At the core of Assemble culture is an unwavering drive to keep improving. We love to push the boundaries creatively, and we know that to do that, we have to work smarter. With the rapid development of AI technology, this focus has never been more important to stay ahead of the production game. So we research. We learn. We test. And we build. Because why should we only rely on the tools out there when we can create our own — and make them even better?
Our latest tool not only addresses current gaps in workflow to make banner development more efficient, but also automates a majority of the process to make it faster and even better. It’s called BannerForge.
The Motivation Behind the Build
With multiple talented developers on our team, Assemble is big on collaboration culture. By supporting one another when bandwidth is thin or jumping in on various projects, it allows us to keep the process moving to hit client deadlines. But along with a diverse team of talent comes differing expertise — and in the case of banner development, it resulted in two different frameworks being used for the same process. This isolation only complicates assignments for project managers and limits our ability to collaborate as effectively as possible.
We knew we needed to bring the best of both frameworks into one place.
What is BannerForge?
BannerForge is an innovative automation platform supported by an entire library of reusable templates, analyzing all the best parts of each framework (ie., animations, images, meta tags, URL links, etc.). Instead of being an actual framework itself, it’s a set of comprehensive utilities that streamline the execution of repetitive and very time consuming tasks — like resizing, optimizing assets, previewing, and hosting on staging servers to share.
The platform seamlessly integrates banners created with different technologies, such as Animate CC, JS, and CSS3 (assuming they adhere to regular IAB’s Display Ads conventions), and automatically generates multiple duplicates of the master folder with the ability to track and adjust each portion of code to define the proper dimensions of each one. Since the templates are built to recycle animation scripts almost entirely, developers can then easily swap the set of images on each resize and make updates through minor tweaks.
It gets even better. BannerForge can effortlessly optimize imagery, conveniently review them on a local staging site, and create ZIP packages for sharing. With a single command, it can analyze CSS files and change dimensions to produce multiple size variations in seconds, then package all the assets by size into individual ZIP files, ready for a smooth delivery to marketing and media teams.
But probably one of the coolest features is link staging. BannerForge allows you to generate staging links in just seconds, eliminating the need for FTP clients or manual web portal uploads. You can effortlessly push files to a staging environment directly from your computer — also through a single command.
The Key Benefits
- Banners created by an external team or those changing hands within production can easily be updated and created by developers with varying framework expertise
- Automation allows production times to be cut down significantly, expediting the development process and allowing quicker turnarounds
- The flexibility to work with or without ISI (Important Safety Information), ensuring compliance in regulated environments.
- The ability to pass along these cost-saving benefits to our clients.
Our banner experts have completed platform testing and are now conducting live work sessions and training with our full development team. As our developers continue to become more familiar with the platform and its capabilities, we’re excited to continue to add new features and enhancements based on their feedback. We’re even considering the possibility of sharing it with other agencies and development teams as a service in the future.
At Assemble, we’re always looking for new enhancements to make our processes faster and better. If you want to learn more about BannerForge, as well as our other recent developments, and how they can help us take your production process to the next level, contact us today.