Identity & Design
In 2013, Fort Lauderdale Beach was going through a second renaissance with the emergence of world-class hotels and high-profile events taking place on its shores. Understanding the visitor base was diverse, and the area had forecasted big plans for the future, the destinations marketing and website presence needed to reflect its greatest assets – an easy access, close to everything, relaxed and laid back destination – a comfortable home away from home, with a beach for a backyard.
In June 2013 a strategic partnership was formed with the Fort Lauderdale Beach Business Improvement District manager, to develop and manage the branding for their destination portal website, MyFortLauderdaleBeach.com. Under the scope of service I was to initially provide social media marketing and website management. However, after an initial assessment and review, a proposal was presented to redesign the logo and website to better reflect and represent the Fort Lauderdale Beach destination.
A new logo was developed utilizing elements of the original logo [top left], but with a more modern font and color palette with established brand guidelines (middle left).
Likewise, the website also went through a full redesign [top middle] using a pre-designed, responsive WordPress template. In starting with an existing template we saved a significant amount on programming fees, and reduced the turnaround time by 6-8 weeks. By selecting a responsive template, it also eliminated the need to build a separate mobile app or mobile website, as the technology inherently recognizes the device and configures to the viewable screen size. This was especially useful for visitors who may be using a phone or tablet while vacationing or in the area. Furthermore, because the template was also build using WordPress as its engine, the SEO qualities were strong and no programming skills were needed to manage and update the site.
The new website launched in late 2013. Nine months post launch, and without an advertising or marketing budget, users and viewership rose 400% monthly to an average of 12,000+ users per month. A refresh of the website was implemented in 2015. We are taking it through its fourth now in 2018.
In 2017 the logo received a slight makeover (bottom left), extending the full domain out, placing the color emphasis on Fort Lauderdale Beach, and adding depth by wrapping the Wave Wall around the pillar. At the same time, the website home page (bottom middle /right) was redesigned with icons just below the larger image slideshow to provide mobile users, who not outnumbered desktop users 2:1, an visual navigation in addition to the traditional drop down menu.
Where can I even start? In September 2014, I was awarded a contract by the City of Fort Lauderdale BID to manage MyFortLauderdaleBeach.com. When you go from maintaining to managing the presence for a destination it can (and did) take on a life of its own. From two social profiles to seven, a monthly newsletter, print collateral, experiential events, and hosting online sweepstakes and contests – the newest addition to engagement is a weekly Rooftop Rendezvous Facebook Live broadcast.