One of the biggest challenges many business owners face is keeping up with online advertising needs. Even professional digital marketers often struggle to keep up with the management needs of their clients’ online marketing campaigns.
After working for a global advertising network and spending countless hours managing online marketing campaigns for customers, it occurred to Harry Kanistik, a former digital account manager andFrank.ai’s CMO, that there must be an easier way.
In 2015, Frank.ai was founded in Tallinn, Estonia with the intention of building a genius supercomputer capable of automating and optimizing the online advertising efforts of small- to medium-sized businesses. We had a talk with Kanistik about the current state of online advertising.
Programmatic advertising, or the automated real-time buying and selling of online ads using algorithms, has been increasing in popularity for some years. There are already a number of massive online marketplaces and ad exchanges available where software programs buy and sell advertising space or marketing functions can be automated.
On an ad exchange, advertisers, agencies, and ad networks are able to buy digital ads across a vast range of publisher sites by way of automated auctions. The ad is uploaded, the target audience and preferred demographic is selected, and the advertising budget is set. The ad exchange automates the buying and selling process, making it easier for advertisers or agencies to manage a number of ad campaigns.
Traditionally, large agencies or ad networks would need to connect to an ad exchange using a demand-side platform (DSP), such as MediaMath or AppNexus. However, these aren’t always effective for smaller ad campaigns with lower advertising budgets.
Google and Facebook introduced machine learning to the online advertising space back in 2013, providing a range of automation solutions intended to help marketers improve the results they achieved from digital ad campaigns.
Taking the concept of programmatic advertising and combining it with machine learning, Frank.ai was created. The concept was to allow individual advertisers, small business owners or agencies managing smaller accounts to create and manage digital advertising campaigns from a single, user-friendly platform. It’s also ideal for businesses or agencies managing advertising campaigns with a much smaller budget in place.
Frank.ai was founded by CMO Harry Kanistik, a former digital account manager at McCann Erickson Estonia, CTO Ahti Nurme, formerly of Skype, and CEO Jan Plaan, former CEO of McCann Erickson Estonia, all of who have previous experience working in media at digital advertising agencies and within the eCommerce industry.
The basis for the platform was to create a user-friendly digital marketing management tool that everyone could use. Frank was built on the premise of being able to effectively manage the online marketing efforts of small- to medium-sized business owners.
Kanistik said in an interview with The Scope Weekly, “We understand SMBs and their pain points. We also have experience on the client side, working with agencies. We were sick of wasting client’s money on ad buys.”
The result is an artificial intelligence-powered platform that is connected to all of the largest ad exchanges. Frank is programmed to set up, manage, and invest the allocated advertising budgets across a range of different channels, including Google, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter Instagram, and many more. Frank’s vast reach allows it to display ads on more than 2 million websites globally.
Essentially, the platform is designed to help the marketing efforts of businesses and brands achieve more with their advertising spend, with much less time, effort and money spent realizing those goals.
The technology enables business owners and brands of all sizes to create cross-platform campaigns within just a few minutes. Frank asks some simple questions about the ad campaign, including where ads are to be shown and who the people in the target audience are.
Once the ad campaign is launched, Frank takes care of the rest, including media planning, ads buying, real-time optimization, and reporting. Ad campaigns are automatically launched across different channels and Frank begins monitoring the campaign in real-time, optimizing creatives, target groups and channels to maximize results with minimal spending.
Bramble Outdoor successfully used Frank’s automated online advertising to increase its online sales by 47%. The adventure apparel retailer launched an ad campaign with Frank with the goal of driving targeted traffic to its website, with the ultimate goal of increasing on-site sales.
An excel spreadsheet filled with 1,000 of Bramble Outdoor’s best customers was uploaded to Frank, who was then able to compile a profile of what the people in the company’s
targeted audience should look like. The result was a massive increase in online sales, including an order from a retail behemoth.
Another company that chose to take advantage of Frank’s automated digital marketing expertise was Thimble, a monthly subscription service specializing in DIY electronics kits. The goal for their ad campaign was to drive targeted traffic to the homepage in an effort to increase the number of monthly subscribers.
The results showed a staggering 360% ROI (return on investment). For every $1 spent they received $3.60.
Kanistik said: “We have plans to onboard more clients as they continue to explore opportunities with larger tech companies and agencies.” Some of the company’s existing clients include Oakland Harley-Davidson, Wagner Custom Skis, Bramble Outdoor and Hypoxi.
Photos courtesy of Frank.ai.
Full disclosure: Please note that The Scope Weekly received a small donation to support our journalism-internship program. All thoughts and opinion are our own.