The new West Midlands Dance website is now live!
Building on the successful blog, the website now allows anyone to sign-up and add dance-related updates, images and videos to their profile – and dance professionals can also upload events and job opportunities.
One of the primary changes is that the site is now more 'open' – available for smaller dance schools and individual teachers, producers, choreographers (who may not have their own website) to promote and showcase their work alongside dance's big-name companies.
As such we needed to completely re-think the brand identity. It needed pep and verve and fun and openness; the key word here was 'entertainment'.
The logo uses the cuddly Cubano typeface; also used for headline information in print and on the website.
Layered shard graphics add depth; the sharp edges softened by the logo and colour palette. A suite of tealy-blue tones work as the backdrop to splashes of yellow, pink and purple – used respectively to colour-code highlight information, What's On entries, and professional resources.
We've applied the identity across a range of print materials – from calling-cards and postcards to posters and banners – to promote the website and what it can do.
As well as the functionality mentioned above, the website acts as an archive for outdoor dance projects (which took place in the region as part of the Cultural Olympiad), so holds a wealth of resources for dance professionals. These resources include Collections, which bring together all content related to a particular project; written description, image gallery, dance companies/agencies, venue/s etc. Great for future reference.
But our favourite bit of new functionality is the ability to 'Love'.
When you click the heart-shaped icon to 'Love' a particular event/company/individual, it gets added to your personal profile page – meaning you can curate and share a collection of your favourite dance stuff. Neat!
To help promote the website, we built a clever email system which 'automagically' populates templates of different email lists – regular members, professionals, dance companies etc. – with relevant content.
These emails can, of course, be manually altered before they're sent – but the system just makes putting them together an awful lot quicker and easier.
And we made a Facebook app, making it super-easy for people to share West Midlands Dance content across their social network. Phew.
So, whether you want to find a choreographer to collaborate with, or see a world-renowned company's performance, it's all on www.westmidlandsdance.com.
Now – go and 'Love' some dance!