SMART (Start Making a Reader Today)

Increasing Literacy in Oregon’s Children

SMART (Start Making a Reader Today) has been Oregon’s largest volunteer-based literacy non-profit for over 20 years. Their unique program pairs adult volunteers with Pre-K through 3rd grade students to provide an hour of one-on-one reading support. Children who aren’t reading at benchmark levels by grade three will face significant educational and life challenges. The SMART program helps boost reading readiness and literacy, preparing those students for academic success.

Inspiring Site Visitors to Get Involved

SMART was seeking a proactive campaign to spread the word about their 20th anniversary, leveraging it as a platform to inspire volunteers and donors to join SMART in helping young children learn to read. They wanted to engage site visitors with informative and interactive information that would increase the frequency of site visits and the duration of each site visit.

Paving the Road to Literacy with Interactive Content

Working closely with SMART we developed a solid brand voice and a set of initiatives to deliver consistent engagement opportunities during their year long anniversary campaign. This was completed in three phases, leading up to a the launch of SMART’s redesigned website. The first phase was devoted to engaging those already interacting with SMART, encouraging them to share their personal experiences with the organization. Next, we implemented sharing mechanisms, to reach beyond their website. This included building a Facebook app, creating a sharing loop and increasing fan count. The final phase featured an interactive infographic that follows a little girl as she grows, using statistics and information that demonstrate how reading plays a crucial role at each stage of development.

Interactive Information Increases User Experience and Overall Site Interactions

The new website provides a variety of helpful resources for visitors, whether they are volunteers, SMART parents, donors, educators, or simply interested in learning more about SMART’s work. Some of the features of the new site include a section on why reading matters with substantial resources for parents, early literacy research, reading tips and book suggestions. The new website also includes an expanded section of pages dedicated to each local SMART office, where visitors can find information specific to SMART in their local communities.

The success of the site redesign is demonstrated by year over year increases in number of site visits, number of pages per visit and average duration of each visit.

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