You Only Get One Chance to Make a First Impression
When we were tapped to build the O’Malley for President website we knew that we needed to produce something that would make a good first impression. Martin O’Malley was set to launch his bid for President and it would be the first time that many people would be learning about the former Governor. With a tight timeline and a long list of requirements, we built a website that combined beautiful design with innovative functionality. The site is featured on Google’s Politics & Elections Campaign Playbook as an example of a “well-designed website.”
For many people across the country Martin O’Malley’s announcement for President would be the first time they would be introduced to the former mayor and Governor. While this upped the ante for the website launch, LPS made sure that the new site would be ready to handle any and all traffic while maximizing conversions and online donations.
Working with campaign leadership we designed a website that reflected Martin O’Malley’s brand and served as a platform to tell his story. Using a balanced mix of content we produced a website that outlined Martin O’Malley’s leadership experience, record of accomplishments, and vision for the future. We used photos and video to convey the candidate in his leadership roles and easily readable content pages that listed Governor O’Malley’s extensive record and detailed policy proposals. The website also used best practices to capture supporter information and provide donors with a seamless user experience. The result was an engaging website that also told a compelling story.
Website design matters. However, design isn’t just limited to color selection and layout. A bad design could make the difference between a visitor bouncing from your website or completing an online donation.
Given the site’s dynamic content and the significant amount of traffic that it would receive from mobile devices we designed a responsive website. This means that the website’s text and images changed based on a user’s device, whether it was a desktop, tablet, or smartphone. This was especially useful as for when the campaign drove traffic to action and donation pages or when media coverage linked to campaign policy proposals.
Campaign websites must meet a long list of functional requirements and O’Malley for President’s website was no exception. The advantage is that many of these requirements are similar across campaign websites. While there were several requirements there are a few that are always a top priority, including the ability to:
- sign up for email updates;
- sign up to volunteer; and
We developed the website on WordPress and could have easily used plug-ins to create forms and collect the information locally. However, the campaign needed to have its data collected centrally located and simultaneously available to the digital, field, and finance teams. There are a number of CRMs built specifically for this purpose. The challenge was integrating the campaign’s chosen CRM to provide users with a seamless user experience. Using a similar design and integration tools we created landing templates that could be used for a variety of forms. In addition to carrying over the responsive design, the templates were optimized for conversions by removing the navigation so that users would remain on the page.