Team Kino owns two flagship solutions of the Smartly.io platform: the video and image templating tools. Their mission is to scale and automate the production of creative assets for digital advertising and help customers improve their campaign results through ad creatives. “To put it simply, we build image and video editors that allow users to create unique and customized ad videos and images at a massive scale,” says Pasi, the team lead for Kino. “During the last 30 days, our image templating tools rendered 16 billion images on hundreds of servers. During peak traffic times, we serve 30 gigabytes of data per second and generate 2.5 terabytes of videos daily.”
The Visual Trend in Advertising Poses Exciting Challenges
As advertising is becoming more visual than ever before, Kino is in an exciting position to drive the development of the Smartly.io platform towards a more visuality-centric form of advertising. “With visuality trending in the advertising industry, a whole new user group has been introduced to our platform,” Pasi explains. “Previously, we have focused on serving performance marketers, the people who create, manage and analyze advertising campaigns, but today we also build tools for designers, who are in charge of the visual look of the campaigns.”
A new user segment brings exciting new challenges as designers’ requirements for the platform are quite different from those of performance marketers. “Apart from serving the needs of both user types separately, we are finding ways to help them collaborate,” Pasi says. “Designers and performance marketers haven’t traditionally been working very closely together, so we’re trying to help bridge the gap between them.”
The growing importance of visuality leads to a higher demand for image and video rendering power, posing another intriguing challenge to team Kino. “At the moment, our image editing service relies on extensive caching to avoid any extra rendering,” Pasi says. “At the scale where we operate, optimizing rendering saves us a lot of server space and money.”
Previously, we have scaled our image templating tools to handle image generation at a massive scale. Scaling video templating is going to be even more complex to scale. “Building a browser-based video editor is a fairly exceptional task in itself, it’s not something you can do in every developer job,” Pasi says. “Our video rendering service Reindeer is a pretty inventive piece of tech, to be honest, and scaling it will be a thrilling project.”
Hiring a Full-Stack Engineer
Developing two flagship solutions keeps team Kino busy, which means they need to maintain a crystal clear focus and prioritize projects rigorously. Pasi hopes they will soon find time for some housekeeping, too: “Our image template editor was built using Angular, but we have moved on to use React.js, Redux, and TypeScript in our frontend since then, so we’re going to update the editor to use the same stack.”
Pasi and his teammates Riku, Sayo, Holly, and Joonas make Kino a more frontend heavy than the average development team at Smartly.io. Kino also differs from other teams because it isn’t in contact with Facebook or Pinterest APIs at all. Instead, they provide the creative platform for other development teams, like Senators, Midas, AweSoMe, and Graham. Kino’s developers collaborate closely with their product manager Maria and product designer Mala, and they are currently looking for a full-stack engineer to join their team. “We’d like to find a new teammate with a good understanding of React/Redux, as well as experience with TypeScript and in building Node.js applications,” Pasi says.
Learn more about working as a developer at Smartly.io at www.smartly.io/careers/developers.