- web app
- related content
- low carbon
- annual report
23 December 2011
Our work: News and Views adds context and interactivity to Centrica’s communications
Senior Consultant | Read all Andrew's posts
Those of you who visit Centrica’s web site may have noticed that the media section recently underwent a substantial overhaul. The relaunched section, now called 'News and Views', replaces and combines both the former Media and Centrica views sections to create a powerful communications platform where users can find all of Centrica’s updates and viewpoints in one place – whether they are news releases, blogs, consultation responses, videos or speeches.
News and Views landing page
Centrica wanted to put their communications in context – particularly important when they involve complex and often emotive topics, such as energy pricing – by making sure users could easily see and find relevant content when viewing a news release, or a blog, or any type of content in the section. We also wanted to give users a choice in how they consume the content on the Centrica site, enabling them to drill down into content by topic, as well as have the chance to communicate with the company. All of this needed to happen without getting in the way of the user who just wants to read a news release.
We've made a video showing the section in action (best viewed full screen):
To make the section work, we created a set of tags which have been used across all of the news, blogs, videos and ‘Perspectives’ (a collection of speeches, press articles, responses and position statements), to enable users to filter content by subject. This also means that related content can be displayed alongside any asset or list of assets, eg news releases, giving users the opportunity to browse through content that they are interested in, without having to go looking for it. Importantly for Centrica, all of this is automated via content tagging in their content management system, reducing their workload while delivering an intuitive user experience.
The section also houses a set of ‘Hot topics’. This part of the section provides a natural home for information that Centrica want to publish around topics that may be attracting a lot of user interest at a particular moment. It gives Centrica space to provide the facts as well as the company’s own viewpoint on the issues. Other content, such as contacts, images, logos, download kit and the glossary have all been put together in the Resources section.
Finally we’ve kept the social media integration that was a part of the old Views section, with Centrica’s corporate Twitter feed being drawn into the site, and links out to their presence on Facebook, YouTube and LinkedIn. Centrica will be using those platforms to direct people back to the News and Views section to engage in the energy debate.
What do you think of the section? Do you like this new approach to a media section, with greater context and related content? We’d love to hear your views so please let us know via the comments below or email me, especially if you have any questions on how it all works.
Any statements made in these blog posts are the views of the blogger and do not necessarily represent the views of The Group.