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Case Study: Impact Dance’s website journey

Marketing and Communications Officer, Clara Cowen, takes us on Impact Dance’s journey with the Digital Culture Network in a case study from January 2021.

Screengrab of Impact Dance's website

About the organisation

The central focus of London theatre company Impact Dance is to empower young people of diverse backgrounds through hip-hop dance training, mentoring, and national and international performances. For 25 years, Impact Dance  has had a central focus on empowering and engaging young people aged 11-19 and of diverse backgrounds, particularly those considered ‘hard to reach’ and ‘under-privileged’.  The company has recently moved into their new home on Shaftesbury Avenue in London’s West End.

As Impact Dance’s Marketing and Communications Officer, I manage all marketing activity for the organisation, from social media content and strategy to press releases. Additionally, I am responsible for the design and development of key promotional materials and resources for Impact Dance.

What did you want to achieve?

Last year I was appointed project manager for the redesign of Impact Dance’s website. As 2020 was our 25th anniversary year, we were desperate to upgrade our site to capture the depth of our work at this important milestone.

What led you to contact the Digital Culture Network?

This was the first time I had formally gone through this process, and I had no idea where to begin! I didn’t know who we should be contacting or what information we would be expected to give them. Our CEO had already made contact with one of the Digital Culture Network’s Tech Champions, and they recommended we contact website specialist Roberta Beattie (previous Tech Champion for websites), which felt like the perfect place to start.

How did you do it?

After we were introduced to Roberta via email we had an initial one-hour consultation that clarified the entire process of selecting a website design agency for our project. Roberta gave us a brilliant amount of advice and valuable resources which allowed me to easily write our website brief. We spoke twice more in the following month for ongoing guidance regarding the brief, contacting and short-listing of agencies, and key points to identify during interviews. During this time, based on my positive experience with Roberta, I also reached out to receive advice from Tech Champions for social media, email marketing, and data analytics & insight.

What happened?

After the initial invaluable guidance from Roberta, we launched Impact Dance’s brand new website and are delighted with the results, developed by Dave Hallett. We were able to choose a developer with confidence who was, without doubt, the best fit for our vision and values as an organisation. Entering 2021 with a new website that encapsulates our 25 years of work has given us an extra surge of confidence and pride as we move into our new home on Shaftesbury Avenue.

I have also personally learned more about considering user journeys and the use of data analytics and insight throughout our website.

What is your advice to others who might be considering reaching out to the Digital Culture Network?

As an organisation we cannot recommend the Digital Culture Network enough, and the Tech Champions are an amazing resource that we can’t believe we have access to free of charge! Every Tech Champion I had contact with was so friendly and open to any questions I had, regardless of how simple. They follow up conversations quickly with relevant and helpful resources and stay in touch to see how you’re getting on. Any organisation that has access to the Tech Champions – use them!

Clara Cowen
Marketing and Communications Officer

Twitter – @impactdanceuk
Facebook – @impactdanceuk
Instagram – @impactdanceuk

Before and after gallery

The current Digital Culture Network Tech Champion for websites is Andy Leitch.

What’s next?

The Digital Culture Network is here to support you and your organisation. Our Tech Champions can provide free 1-2-1 support to all arts and cultural organisations who are in receipt of, or eligible for, Arts Council England funding. If you need help or would like to chat with us about any of the advice we have covered above, please get in touch. Sign up for our newsletter below and follow us on Twitter @ace_dcn for the latest updates.

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