Behind the brand - Interview with Christian Hill - Plot

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Plot is designed to cater for all stages of a festival lifecycle and is constantly evolving, with new features always being added to improve the user experience. Plot sites can be adapted, changed and updated according to a festival team's bespoke needs - from sign up forms to banner ads, line-up release info to filterable artist pages, all on a quick to launch and load website that looks beautiful and engages users. Importantly, a Plot festival website is full of features, meaning customers can completely remove any ongoing costs for third party design and development once the website is launched. 


Says Plot co-founder Christian Hill, “Plot allows festivals of all sizes and budgets to create a festival website that looks amazing, engages its audience, has all the features a festival marketing team needs, and will be delivered within a week. We are able to do this by removing the bespoke design process, whilst still delivering something unique, powerful and affordable.”


Here we chat with him about the latest in festival website design.

How are you, what good, what's bad?


I'm good, don't want to talk too much about the dreaded C -19 too much but obvs it's had an impact on things. The good generally comprises new ways of working, some time to work on internal projects and a bit of headspace to plan for the future. The bad is just the uncertainty around getting back to what used to be normal as well as knowing that there's lots of people and business in and around music and festivals that are suffering quite badly. 


Has this year been a good or bad one for your professionally? And why?


It's been a mixed bag. We work with lots of festivals and events and many of these projects have not happened for obvious reasons. The financial support we were lucky enough to get as well as having some downtime and headspace to complete and refine our new festival product suites has been pretty good. We are in a good spot now hopefully to move forward as and when events start to happen again. 


What difference can a good website make to a festival company?


It can make a massive difference. There's lots of various touch points that help solidify a great festival experience and the festival website is still the beating heart of the marketing efforts and can go a long way to giving a creative and interactive experience that help convince users to buy tickets. On the operational side of things, a well built admin can help festival teams manage more of the updates, saving loads of time and cost.



What are the main pitfalls of a bad website


There's lots but something that's not been well thought through and its very user friendly is a big issue. Having an understanding of your user goals and panning the user experience around this can help high dropout rates. The other issues we see often are just really poor creative and brand experiences which do a poor job of engaging users. 


All too often we see poorly constructed backend / admin areas which festival teams find confusing and difficult to use. This can often create huge time wastage issues as well as inflated ongoing costs.


What are the most important things to get right that you take care of for clients?


When you look at why clients use us year on year its dueto a couple of key things. They know they are going to get a consistently high level of creative output due to the fact we understand the audience as well as making sure that we deliver on time, on budget with very clear communication. We are giving clients peace of mind and a stress free life.


Have you experience of putting on festivals yourself? How did you get into this particular web market?


No we havnt run festivals but the whole team are in some way related to music pasts with production, touring or playing. It's a group of creative festival goers that understand the mindset of other festival goers. We were lucky enough to work on Parklife many years ago and won quite a bit more festival work on the back of it. We've never really looked back and now work with around 30 festivals a year.


What have been some of the standout moments for Plot over the years?


So whilst we do lots of great bespoke festival creative and websites we also saw a need to create a website product, PLot, which can help for smaller festivals get the look, feel and function, with the affordability to create something to be really proud of. Standout moments for us at Project Simply have been working with lots of wonderful festivals including Parklife, Sundown, TLR, BPM, Love Supreme year on year as well as launching Plot, which we think has great potential to help smaller festivals really reduce cost without scrimping on quality with their festival websites.


How has the company evolved and expanded, who works with you and what are their skills?


We initially started out doing lots of creative and web work for a variety of businesses, but over time we've honed our skills into festivals and venues which is where we'd like to think we've created a really good name for ourselves. We have no real ambitions to grow a huge team, but more create a brilliant place to work that creates amazing work. We love working within the festival and venue sector so will continue to grow via our creative agency work as well as our website product Plot. 


What else are you working on with Plot?


At the moment we have built Plot for Festivals which allows Festival to create amazing looking, functioning websites in record time at reduced cost. we are currently looking at adapting it for venues and other niches in similar verticals.