Bothwell Marketing Creative Services for Law Firms

1.  Web Development Process

The following is an overview of our typical project design and development process:

i  Brand Discovery/Brand Research
Our process begins with research and analysis aimed at producing the key marketing messages and concepts that the website will communicate. We work with the client’s internal project team to explore the structural, functional and content changes desired and to establish criteria and preferences with regard to style, color and format of the new site. We discuss the various audiences who will use the site and address specific needs with regard to content and navigation accessibility. We conduct internal meetings/interviews with representatives of the firm to explore how the firm’s Brand is currently perceived and how the firm wants to change and or build on the current Brand position.

ii  Creative Design
The Brand research work we initially conduct will provide us with the key information needed to develop strategic visual and textual marketing messages. Creative design is the first step in building the website. However, design is closely linked and driven in part by the site’s anticipated structure.

iii  Website Structure
One of the most important keys to successfully implementing a web site is to establish an organized information architecture or “site map” prior to the initiation of design and programming. Organizing site content in a concise hierarchy speeds the development process and ultimately results in a web site that is user-friendly and easily searchable..
A site map detailing the various sections and pages of the website and describing the functionality of the CMS will be created, reviewed and approved by the client prior to building out the structural portion of the website. The goal is to define and approve this structure before programming and development is begun. Significant changes in structure or functionality in the middle, and particularly toward the end, of the project can be costly.

iv  Design
First Round:
Creative will offer multiple (2/3) design concept strategies including home page and attorney page design concepts. These approaches will also be developed in multiple (2/3) color combinations. First round design is presented in person at your office. We may go through several iterations of design refinement while integrating client comments and requests. We have budgeted for three rounds of creative review and changes. Design review typically occurs by means of an on-line interactive meeting.

Second Round:
When the preferred design is approved, the secondary pages (sections) of the website are designed to coordinate. At this point we will also be sourcing images for the site, typically through stock image libraries and/or commissioned photography. These secondary pages will also be reviewed with the clients, also through on-line meetings until each main section page is approved. We have budget two rounds of changes for these secondary pages.

Third Round:
All unique pages and main section lead pages are designed and approved. All images and graphic elements are in place and approved. A final review and approval is conducted prior to building HTML pages.

v  Build - HTML pages
All approved pages and graphic elements are converted into HTML pages to be implemented by developers to create a website that is now operational and can be viewed by the client by means of a link which will be named in a version of the following format: lawfirm.bothwip2013.com. This link will be available to the client throughout the project.
This operational website will not yet be linked to the CMS system or data from the live database. At this stage content will be limited demo content.

vi  Building out the Database and Content Management System
The build out phase of the project integrates design with the database structure and the CMS system. The Content Management System “Content Builder” has been developed over several years by Bothwell Marketing. It is customized specifically for law firms and offers many of the same keying and editing tools as “Word." Managing web content is easy because no HTML skills are necessary, so individuals can be trained very quickly. The CMS allows the firm’s staff to maintain “dynamic” portions of the web site via a password protected control panel, usually posted to www.yourdomainname.com/contentbuilder.
The content of the website is housed within a MySQL database structure which is flexible and scalable. Sections and subsections may be added internally using the CMS system and all content is editable also through the CMS.
Toward the end of the project, internal staff will be trained with regard to the functions of the CMS. A User Guide will also be provided upon completion of the project together with a style sheet and image library. The objective is to have internal staff comfortable with Content Builder and working on edits and content management before the site is launched. so they are ready to manage the site immediately upon launch.
Bothwell staff will upload existing approved content and new content and have budgeted for three batches of content upload. Ongoing editing and addition of content will be accomplished by the firm’s staff upon completion of training. Bothwell staff will not support daily and ongoing continuous edits to content.

vii  Project Flow
The website design and development process is comprised of layers, as illustrated below:



viii  Quality Assurance and Testing
The development of a new website is a process. Testing, debugging and minor fixes are part of that process. As the client’s staff learn to work with the website, editing and manipulating content, we discover any functions or features that require adjustment. This is a necessary part of the development function and one that is budgeted for under QA. Our staff also tests websites across various browser platforms to ensure the site is working correctly.

