Plot is designed to cater for all stages of a festival lifecycle and is constantly evolving, with new features always being added to improve the user experience. Plot sites can be adapted, changed and updated according to a festival team’s bespoke needs – from sign up forms to banner ads, line-up release info to filterable artist pages, all on a quick to launch and load website that looks beautiful and engages users. Importantly, a Plot festival website is full of features, meaning customers can completely remove any ongoing costs for third party design and development once the website is launched.
Says Plot co-founder Christian Hill, “Plot allows festivals of all sizes and budgets to create a festival website that looks amazing, engages its audience, has all the features a festival marketing team needs, and will be delivered within a week. We are able to do this by removing the bespoke design process, whilst still delivering something unique, powerful and affordable.”
Here we chat with him about the latest in festival website design.
Who is involved with PLOT and what are their skills?
We are a pretty small but talented team that are passionate about festivals and live event experiences. We have some rather amazing designers, developers and product specialists that are bringing our client and internal product dreams to life. Average age is around 30 and everyone is pretty much a festival veteran or been involved in the music industry.
Tell us about some of the work you have done and some of the clients you have done it for
So our Agency , Project Simply has worked on a really board range of amazon festivals including Parklife, Snowbombing, NASS, Love Supreme and Sundown. All of these projects have been real labours of love with lots of custom design and UX to really make them something very interactive and a joy to use. Plot, which is our festival website product is still in live Beta but we’ve already had a number of lovely clients using it including Lightopia, Rhythm and Waves, Africa Oye and Highest Point. All the feedback thus far has been that Plot is an absolute lifesaver and its really changed the way marketing teams are able to manage the festival website.
Tell us about the key things you offer festival clients and what makes festival websites unique?
So we offer our festival clients a complete brand overhaul as well as artworking, ads, posters as well as the creative, build and hosting of the festival website. Festival websites are on face value ecommerce experiences but the level of creativity and interactivity is enhanced because of the nature of the product; an amazing experience. Lots of rich media, amazing creative and a smooth ticket purchase are all critical in acquiring, engaging and converting customers.
How has corona and lockdown affected you and the company?
Yeah I’d be lying if I said it hadn’t and alot of our work dropped off a cliff edge when Covid hit. Since mid July though we’ve seen a small but growing resurgence in clients looking to plan and promote for next year. Positivity abounds at the moment, I just hope its enough to help save lots of core festival service business that have been massively affected.
Have you heard of real nightmare stories from people designing their own festival websites – is that maybe what moved you into the sector?
Yes, there’s nightmare stories everywhere but it can be hard for festivals to know who to turn to as there hasn’t really been clear niche orientated festival web businesses until now. Its like anything though, you learn the rights and wrongs about anything by investing all your time and effort in them, and that’s where we are at now. We can confidently say what works and what doesn’t which is why people choose to work with us time and time again. We didn’t get into the sector because we saw the gap, we just fell in love with the type of work and it grew from there.
What sort of CMS do you use – is it designed for people with little experience and not much time?
So we built Plot as a flexible festival web framework onto a familiar CMS, WordPress. We’ve completely tailored the admin to be simple to use and by people who have no website management experience, but also with the vague familiarity of WordPress. It’s simple to use and is packed full of lots of powerful features that means festival teams can make light work of launching and managing their festival website lifecycle
What are the most important parts of your job to get right for the client?
In this game it’s about setting expectations, enforcing the right process and delivering what we said we would, when we would. We are absolute sticklers for making sure we create the best of everything for our clients which is why we’ve worked with most of our festival clients for years and years.
What are the biggest mistakes other people make when making festival websites?
The biggest mistakes come from not having a properly formed brand and visual guide, as well as not giving enough thought to the user experience and flow of the website for various users, at various entry points, at various stages of the buying cycle. Too much quick design without proper user consideration is a recipe for poor performance.
What do you do aside from festival websites?
About 70% of our work is in festivals and live events but we do have another 30% that we save up for passion projects that really get us going. That said they are normally geared around consumer led experiences as this is the most exciting and creative place for us right now. We’ve been working with Second Home Co working for the past couple of years which is a wonderful , creative and forward thinking company to work alongside.