“Ultimately, we wanted the user to feel a sense of calm from the new Skai HQ experience. After interviewing so many marketers, one thing that has become incredibly clear to me is that their days are full. We wanted to know that we hear them, and we’re working both on ways to drive marketing ROI and to help make their jobs easier.”
One of Skai’s core uses for marketers is to help them keep an eye on their programs and ensure they’re working as intended by reducing errors and driving performance. To better help our clients with these critical goals, we launched Skai HQ, the very first screen users see when they log into our platform.
Skai HQ provides clients with an engaging omnichannel experience that cuts through all the noise and crystallizes the data that matters most by surfacing program anomalies and meaningful business insights across their paid search and retail media campaigns. It also provides actionable recommendations for users to take control and fix common issues dragging down performance.
Five Questions about Skai HQ with Skai’s Casey Gordon
Product Manager Casey Gordon is a University of Pittsburgh graduate who started her career at Skai in 2018 on the client success team. She then moved on to the product org in 2020 and was promoted to Product Manager in 2021.
Casey has been quarterbacking the Skai HQ project since its inception. Her primary role was to help illuminate needs and define solutions of value by interviewing clients and Skai’s internal experts. Casey then worked with multiple groups within Skai—UX design, technical development, technical design, product marketing, and other functions—to help bring this exciting platform experience to life.
Today, we interview Casey to better understand Skai HQ and its value for our clients.
What was the motivation behind building Skai HQ?
As a user of Skai, you can access unprecedented data that marketers never had before. But so many buttons, grids, and drop-down menus can be overwhelming. Where do I start? What do I do?
We wanted to help new and seasoned users by taking all of the really rich, valuable signals from different places on the platform and distilling them into a very digestible experience. Bottom line, from one screen, you know exactly what’s going on in your programs—especially the most pressing issues you may need to address. This way, clients can optimize their program quickly and easily without digging through the entire system.
Data is only there to generate insights. Why make our clients spend an hour pulling reports looking for needles in a haystack when there are some very common things that marketers want to know? Why not just give them a list of those everyday things that impact performance and useful suggestions to fix any issues?
From these needs, the idea for Skai HQ experience was born.
What did you know that marketers wanted out of this?
This began with our new direction [from our rebrand from Kenshoo]. Skai prides itself as a data-driven, insights-focused company. We go beyond just being a leading campaign management platform, by giving our clients the essential data-driven directions to optimize their programs.
Marketers want to know what’s happening with their budget. They want to know if something is going wrong, and they want to know it fast. They want to know first thing in the morning to fix those things before any more issues pop up. They want to know if campaigns are correctly structured. Have they made a mistake somewhere? They want to learn if something’s trending in the wrong direction. Oh, wait, my KPIs have been going down for the last seven days, and I had no idea. They want a quick indication like something’s not right here and to figure it out.
We hear from our clients that we have the most robust functionality in the market to drive performance. And the valuable data-driven insights are certainly in our platform—but it requires a user to go into those analytics features to pull them out. Where Skai HQ shines is that those valuable insights are right there, front and center, when a client logs in. That way, they can immediately see if there are any issues they need to jump on.
What did you know you wanted to be there when someone opened Skai HQ?
To be sure, they’ve evolved, but we knew the goal would be total performance at a glance.
Ultimately, we wanted the user to feel a sense of calm from the Skai HQ experience. After interviewing so many marketers, one thing that has become incredibly clear to me is that their days are full. We wanted to know that we hear them, and we’re working both on ways to drive marketing ROI and to help make their jobs easier. We wanted to ensure they had the tools to do their jobs based on data effectively. Based on the facts. Based on the things that are driving performance or bringing it down.
We started thinking about our commerce-driven clients first. That was a focus for us and the things they need to work on daily. And we knew there were insights around specific performance metrics that all marketers would want—or at least certain best practices that are good for anyone selling products online. Skai HQ was a way to surface those in a way that reflected our new company vision.
It’s clear marketers need to get out of ad channels and data siloes. How does the Skai HQ experience help facilitate an omnichannel approach?
Skai HQ is perfect for the omnichannel marketer as it’s a centralized location for all data sources from Skai channels and Skai publishers in a single view. If you’re a director or a manager interested in a bird’s eye view of your programs across Google, Amazon, Walmart, etc., in one place, you can get that omnichannel view.
But it’s still great for both the individual channel practitioners as well as for marketers who are tasked with omnichannel. For example, if I’m a Google-only campaign manager. I may not care what’s going on on other channels. I just want to see what’s relevant to me. Skai HQ is going to let you zero in on what you’re looking for—whether it’s omnichannel or not.
What’s been the feedback so far, and what’s next?
Our clients are telling us that they’re ready and the functionality from Skai HQ is exactly what they are looking for. They want their technology partners to show them exactly what they need and simplify the process. They want data-evidenced information throughout their day, so they can feel confident in the decisions they’re making in their programs.
Marketers we’ve spoken to about Skai HQ say that they are going to love knowing within moments of logging in every morning that everything’s working as expected. It will be a tremendous load off of their minds. That’s a great feeling for our technology to deliver, and I’m incredibly proud of that—it’s something we knew would be valuable, but it’s incredible to hear just how much our clients are going to love that feeling.
Skai HQ is just the start of an evolution on how we’re going to bring features from around Skai that serve different purposes & different channels and bring them into this experience together. Even seasoned clients of Skai will suddenly be exposed to valuable parts of our platform that they may have never used before simply because they’re showing up in Skai HQ. That way, they’re more relevant than before.
For example, if I’m a paid search marketer and I’ve never used Skai’s Search Term Analysis, I may skip that part of the platform without even noticing it. But, within Skai HQ, Skai tells me that I could be saving money if I add some negative keywords to my campaigns that will resonate with me. That’s motivation to learn about Search Term Analysis and use it more often.
In a sense, this may be the most valuable contribution of Skai HQ to our clients. After 16+ years of building industry-leading marketing platforms, we have many excellent features and functionality! Skai HQ will bring many of our existing features to the surface.
Interested in learning how our new Skai HQ can enhance your marketing operation?
Skai empowers the world’s leading brands and agencies across industries to manage omnichannel digital marketing campaigns. Our omnichannel marketing platform includes solutions for retail media, paid search, paid social, and app marketing. We’ll keep you at the forefront of the digital evolution with data and insights, marketing execution, and measurement tools that work together to drive robust brand growth.
For more information, schedule a brief demo today to see everything Skai has to offer including the new Skai HQ experience!