ix  Mobile Phone and Portable Device Solution
One of the biggest changes on-line is the huge number of internet users accessing websites from their mobile phones and portable devices. With more and more people using smart phones, iPhones, Android and Blackberries to access the internet, it is important that the firm’s website be accessible to those clients and potential clients who rely on these devices.
Bothwell Marketing will design and implement a mobile web solution that integrates with the firm’s main website. The main purpose of this mobile site will be to provide easy intuitive access to key information such as telephone and fax numbers, driving directions, an email form, and an attorney listing with vcard download capability.
The examples below are typical of the type of solution we would implement. We suggest that not every page of the site needs to be optimized. Although that is certainly possible, it is probably not entirely practical. We believe that key information displayed in a bold and simple format is the most user friendly and useful solution.



2.  Technical information

Content Builder - the CMS system - uses PHP code with a MySQL backend database. Bothwell Marketing’s development environment is on Windows. Staging and production sites are on LINUX servers hosted with Rackspace.

i  Permissions Based Access
Content Builder CMS supports permissions based access. The Administrator can restrict access to certain pages by configuring the roles. Content Builder already has default roles based on the various modules in the system. The Administrator has the ability to change the permissions of these roles. For example, the Administrator can create a new user account and assign a role of “Marketing” so when this user logs into the backend, s/he will have unlimited access. Similarly “Attorneys” role may only have access to the “Attorneys” module in the admin.

ii  Multiple Users and Tracking
Content Builder has the ability to create multiple users. The “Administrator” can login into the system to create and manage additional user accounts. The CMS system can track login activity including the last login date for each user. In addition, the database tables keep track of the each record modified/added date together with user information.

iii  Open Source Platform
Bothwell sites are coded in PHP, a completely open-source product that has been used by web developers since 1995. There are literally millions of websites built on the PHP platform. PHP is used as the programming language on 75% of all Web servers. Web sites created using PHP include Wikipedia and Facebook.
Website management systems written in PHP include Wordpress, Joomla and Drupal. In essence these systems simplify PHP by offering templates and modular functionality. However, this can also limit the flexibility and customization options available in native PHP. In practice, developing a website will always require some degree of customization to certain features. Content Builder was designed by Bothwell Marketing specifically for law firms. There is a core to our platform that is an excellent match for the needs of law firms while retaining the full tools of native PHP for flexibility in adding customized features.

iv  Programming Environment
The programming environment for building and hosting Bothwell websites requires the following technologies. If the site is not hosted with Bothwell Marketing then Client should check with their hosting service to ensure compatible technology. Client is responsible for ensuring the hosting environment is compatible.

Ubuntu v6.06, Debian Sarge or RedHat (RHEL4 or Fedora).
PHP v5.1.4 DEV
PDO & PDO_MYSQL (at least version 1.0.2)
MySQL v5.x (Version no. does not matter)
Apache mod_rewrite is turned on.

This “open source” environment is scalable, widely supported, and typically provided by all reputable hosting services.

v  Site Hosting
Bothwell Marketing is an approved reseller of Rackspace hosting services. Rackspace Cloud is the cloud hosting division of Rackspace, an industry leader that currently manages over 40,000 servers and devices for customers all over the world. Clients hosting with Bothwell Marketing access the advanced architecture powering the Rackspace hosting solution which uses groups of high-performance, network attached storage devices to reliably serve every web page, and image. Inside each storage device, drives are mirrored to each other in a RAID configuration to create a first level of redundancy. And, as a final precautionary measure, all data on the system is automatically backed up on a repeating schedule. Rackspace Cloud creates back-ups of data on a nightly basis. Its purpose is for disaster recovery. If for any reason a storage node were to crash, backups are there to replace any lost data. In addition daily backups are scheduled by Bothwell Marketing to back up to the Bothwell managed server. The Linux side of the Rackspace platform is built on Red Hat Enterprise Server. The Windows platform runs on Windows 2008 and IIS 7.

vi  SEO and Site Maintenance
As part of our hosting agreement we provide google analytics and other performance analytics tools. Basic SEO – registration with search engines, XML site map and page titles for main pages are included in this proposal. More extensive SEO support can be provided post launch of the website. There are many analytical tools available to clients from basic google analytics to custom software. During the development of the site we work with clients to determine the best ongoing program for their needs.