Have you seen our new website? We designed it with you in mind! After six months of brainstorming, gathering ideas, storyboarding, deliberation, deciphering ideas scribbled on sticky notes, meditation, research, more meditation, personal reflection, snacking to stimulate mental energy, and actually getting down to the hard work of it all, we are delighted to welcome you to our new L&P website!
As a branding, marketing, and media firm, we know how intimidating (but fun!) it can be to re-design and re-develop the company website. Fortunately, we were able to gather our best and brightest to come up with a website that showcases not only the best of L&P but also the latest thinking in web development—which, of course, is always changing.
Since this was a sizable marketing endeavor, the project involved pretty much everyone on our team at one time or another. Dena, Julie, Lexie, and Jody were absolutely instrumental in developing the idea, look, and feel of the new website. Saket sorted out the technology behind it all and did the development work. Heather, Stephanie, Mary Margaret, and Alana helped with gathering content, writing new content, and refining the site map structure.
To celebrate the launch of the new L&P website, we wanted to share a roundtable discussion between three of the process leaders and shed a little light on the thinking behind six major principles that helped to define the new site’s design and development. Without further ado, here’s Dena, the “Voice of Reason” at L&P, Saket, our “Digital Black Belt,” and Jody, our “Brand Guru.”
1. The website needs to be exciting and fun but remain functional.
Dena: Going into the new L&P website build, my thought was that, like the shoemaker’s children who have no shoes, our site wasn’t getting the same attention we give to our clients and, as a result, it didn’t adequately reflect who we have grown to be in terms of culture or capabilities. It needed a makeover. It needed to be exciting!
Saket: Agreed. It needed to be fun and functional. Even after more than 20 years, web content is still often very legalistic, like reading a training manual. Think about it: Which Super Bowl commercials do you remember? Odds are, they’re the ones that made you laugh or that blew your mind. In 2021, your customers probably don’t need to visit your website for your phone number, address, or basic info. Users are there to be engaged—even entertained—not just be told dry facts about your business.
2: The website doesn’t have to be loud and obnoxious to gain attention.
Saket: For the past few years, we’ve been seeing a move away from giant images and videos and back to clean design with generous white space, allowing both our eyes and the content to breathe. Each graphic element or word on a page has a purpose. It’s there to engage the user, to cause them to think.
Jody: At the same time, we knew we needed to make use of bright, vivid colors to help represent L&P’s approach—bold, fun, and different. Besides meaningful content with big messages, we also wanted to highlight the unique personality of L&P as a company and as a group of individuals.
3: Web users are reading more and more from what they’re reading.
Saket: In years past, I have always pushed clients to cut their messaging down into bite-size, digestible chunks. That’s still the way to go, but we’re seeing users that are more eager to engage with content. Once they’re hooked, they’re hungry for more. The tradeoff is that you have to keep them engaged, or they’ll swipe on by.
Dena: The new website didn’t need content for content’s sake; it needed meaningful content that expressed comprehensive information about who we are, the work we do, and the results we’ve achieved for our clients. It needed to be compelling, relevant, and useful to visitors. Concise yet substantial.
4. Mobile is still hot, but desktop usage is on the rise.
Saket: Prior to 2020, personal browsing was almost always done on our phones. COVID-19 forced us all back into our homes and in front of our own non-company-issued desktops and laptops, and we found ourselves falling in love with them all over again. Suddenly, we were more productive and had more time to spend on our computers. Looking at analytics and industry data, it’s clear that desktop viewing is back, so more and more users will be able to see beautiful widescreen designs, even while our site is still mobile-friendly.
Dena: This also reflects some of the best practices we consider and employ on behalf of clients in terms of design, functionality, SEO, and how content is consumed.
5. Content should promote a sense of community and togetherness.
Saket: We pride ourselves on being “placemakers.” Our clients come to us with a few hundred acres of wilderness, and we help them turn it into a place where people want to live and, more importantly, belong. Websites and digital content are the same, and when a user engages with your website, your content needs to provide that sense of belonging.
There is no magic template that will replace good, well-thought-out content. Content is still king. No matter the size of your business, your message is always competing for attention. If you want to optimize your marketing budget, write and develop better content.
6. Launch when ready.
Jody: Some ideas simply presented themselves as “of course we’ll do that” from the very start, but there were plenty of last-minute considerations and decisions to make prior to launch. We wanted to represent the “all hands on deck” mentality of L&P through hand spot illustrations, while we thought the ampersand motif provided a very “yes and…” feel that embodies the creative brainstorming process.
Dena: The whole project may have taken six months, but when the website was finally ready to launch, we had something that looks, sounds, and feels more like who L&P is today!
Of course, our website is nothing without you, so let us know what you think of the new digs! If you’ve got a marketing project or other venture that could use this same kind of dedication, craft, and creativity, reach out and let us help! We can put our entire team of creative thinkers and smart doers on the job to make things happen for you, too!