School of Biological Sciences BBSRC DTP

Project: Build new Drupal website using University standard template. Produce student, Alumni and external partner videos, plus a featured Student montage video about the programme.

BEFORE: (Original website)

School of Biological Sciences BBSRC DTP – Old Website

Site appraisal – Issues

  • Appeals to existing students who know where to find information
  • Poor navigation menus, no ‘About’ pages to encourage audience towards the school. No easy to understand features and benefits or differentiational factors.
  • Duplicated information with pages appearing in more than one area under different menu headings, particularly the different courses, very confusing.
  • Too much text, not enough focus on key benefit points. Text written in academic tone, not simple or direct enough for all audiences, although it still needs to retain ‘science’ tone and some terminilogy that would be understood by current students.
  • Typical dated University styled narrative, not suitable for diverse modern audiences
  • Not inclusive, does not show student personalities or social media links to encourage potential students from all backgrounds.
  • Shows programmes that are no longer supported, builds hopes up unnecessarily
  • Very little graphic content, too many words and long paragraphs
  • Lack of testimonials and visual content to encourage students to choose Cambridge.

AFTER (New Website):

https://bbsrcdtp.lifesci.cam.ac.uk

Hero’ Promotional Video

My project plan/approach consisted of:

INVESTIGATION

  • What does “good” looks like for this type of site/public sector? – Best practice in ‘Industry’, research competitors
  • Target Audience -Currently too aimed at existing students. Change to also target potential students
  • Template – What can Drupal do/not do that we would like? Limitations and compromises may have to be made, against having an external hosted site with more templates/functions.
  • Navigation: Menu structure – Current groupage of repetitive items under wrong headings – Propose better structure/layout, customer journey
  • Student Profiles – What do we need/where/visuals
  • Alumni – Develop links and request materials (Testimonials/Videos)

PLANNING

  • Brand Identity: Select Drupal colour scheme within colours and University Template limitations
  • Communications – Visualise, and create a narrative and an identity to appeal to Current and Potential students, with inclusivity and opportunity being key drivers
  • Digital Assets: Ensure all text content and media assets to be used are available in dedicated ‘Staging’ area.

PRODUCTION

  • Build: Create menu and draft pages with image block placeholders and initial text
  • Software – Communicate regularly with Drupal developers throughout to secure changes to code where possible.
  • Curate – Source media (Images, videos, documents etc) to be used and edit in Photoshop/Adobe Premiere Pro. Set up and run Qualtrics surveys to gather Student profile information and images.
  • Content Management: Review and work with key working group stakeholders to edit page content, suggest “less is more” etc.
  • Videos – Write emails to Students with directions/questions on how to film video content for use (all formats).
  • Transcribe Video text: Pull out salient features text to go next to video embeds on site.
  • Hosting: Due to storage limitations in template, create YouTube channel to use for embeds.
  • Produce 10 individual videos from raw footage at low/no cost budget (various level of orientation and audio quality). Convert to mp4’s via Prism and stylise for web pages and YouTube. Embeds into pages and text wrap arounds
  • ‘Hero’ Video – Make a feature video, curate and suggest suitable music to showcase the students testimonials and bring out key reasons to choose Cambridge.
  • Post Production: Proof read texts, videos and user journey testing
  • Audit – Watch through and present to Working Group team and check continuity and flow of website
  • Launch Pad: – Sign Off project
  • Go Live: Prepare launch imagery and text and share with associated signs and colleagues to build awareness

POST LAUNCH

  • Train: Handover project templates and train users how to edit content.
  • Follow-up: Ensure customer is satisfied and tweak as a consultant if required

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