AmicusHorizon shortlisted for National Award

Posted by Carol Strachan on 12 July 2016

We're delighted to announce that our client AmicusHorizon has been short-listed for this year's National Housing Association Award in the 'Best Digital Marketing' category, in which their new website designed and built by Unified, featured heavily.

Here's how we supported Amicus Horizon’s Channel Shift Strategy by designing and building a new responsive website on Kentico:

About AmicusHorizon

AmicusHorizon is an award winning housing association providing just under 28,000 homes and services to communities across London, Kent and Sussex.  Their mission is to provide good quality, well managed and affordable homes to people on a range of incomes.  

AmicusHorizon can trace its roots back to the 1960’s, a time which saw families on low incomes struggling to survive in poor housing conditions and being exploited by unscrupulous landlords.   The growth of housing associations over the past few decades has alleviated this problem and the role of AmicusHorizon is today much more than just providers of affordable homes.   Showing care and commitment to their residents, AmicusHorizon aim to work with residents of all ages and backgrounds, listening to their needs and providing community assistance in terms of volunteering, training and jobs.

The AmicusHorizon website was set up in 2006 as a result of Amicus Group and Horizon Housing Group merging to become one.   Back then the website had two primary functions; to be a brand building platform showcasing all good news stories and to be a repository of useful information for residents.  

The Business Challenge

As AmicusHorizon grew so too did its website with additions of new features in response to customer and organisational requirements.  However growth was organic and piecemeal and did not account for the growing percentage of mobile users and the use of social media as a way of communicating.  Also, with a large number of complex stakeholders to satisfy, there was a lack of clear segmentation on the website resulting in confused messaging affecting the online user experience.

As the internet has progressed so too has the level of expectation of online users demanding greater interaction and more two way, equal conversation. AmicusHorizon soon discovered their existing website was not up to the task and was structured very much from the organisations perspective rather than a customer centric point of view.

It was therefore clear that the website required a complete overhaul along with their existing GOSS CMS which limited their creativity and choice.  The website needed a new look and feel to showcase their brand along with the addition of improved online services and resource. And as 43% of their customers accessed their website via a mobile device, the new website had to be responsive.

Our Solution

AmicusHorizon were keen to work with a globally recognised CMS provider with a viable roadmap allowing their new site to continually evolve. Having reviewed their goals and objectives, we proposed Kentico as the preferred CMS solution as its ‘out of the box’ functionality, competitive pricing and ease of implementation met with AmicusHorizon’s key requirements and project time-scales.
Following our Insite methodology, we researched AmicusHorizon’s online audience creating customer persona's for each segment along with user journey mapping. Based on their online customer requirements, new site architecture was created and tested using the latest TreeJack software to ensure optimal navigation on both desktop and mobile.
Once AmicusHorizon were satisfied with the navigation, designs were created that reflected the organisations brand with clear segmentation and headings that direct the user along the most appropriate navigational path.
Full development and implementation followed in accordance to AmicusHorizon’s ambitious time-scales with any technical challenges being resolved quickly and effectively by our skilled team of developers.


The Results

Fully supporting their corporate strategy, the new AmicusHorizon website was delivered on time and within budget and successfully launched in January 2016.  Working with Kentico, the new customer centric website is responsive for mobile devices while allowing the digital team at AmicusHorizon to continually improve the design and content so the website is easy to navigate and fulfils the users’ needs.
Each page has clear SMART objectives ensuring AmicusHorizon are true to purpose and on brand with key Corporate messages delivered in a powerful and impactful way.  The website provides intuitive, easy to use and secure online services with relevant information continually updated.
The site is also fully integrated with AmicusHorizon’s other communication channels allowing for important two way conversation with customers and campaign support.

Why choose Unified?

We were selected as the preferred agency due to our great wealth of experience in delivering fully functional websites for the commercial and housing sector.  Following a tendering review, we demonstrated a good fit with AmicusHorizon in terms of culture, values and attitude towards the project.
AmicusHorizon’s new site is another great responsive website designed and built on Kentico which again has proved to be a powerful, easy to use and flexible CMS adapting to corporate demands and customer needs.

Carol Strachan

Carol Strachan

Carol joined the Unified team over three and a half years ago and brought with her a wealth of marketing experience gained over the past 20 years.  During her career, Carol has worked on some really exciting campaigns including the launch of 4G with Three and the Transforming Local Infrastructure project back by the Cabinet and supported by the National Lottery.  With Unified, Carol's role is to ensure everyone knows who we are by shouting about us over social media, writing blogs, creating emails and other marketing communication initiatives.  

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