Building Digital Authority in Commercial Interiors
With an already enviable reputation in the Commercial Interiors community, the Mix Group had an ambition to improve and amplify their online presence.
Their covetable monthly ‘coffee table’ print publication had worked hard over the years to build loyal following amongst Architects, Specifiers, Contractors, Interior Designers, and Manufacturers, whilst becoming a respected voice and authority on industry news and opinion.
Aside from the publishing and content business, the group also had an event management arm, notorious for pulling together some of the most eagerly anticipated events in the industry such as the Mixology Awards, MDC and Mix Inspired.
The challenge was to pull the Group’s strengths together into one authoritative digital platform. Primarily capable of representing the best commercial interiors editorial in the UK to a community that is highly critical of design, whilst managing a event booking hub.
We knew that a publishing site, by its nature, had to generate advertising revenue but equally our audience were time-poor, information hungry and very visual creatures, that had little patience for an invasion of unwanted ad interruptions.
Our brief was to present content with style, authority and class in a direct, consumable yet commercial way. Work therefore began with the audience to understand expectations, online behaviours, search intent and content consumption patterns. Navigational scenarios and wireframes were then developed and tested with various sample users from the target audience to map journeys to specific user requirements.
From a technical perspective we also assessed integration potential with magazine publishing and CRM software, choosing one that enabled Mix Interiors to streamline editorial processes, establish a supplier and customer CRM and begin a programme of effective digital communications.
Promoted content planning was key to the commercial viability of the site, with native advertising preferred over traditional display in order to differentiate away from banner led competitors. Company profiles, promoted and featured content was creatively and seamlessly woven into the framework, protecting the sites distinct editorial focus whilst allowing partners to serve their audience with timely, relevant and engaging promoted content.
For the first time, the Group had a central hub that brought together its previously fragmented digital footprint. The events arm of the business was now integrated into the new site but retained an element of its own identity using ‘change of pace’ creative. Site functionality was extended to personal account creation, enabling magazine subscription management and event registration, alongside a bookmarking function where articles are curated for later consumption.
In the 5 months since launch, users have risen by 84% compared to the previous year, crucially bounce rates decreased by 26%. UX and journey testing had also paid off with an increase of 64% in pages per session and 91% in dwell time. Anecdotally the positive feedback started rolling in from clients and Mix Group couldn’t be happier with their new site.
Managing Director Martin Mongan said, “The early results are nothing shy of outstanding, both in terms of visibly and creatively raising our digital profile, but also statistically improving our online performance and engagement.
The numbers speak for themselves as do the glowing reports from our readership. The platform is flexible, scalable and easy to work with and has given us the impetus to ‘go again’ with our online commercial ambitions.”
“The early results are nothing shy of outstanding, both in terms of visibly and creatively raising our digital profile, but also statistically improving our online performance and engagement. The numbers speak for themselves as do the glowing reports from our readership.”