Marina’s commitment to active listening, coupled with responsiveness to our needs based on the options she provided, helped us learn new and innovative ways to expand our web presence, while preparing us to manage the new platform now and into the future. In the end, our expectations were exceeded at every turn, and she made the process fun and engaging! We absolutely recommend Marina for your next web / design / development / creative project and look forward to collaborating again in the near future.
~ Jack Newman
About the Project
Unite-One is a Seattle-based musical group that fuses raggae, hip hop, funk, and afro beat. They have been around since 2011… as had their website. I collaborated with the band to create a brand new site, update their visual identity, and get them set up with email marketing.
Unite-One needed a website that would not only be easy for them to independently maintain, but would also allowed visitors to stream and download music, view a dynamic events calendar, purchase merchandise, and sign up for an email list.
Creating the Website
Understanding the Audience
After attending Unite-One shows, meeting fans, and speaking with band members, I created a couple of user personas to better understand the mindset of the people who will likely be visiting the Unite-One website.
Jason represents show producers and promoters. He’s coming to the website to determine whether or not he’s interested in booking Unite-One for an upcoming show.
Mapping the Website Content
Considering and balancing what website visitors will be looking for with what the band would like them to find most easily, I mapped the content of the website.
Creating the Website Skeleton
Once the website navigation was in place, I created the initial sketch of the website, drafting where different content would likely end up.
Above you’ll see wireframes of the website’s two main pages: the home page and the “Our Story” page represented with mid-fidelity wireframes.
Defining a Visual Identity System
Unite-One had a general sense of their brand, but we decided to hone in on it. I created a couple of visual design systems for them to choose from before moving ahead to the website design phase.
Designing the Website
After determining the band’s new visual identity, I applied the fresh branding to the website mockups that I created for the band to review. In applying the colors, I did my best to stay true to the band’s genre without being too predictable.
Developing the Website
In creating the website, I used popular and well-supported plugins such as the Events Calendar and WooCommerce to add a great deal of functionality to the site without adding too much complexity. I also used the Divi theme, which allows the band to update the site with an intuitive WYSIWYG interface.
With the new website and email newsletter in place, Unite One has been set up to not only make a better impression on their audience and potential producers, but they’re also now able to make money online by selling merchandise and electronic downloads of their music.