What was the scope of their involvement?
RainCastle redesigned our website and integrated its backend CMS. They had also created our first website, which used HTML.
We worked with another company for the rebranding effort. The company we’ve used for the rebranding has more experience in the golfing industry. We went to them because we needed to finish the site on an aggressive timeline. We connected RainCastle with that team to ensure that they would be comfortable working together. This was an essential consideration for the project.
The next step was involving RainCastle in the rebranding process. They were not responsible for the logo creation and other branding activities, but they participated in all our calls and provided insights into our brand positioning and design elements. The rebranding agency came up with a logo suite and style guide. Based on those, RainCastle quickly came up with website design concepts for us to review. Once we decided on a specific design, they built our WordPress platform.
We also went through a website architecture review process. They outlined all the variations for our site’s pages, and came up with unique solutions for our problems. One of those was managing a huge volume of archived data from the previous site.
They also came up with a solution for our backend member login portal, which is managed by another company. Their work elevated the aesthetic of that website, which had been quite poor before. A data management company is not a design company, so their product was not very appealing. RainCastle created an overlay page for that company’s system. They came up with the design and functionalities of that page, and integrated it into a subdomain to eliminate any technical issues. Now users don’t realize that they’re going from one website to another.
We have a “Find a Club” link that takes users out of our main mask-all server and into a subdomain run by a third party. RainCastle designed all those pages and gave the partner company everything they needed.
They also designed an icon section for registered members, which replaced the previous text version. RainCastle invented an extensive suite of unique icons for all layers of data provided by our organization.
We did not request advertising services from them, but we did ask for a complete SEO analysis. We had never done that before, so their team educated us. Given the old-school nature of our site, we hadn't used SEO for many years. They emphasized the importance of SEO, explained why and how we should implement it, and created a sitemap. We analyzed that document page by page and added the suggestions to the site.
They also worked on the redirect links from our old site, making sure that there wouldn’t be any dead links.
The company we’ve used for the rebranding has more experience in the golfing industry. We went to them because we needed to finish the site on an aggressive timeline.
RainCastle did work on our “Brand Story” page. We had an idea of how we wanted it to look, but they helped us integrate a video and generally make it more interactive.
What is the team composition?
I’ve worked with RainCastle’s vice president and their owner for many years. Both were present for every call we’ve had from the start of the project. John was in charge of helping with site architecture and backend solution, while Paul was involved with the branding and overall design layout.
Once we got into the development phase, I worked closely with their senior web developer from November until launch. I also worked with two SEO specialists from their team.
How did you come to work with RainCastle?
We had an existing relationship with them, which was a key factor in the decision. We didn’t want that to be the only reason for our choice, so we went through an extensive vetting process. Our original goal was to find one company for the rebranding and website development, as that seemed most efficient. However, RainCastle convinced us that they would have no problem working with another company. They had a good history of working with other groups bring projects together. They were willing to serve as project managers and alter their original proposal. That, along with their proposed solutions for our technology platforms, set them apart.
They also had a good knowledge of how we operate. John has taken a lot of interest over the years in learning what our business is all about. The fact that he could hit the ground running and understand our method of working with golf clubs and individual golfers—along with the structure of our backend data—was a huge benefit.
We looked at different companies, with the original goal of selecting a single partner. The rebranding company could have done the job of the web developer, but RainCastle established itself as our web development partner since they could work with another group and stick to an extremely aggressive timeline around the holiday season.
How much have you invested with them?
The cost of their work was $35,000.
What is the status of this engagement?
The rebranding process started in May 2017, but we onboarded RainCastle in August and began development in November. The site was launched in January 2018.
We brought them in later because we first needed to come up with a new name, mission, and logo for our organization. We had to do a lot of work before RainCastle could start developing the site.