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Life in AdTech: Leveraging Client Feedback For Product Development

In our blog series “Life in AdTech” we showcase incredible StackAdapters. From client-facing Account Executives, behind-the-scenes Data Scientists, or our Product team at the forefront of innovation, everyone plays a vital role in providing the best product and service to our clients.

This month features Daniel Kang, Senior Product Manager at StackAdapt. In this post, we will get an inside look at what his role entails, the importance of client feedback, and what trends he’s seeing in programmatic advertising.

What is the main focus of your role as a Product Manager? 

The main focus of my role is to help determine what StackAdapt features we need to build and implement to enable our users to create amazing ad campaigns. In practice, this role involves several activities! My team conducts user research to understand our users’ problems and needs, and then we work with engineering and design to build solutions. And, we work with our customer-facing and marketing teams to then take those products to market. 

Being a Product Manager at StackAdapt requires versatility. We have to be comfortable with all aspects of product development, such as engineering, design, analytics, marketing, and research.

I think the most important part of my role is being able to set really clear goals and outcomes for the teams that I work with. Everyone has an opinion on what the right thing to build is. It’s crucial as a Product Manager to help everyone align on what the best decisions for our clients and features are.

Why is client feedback so critical for product development and user experience?

Client feedback is the linchpin for the success of our product. Because our clients are the ones who interact with our platform day in and day out, we have to deeply understand what challenges they might be encountering that we could solve. 

For example, last year we received feedback from clients about the process for editing multiple campaigns. My team identified that this process could be streamlined, and so we launched a bulk editing project. This project spanned across multiple teams including engineering, product, and design.

Now this project is drawing to a close, and it’s amazing to see how much more efficient a lot of our clients’ workflows have become. This update to the platform was all a result of that initial feedback that we reviewed a year ago!

What trends in programmatic do you think we’ll see take off this year?

The biggest trend my team is seeing is the rise of contextual targeting due to upcoming changes to privacy regulation. Our team is continuing to innovate and build tools that allow advertisers to have more advanced contextual targeting capabilities. That’s why earlier this year we released Page Context AI. Leveraging StackAdapt machine learning and AI, Page Context AI enables our clients to reach their audience, based on the content they are consuming.

Clients can build a custom contextual strategy by inputting in context and out of context phrases so that our patent-pending algorithm can determine the best ad placements based on a publisher or site’s content. Contextual advertising is an exciting trend to see picking up, because contextual targeting offers a great opportunity for innovation in targeting practices. 

I have also noticed the growing importance of programmatic audio and connected TV (CTV) in the past couple years. They are great channels to leverage because they are particularly well-geared toward holding the attention of consumers.

For example, audio can capture the attention of engaged listeners in screen-free moments, and CTV’s natural full-screen experience lends itself to highly viewable ads in an environment in which the audience is already captive. Programmatic audio and CTV are gaining significance as more and more advertisers are recognizing their effectiveness and factoring them into their multi-channel media plans. 

What is the most rewarding part of being a Product Manager at StackAdapt?

It feels amazing when our product, engineering, and design teams are “in the zone” with each other during the product development process. It’s a super hard state to reach, but when you do feel in sync with your team members, it feels like you can build anything! That synergy is so rewarding. 

But the most rewarding aspect of being a Product Manager is receiving positive responses from customers and internal stakeholders about a feature I worked on. We are a part of every feature from conception to launch, and it’s immensely gratifying to see the impact that our work has on StackAdapt users.

In each new addition, we will be highlighting our teams and employees in our “Life In AdTech” series—stay tuned for more!

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