The Caroline of Brunswick pub in Brighton approached Aimée Creative in 2014 as they were unhappy with the functionality of their current website. During the Fringe Festival in May, owner Cliff was finding posting events online time consuming and repetitive, and was looking for a new system. He was also keen to have a website that would be more ‘designed’ and that would better reflect the feel of the pub and its clientele; a mixture of students, rockers and metallers and those wanting a good stand up show – or just your average Joe wanting a pint and something to eat.
After talking with Cliff and getting familiar with his requirements it was concluded that WordPress might be the best fit for his budget. It was important that Cliff would feel comfortable using WordPress and so a demo site was set up for him to edit and get familiar with. Once clear that WordPress’s user-friendly interface appealed to him, I set to work finding the additional software (known as a plug-in) that would add the specific event functionality that was needed for the new website. One was eventually found that ticked most of the boxes and after careful consideration Cliff concluded WordPress was the route that he wanted to go. We then started the process of planning the layout and navigation of the site (called the wireframe) and began discussing the feel and design that Cliff was after.
One of the first things to consider for the new site was the absence of any photography. I demonstrated several examples of websites to Cliff to show how the use of good photography (or lack of it) could often be seen to make or break the appeal of a website. He agreed that it would be worth investing in a photoshoot and Toms Udis was recommended for photographer. Toms style of photography was deemed a good fit for the pub and the shoot was booked in to take place shortly after a quick pub refurbishment, to ensure that it would be looking at its best.
Although the pub was known as Brighton’s rock and alternative pub, Cliff did not want to go too heavy with the feel of the site but he did want it to look ‘designed’. Cliff was particularly keen to have some custom illustrations. Inspiration came from some of the art in the pub, including the famous three headed dog statue above the bar. The final illustrations were used not only in the header/background but were subtly incorporated all over the site in order to pull together the look of the new site. The illustrations were also used in the design of some printed drinks posters for the website and pub walls.
The colour of the website needed to reflect its existing logo and strong brand colours, without being overwhelming. Red was selected as the main colour of the site, while white and black text would provide contrast on the page. Icons were also designed to break up the red background and provide interest to the page.
The final photos from the shoot with Toms were used all over the site, and formed the main background giving an instant showcase of the pub. An Instagram account was also set up and all photos tagged and uploaded. These were then pulled over from Instagram into the gallery page of the website. This feature enabled Cliff and his staff to easily take phone photos and upload them to the site via Instagram. They could also search for other photos of the pub and add these to the gallery page by simply liking them on Instagram. and tagging also provided potential for building followers, and marketing the pub online – a simple weekly plan and tagging proposal was recommended to help Cliff build his brand online.
Visit the Caroline of Brunswick Website: