In 2019, Alabama will be commemorating its 200th birthday. In light of this, The Alabama Bicentennial Commission reached out to Stamp to redesign their website and improve usability and speed for its Alabama 200 efforts. A three-year initiative, the site was designed following the results of a detailed Marketing Action Plan and in such a way as to boost engagement among residents and visitors in statewide educational events and activities.
Featuring an existing brand, hero images on the homepage and improved site navigation, Stamp created a new website to highlight these upcoming events and provide information on how to get involved. The objectives of the website redesign were three-fold:
- Design and develop a new website with streamlined architecture and user-friendly function to promote bicentennial events.
- Provide ways to participate, furnish community event-planning materials and house educational resources to be used in schools.
- Marketing planning to reach multiple target audiences, generate awareness and increase engagement.
Specifically, Stamp redesigned the website to prominently feature historical facts, a list of statewide partners, information for media relations, community resources (such as a toolkit for event organizers), and integration of a crowd-sourced calendar plugin. The site also features a series called “This Week in Alabama”, highlighting content from the Encyclopedia of Alabama including photos and illustrations of historical moments spanning the last 200 years.
- After the website launch, the site attracted over 1,000 visitors during a two-day kickoff event and reached almost 8,000 visitors in just eight weeks!
- 40% of the site traffic came from a direct source. This simply means that someone typed the website URL into their browser search bar after becoming aware of the initiative. This typically indicates that brand awareness efforts at the kickoff event were effective.
- Another 40% of the site traffic came from search engines, meaning various target audiences became aware of the brand and were actively seeking out the website for more information.
- Mobile responsiveness was imperative for this project. Half of the visitors accessed the site from a mobile device or tablet, and the mobile audience is expected to grow over the course of the three-year celebration.
- An incredible 1,400 people signed up to receive email alerts and ongoing marketing content from the Alabama Bicentennial Commission in just eight weeks!
Successful results like these are achieved through careful planning and goal-setting with the client. In this case, effective planning efforts resulted in a flurry of email sign-ups made possible by a signup form displayed prominently on the homepage and each interior page of the website.
Furthermore, 30+ website contact request forms from educators and other community members were submitted in the eight-week period following the launch. Attractive website aesthetics, fast page load times and engaging content prompted people to reach out for more information.
- Teachers have asked questions about available workshops to attend.
- City leaders have asked about forming committees to plan bicentennial celebration events.
- Multiple people have asked about inviting a representative to speak to their group.
- Vendors have reached out to donate collateral.
And all of this in just a short time since the initial launch!
It’s amazing what momentum and enthusiasm from the planning committee can do to spur on enthusiasm from the community. To enhance the brand further, it’s helpful to have a long-range master plan and professionally-designed online presence. How does your Marketing Action Plan outline actions that will generate results for your destination? Does your online presence reflect your destination’s brand essence? If you’d like to discuss strategies to enhance your online presence, get in touch and let’s chat about your destination.