Just a quick note — if your site has been rebranded and you’re interested in viewing web statistics for your pages, let us know. We can give you access to the analytics — all you need to provide us with is the email associated with your Google Account. (If you don’t have a Google Account, it’s free and easy to get one.)
Over the past few weeks, we’ve seen even more URI web sites rebranded — departments are working hard with their content and their templates!
Human Science and Services
Soon you’ll see additional offerings — look for University College, the College of Business, and the College of Nursing, as well as Summer Program, Career Services, Administration, Student Affairs, and more.
As always, if you’re in a department or unit that is ready to rebrand, let us know. Send email to Kerri Hicks at firstname.lastname@example.org to get started.
There are more than twenty URI web sites that have been successfully branded with templates from the Department of Communications and Marketing. These include:
College of Engineering
College of Arts and Sciences
Office of Public Programming and Events
Division of University Advancement
and many more. Quite a few other sites are in progress, as well. To all the webmasters on campus who have rebranded their sites, thank you for all your hard work and collaboration! And to the webmasters we have yet to work with, we’re looking forward to helping with your site, too. Get in touch with our office when you’re ready to go!
We published our first branded web pages at the beginning of the Fall semester (2008). That included the home page, most ‘top-level’ centrally managed pages, and a few other high-traffic pages. Since then, our priority has been working with the colleges to get their main college sites branded. We’ve made good progress with the College of Arts and Sciences (which has already published many branded pages), the College of Engineering, and the College of Pharmacy, and have started work with the College of the Environment and Life Sciences, as well as the College of Human Science and Services. University College is coming up next, and we will then talk with the College of Nursing, the Feinstein Providence Campus, the Graduate School of Oceanography, and the College of Business (not necessarily in that order) :-).
What does it mean to have a ‘branded’ site at URI? Most obviously, it means having the brand look-and-feel, with the appropriate logos, banners, fonts, colors, etc. But just as important (if not more important) is the content and information architecture of those sites.
A content analysis will look at what information the site already has, and what is missing. Sometimes, that means looking at other colleges at URI, or peer institutions, to see what kind of information they’re publishing. It also may mean reconsidering how that information is organized — the “information architecture”. How is information grouped? What are the main navigation links (on the left side of the page), and where do they take you? Are there too many links, or too few? If a user comes to your home page, can they find the most general and most requested information? Are you linking to information from the right places? Who is your audience? Do you need an ‘intranet’ for certain users?
Working together to answer all these questions will help to create a site that can grow as your content grows, be easy to navigate and maintain, and remain viable for a long time.
We wanted to create a space where we, the folks in the Department of Communications and Marketing who are working on the web branding initiative, could keep in touch with the web publishers at URI. We expect to post general information, timelines, helpful hints, and anything else you might request.
Your first question may be, “Why isn’t this blog branded?” It’s a good and fair question. We figured that we’d rather spend the time getting more live, user-facing sites out of the gate, than tweaking a WordPress theme, so we’ve decided to stay pretty generic for now. Please stay tuned for more to come, including an announcement regarding face-to-face web publisher meetings at the Kingston Campus, beginning soon.
And lastly, you may wonder, who are “we”? Currently, two people in the Department of Communications and Marketing are working directly on the web project. John “Sam” Peterson, the director of New Media, and Kerri Hicks, the senior web developer, are the two people managing this blog. However, we’ll be reporting in from all relevant fronts.
Feel free to comment, say hello, and please keep reading!