold advertisers without increasing overhead. I worked with product development to create a roadmap and requirements, prototyped the UX, and worked closely with stakeholders to keep the development schedule on track. My favorite part of this project was the challenge of simplifying a complex workflow into an easy to use interface.

The Problem

Advertising can be difficult, especially for smaller publishers and brands. For publishers – onboarding new advertisers and managing their campaigns can be time consuming and costly. For advertisers – getting setup and running with new publishers can be a headache.

The Solution

Develop a platform that enables publishers to increase their reach, deals, and sessions by streamlining the implementation of ad strategies for small budget & local advertisers. The service must be easy to use, ‘white-labeleable’, adhere to best practices (viewability, brand safety), not require more resources, and have clear reporting.

Boost Login Screen
Boost Sign Up Screen
Boost Thank You Registering
Boost Login Failure

The Players

That’s a lot, and it took a lot of back and forth between all of the stakeholders to nail down what Boost really looked like and how it functioned. Right off the bat we knew that the platform needed to be simple. Lower budget advertisers shouldn’t be expected to have a vast knowledge of digital advertising. We really latched on to the idea of ‘as easy as 1, ,2 ,3…’. What if you could log in, upload creative, set a budget, and be simply walked through the basic steps of setting up a campaign. That would be rad.

While thinking about the basic functionality of the platform we identified three main user groups that needed to be satisfied by the final technology. We knew right off the bat that the requirements for each user group were not going to be the same.

The Advertiser

The brand looking to publish and ad(s) on the site. We worked closely with advertisers to understand their challenges. Budget, simplicity (or complexity), and reporting stood out as issues we needed to solve for.

The Publisher

The publishing entity with inventory. For publishers the main challenges were, creating a platform that was white-labelable, and ensuring their best interests are kept in mind.

The Account Manager

The behind the scenes intermediary between the Advertiser and Publisher. We worked with our internal account managers to nail down the best, and least disruptive, workflow for them.

The Platform

After working out the user flow and UX we began testing a beta version of the platform with current publisher partners. We worked through all the issues of white labeling, dove deeper into the reporting mechanisms, and put ourselves in the shoes of the advertisers that would be using the platform.

What we ended up with was an elegant solution to a complex problem. Boost easily allows advertisers access to publishers and brands they might not otherwise be able to work with, while giving publishers the opportunity to maximize their inventory.

Campaign Setup
Campaign Targeting
Upload and Choose Creative
Review and Submit Campaign

The Lessons

I loved working on this project, but it certainly wasn’t smooth sailing the entire time. Anyone familiar with developing technology understands the roadblocks associated with moving a project from a requirements doc to a shippable product. This project was no different. Working with quick dev timelines, stakeholder expectations, budgets, and shifting team members all while keeping a growing business running. Developing a new product doesn’t mean that work across the rest of the company comes to a standstill. 

A big part of overcoming these obstacles was sticking to the plan. We knew the problems we were solving, and we knew the end result we were looking for, it was all about connecting the dots in between. This was my main takeaway from this project. Spending the time to truly understand a product before launching into development gives you a north star when things start to get crazy.