The Big Ten Network, an American sports network focused on coverage of collegiate sports, recently partnered with StatenWeb, a web development and design firm in Staten Island, to redesign and rebuild their website. In a conversation with Mat Gargano, StatenWeb’s founder, Chris Malcolm, Director of Digital Content at Big Ten Network, discussed the process of redesigning their site with StatenWeb and beyond.
What was your biggest challenge before the redesign/rebuild?
Our biggest challenge was doing a complete makeover but shifting the site from an editorial site to more of a hub that links to (and features) content in other places. It had to have enough on it but not so much that we needed to maintain it 24/7. My team at BTN has shifted to producing content on other platforms, not BTN.com. But we still need a site that represents the TV network and a sprawling array of digital content in many places.
How did that challenge make you feel?
I knew we could do it so long as our web developer and designer understood it. It was my job to explain it to them in a way that could drive design and the toolset. If we had had a web team that was hard set on THEIR idea of what BTN.com should be, this would not have worked.
What changed after the StatenWeb’s rebuild?
First off, the workflow is streamlined. It’s easy to make changes on BTN.com without taking too much time. And while it’s early, we haven’t seen a drastic drop in visitors – but then driving visitors to BTN.com was never the mission. Our popular TV schedule looks and works better, our promotion of our other initiatives is stronger, and we can feature our social media work way better than before. StatenWeb listened and followed through.
What specific results can you share?
It’s too early but we know already that there is less maintenance of the site but a far more powerful presence of featured items. The site is clean and fresh. And we know we can point people away in multiple ways, something we’ll be tracking closely in the coming months and years.
What would you say to somebody on the fence about opting to use StatenWeb?
They listen. They will work with you on YOUR idea but they will also offer other options you may not have considered. They are timely and cost efficient, which is always great. But beyond that, they truly listen to the needs of their customers.
Anything else to add?
Mat is a pro’s pro. Great communication, great insights, and great work on the technical side. He knows how to get things done and never let anything slip through the cracks. BTN trusted him throughout the process and we were never let down.