Monday, 31 October 2011

Montagu – bringing personality to private equity

Montagu considers its website as an essential communication channel to the European Private Equity industry and as such, wanted to develop a new website to distinguish itself from its competitors using the latest technology and design principles. A key part of the brief was to develop the website based on a Content Management System that was easy to use for people with limited experience in web publishing.

Following a competitive pitch against several consultancies, we were awarded the contract and got to work. We undertook a complete site review and redesign, creating the site from scratch, with new content and photography. Once designs were approved we worked in partnership with developer Skyron, choosing to go with a customised version of the open source Umbraco system for its features and ease of use.

An essential part of the brief was that the new site should be flexible and allow for future extension of its functionality as and when required, without the need for a major overhaul. So, along with being mindful of this, we also had to ensure the design facilitated easy navigation, was compatible with Montague’s internal systems and was accessible on tablets and smart phones.

Working closely with both the client and the developers, Ben Jackson, our head of digital, ensured our design team produced designs that were both engaging and functional. The final design features a clean and simple layout, utilising the primary and secondary colours available within Montague’s existing brand identity to make the site visually appealing whilst ensuring it was in line with existing marketing collateral and branding.

Whilst the client and their target audience sit firmly in the corporate arena, we brought a much needed sense of personality to the site, using clear layout and liberal use of their main brand colour. We commissioned a photoshoot of Montague’s staff, allowing us to feature them throughout the site, whilst the animated banner of the homepage showcases both Montague’s key messages and its individuality. The updated news, investment portfolio and video case study sections all further reinforce this professional, yet approachable personality.

Ben adds: "The challenge was to balance the more corporate, conservative look that many of their clients expected with a sense of life and personality that didn't feel fake in any way. Ultimately, more than the current news and latest deals, it was their people who really set them apart and we tried to get this across in the featured photography. We concentrated on keeping the site simple and free of 'clutter', we tried to avoid a homepage that was full of irrelevant content and just focused on what their audience was looking for. Where pages became very content heavy, we used simple drop-down filters to help avoid information overload. Their main brand colour was perfect at really highlighting key areas of the page - whether headlines, stats or important information, we used it to help guide the user around the site."

The site recently went live and is already being updated to include French, German and Polish translations.

You can view the website here:

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