Unifying Production, Product, and Brand.

When I joined the Expedia Media Solutions (MESO) the focus of the role was to help improve the creative direction for the existing product line. I soon realized in order to achieve this we needed to start from the beginning of the product life cycle by creating end-to-end alignment for all MESO products.

In the examples below I have highlighted areas where I was able to create alignment with the MESO teams.

Visual Direction – Production Style Guide

The Challenge: To create a guide that provided product reasoning for the sales/product teams but also provided detailed specs for the production houses. The guide also needed to be easily understood by many non-english speaking teams. The end result was a guide that features product overview/reasoning on the left of each page, the spec callouts on the right of each page, and the line of business(s) the product lived on in the bottom left.
The final guide ended up being 44 pages and came with a 15 page email companion guide.

Visual Direction – Campaign Manager 1-Sheets

Once the style guide was complete next came the need to unify the campaign managers and sales teams to better understand each of the more complex products. This product in particular had high visibility with both internal business teams as well as the customer. It needed to be on-brand and on-spec at all times. With the role of the campaign manager as a bridge between the advertiser’s needs and brand Expedia needs we created these 1-sheets to set product expectations from the beginning.

Art Direction

As MESO began to bring on new clients the need arose to provide new design direction. We began in incorporate animation, video and smart ads. With each of these ads several teams worked closely to provide product, technical as well as brand direction support to create products that the clients were happy with.

New UI Friendly Products

With existing products aligned we now needed to look how we could grow the portfolio for all of Expedia’s brands. This included Travelocity, Hotels.com, Hotwire, Venere, WOTIF, Air Asia Go, Last Minute, Cheap Tickets, and Orbitz. With so many brands the need to create a scalable solution that was outside of the existing IAB standards became top priority. Within 1 month of starting I presented the need for responsive/native ad products to be a part of the current product inventory. ¬†Not only do responsive ads allow for better/smarter ad integrations they also allow for a on-brand user experience.

New Custom Products

The initial feedback received about these concepts was great, but the sales teams came back that the advertisers thought their partner brands were lost in this execution. The next step came in looking at how we could implement responsive ads with custom fonts, images and buttons. The next phase was also successful and proved we could build a product category that met both the advertiser and user experience needs.