When tech and AI meet education, it can go very well or very badly. The education sector is wary of “initiative fatigue” with the latest promises by technology companies to solve their problems, add value and generally save the day. Between the two, we often find that organizational cultures and ways of communication, even just at the level of jargon and process, can create misunderstandings.
Our client came to us to bridge this gap. They have an amazing product, which addresses a real need to build stronger community relationships pre-arrival for institutions and their students. As we know the education sector well and have an extensive network of connections, we found it was a perfect fit.
First things first. We started with the branding review. Making sure there is a clear alignment between values, product, mission, and collection vision is essential, but it is too frequently overlooked in the rush to push a product into the market. We worked with the whole team together and dug into their own perceptions of the organization.
This approach always surprises our clients, as it might feel counter-intuitive to move “backwards” before advancing. However, time and again we see it highlight key areas of dissonance even in a tight-knit team and give a chance to revisit elements of strategy and sense of purpose. Having everyone completely on the same page is priceless, and the team found great insight in this process. We move forward in unison.
With the brand solidly defined, we were able to build structure, tone, and content. The words we use, the level of complexity, and the way we order information are all brand-dependent. Without a clear image of who we are talking to, it is easy to make mistakes at this point. Get it wrong, and the bounce rate rockets, which is especially frustrating when you know the product is so good.
At all stages of the project, the client was invited to give honest feedback, in an open and ongoing dialogue. As we integrated their own tools, made the site mobile-friendly, tinkered with text, and flirted with fonts, the process was adaptive, inclusive, and with the brand firmly in mind at all times as we brought it to life online.
With the website delivered on schedule, the results were immediate. Browsing throughout the site, the user can experience:
With integrated analytics to fine-tune as we move through the first year, the website will adapt to its visitors’ preferences with tweaks and twists. Already, however, the website is now a flagship space for the brand, aligned with the client's voice and identity, to which they can confidently direct potential clients and partners without hesitation.