Gone But Not Forgotten

Hello, you've landed on DATA eh? - Open Data Toronto's original blog space for data discussions. This is not an active blog at the moment but legacy posts are still here. Have a read ... you can still provide comments.

Monday, April 26, 2010

While away I found some things "refurbished"

NOTE: This is content from the web re:Brand posts going back to November 2010. We have kept the re:Brand posts as a legacy archive but, on a go forward basis as of October, 2011, the new DATA eh? content takes over this space.

Hi all ... back in business after some r n' r and discovered a few refurbished city websites while away.

QuinteWest presents a vibrant site on my first reaction to landing on the page. Note, they offer an eServices tab along with the traditional "City Hall", "Residents", "Business" and "Visitor" tabs.

We're definitely going to add more tabs - users have specific interests they want pulled out from areas such as residents.

Charlottetown offers a message by the Mayor as you land on the home page. Personally, I like this touch though I suspect many  web "heads" may very well pan it.

The Town of Middleton  also offers a Mayor's message too but in text form. I see they have a "Barrier Free Resource Centre" thing happening on their home page giving import to accessibility.

I guess the question of the day would be how long do you keep the front page alive with this content.  How new is new ... especially once you've been there?

All three sites certainly look fresh - I think our front page (new as of last year) conveys a similar freshness but the insides of our site are only getting sorted out now.

We're sorting out for two purposes: the introduction of content management tools and preparation of a beta "labs" space where we can try out some of the new ideas before we say the re:Brand is done.  That's a significant difference between our planning and their launches -  we're going to present some ideas first before solidifying the site.


Love to hear what aspects of these sites you like and would like to see toronto.ca adopt. Tell us what you think ...

I also found this lovely promo video that knocked me out - The Pomegrante phone - a nice twist of promo for another "down east" place ... check it @ http://www.pomegranatephone.com/

We'd love to incorporate some humour into promo for our site changes - or aspects of the site changes - but wonder how it would go over.  You can comment about that too if you like.

Bookmark and Share


Patrick said...

Oh man, that pomegranate phone campaign is actually pretty ingenious -- They're actually TARGETING the sort of tech-loving crowd who are almost categorically in the position to spread word -- ie. people like YOU. I wouldn't say it has so much to do with being funny, but just the fact that you, the guy running the blog with hits from all over the world, thought it was funny.

The person in charge of getting that campaign launched totally had to be familiar with Malcolm Gladwell's The Tipping Point, because they definitely understand social connectors:

While it's hard to say whether it was successful, its heart's in the right place -- A good campaign, web-based or not, should feed the connectors.

Keith from the TO web re:Brand team said...

@Patrick ... such an Interesting take on this. I heard about the Pomegrante from one of the team managers here (shout out to Trish Garner) when we were riffing on apps - in particular, a toaster that could do a whole lot of other things than just make toast.

Humour is as humour does - a bit dangerous for governments to do in the event some may find offensive but you are correct in that it will appeal to a certain demographic. Once it goes viral ... there you go. Guilty (hopefully in a positive sense) as charged.