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Client Description

Established 2014 in Statesville North Carolina, Highland Composites is the composite structures division of Highland Industries, Inc. (see their recent Django Upgrade here). Highland Composites utilizes a full range of braided, woven, and raw fibers together with proprietary, state-of-the-art technology to create composite products for use in a wide variety of structural applications.

The Challenge

As a new player in the marketplace, Highland Composites needed to demonstrate their unique capabilities and value proposition. Composites manufacturing is a complex industry that can utilize many different technologies; Highland specializes in braided composites, composite overbraiding, and open architecture composite structures (proprietary to Highland Composites). The Highland Industries website was not attracting appropriate customers for the Highland Composites brand and did not effectively feature their Composites offerings.

The Solution

DesignHammer built a custom WordPress website for Highland Composites to showcase their capabilities and attract leads. The new website featured high-resolution photography and videos to quickly educate prospects on how Highland Composites’ technologies can make parts faster, lighter, stronger, tougher or more consistent, as well as highlighting the differences between composites and conventional process. To better position themselves and appeal to their target prospects across multiple industries, the new website featured case studies with application examples tailored to the best use of Highland Composites technologies. Social sharing buttons (Facebook, Twitter, and Vimeo) were integrated into relevant content to facilitate multi-outlet media campaigns. Google Analytics was configured to track website traffic and appropriate conversions (contacts from prospects). To help the Highland Composites business development team quantify results, custom reports were also configured for specific advertising efforts.

Result

Highland Composites focuses their business development efforts on conferences, trade shows, and industry meetings. This team can now leverage the website to reinforce their capabilities with identified prospects. Highland Composites measures the success of these efforts by increased traffic and website interaction during and following targeted business development events. Following a recent trade show, Highland Composites tracked an impressive 100% increase in page views, a 50% increase in new users, and a 50% increase lead acquisition via the website.

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The Challenge

Qualyst came to us as they were transitioning from a services company to a services and products company. They needed a website that reflected that change and that would appeal to a variety of specific markets. Additionally, the existing website had become dated and didn't display correctly on mobile devices.

The Solution

We started by working closely with Qualyst during the design phase to ensure a clean, attractive, and relevant design was produced for their audience. As part of keeping their target segments in mind, we recruited a marketer with a track record of collaborating with scientists and creative professionals to use words, images, videos, and animation to convey complex scientific ideas. With the planning and design complete, we were able to move forward into production of a website to help Qualyst take the next step in their marketing goals.

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The Challenge

The Highland Industries website was based on Django 1.4 which was approaching end of life. To ensure that the platform stayed up to date it needed to be updated to a more recent version.

Django 1.7 introduced native data migrations and the implementation of them was not compatible with the site's existing table structure.

The Solution

We decided to target the latest long term support release of Django: 1.8 LTS.

In order to complete the migration the Django instance had to be updated, in turn, from 1.4 to 1.5, then to 1.6, then 1.7, and finally 1.8. Each version of Django represented a long list of potentially breaking changes. In addition to this, the existing Django implementation relied on mutiply-inherited data models for representing content pages in the site.

We carefully undertook a process of updating Django to the next version and then reviewing and documenting deprecations. We also carefully restructured the database schema and model definitions so that they could be properly understood by Django's migrations system. We did all of this in a safe testing environment using Vagrant. Once the migration work was complete and well-tested in a development environment we were able to perform the migration on the production server. The migration went very smoothly with minimal interruption and no visible change to end users.

The result is that the Highland Industries website continues to run on the latest LTS release of Django. Additional development projects for the site have benefitted from having native migrations and better dependency support.

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The Challenge

The previous website was built on a custom CMS which limited it to only few administrative capabilities. The design was also outdated and did not have appropriate support for mobile devices.

The Solution

DesignHammer migrated all the existing website's content to WordPress. WordPress is a far more widely used and well supported CMS compared to their custom solution. WordPress allowed the Center to add more cost-effective functionality which in turn brought more value to their users. We also provided a fresh new design that is modern and mobile-friendly.

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The Challenge

The previous website was built on Drupal 6, which hit end of life February of 2016. This meant the community no longer provided support for security updates. Additional, the website was built with a very rigid content entry workflow. This was a constant uphill battle which forced them to come up with inefficient workarounds for entering content. SAMSI also wanted to refresh their design to be cleaner and have simpler and more modern look.

The Solution

We redesigned the SAMSI website and successfully migrated their Drupal 6 content to a new WordPress CMS. In the process we removed many of the content editing restrictions that the previous site had in favor of a more free-form workflow. We also provided a comprehensive design style guide to help content editors maintain the site's professional look and feel.

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The Challenge

CEO Roundtable on Cancer currently operates three Drupal 7 websites: CEO Roundtable on Cancer, the CEO Cancer Gold Standard, and the Life Sciences Consortium. These websites were developed by other individual vendors with slightly different approaches on how to enter and display content. The sites did not facilitate their current business goals and anticipated future marketing initiatives. Further, the website were not mobile friendly.

The Solution

DesignHammer created new, modern designs built on a Drupal 7 custom theme. The administrative functionality was clarified and mirrored across all three sites. To minimize future maintenance requirements and to promote a more cohesive overall user experience, we simplified the number and complexity of page layouts. The updated design also utilizes Responsive Web Design (RWD) to provide a better mobile browsing experience.

In addition, much of the complicated custom code was rewritten to reflect Drupal coding standards and clarify functionality. Webform was used extensively for the Cancer Gold Standard website to assist CEO RT staff with the application process.

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The Challenge

The Intelli-Pole® product line was acquired by Highland Composites and in need of a new website to go along with the updated branding material. The previous website also lacked good content and didn't represent the product to its full potential.

The Solution

DesignHammer created a new website using WordPress to allow for easy content entry. Additionally we created an animation to demonstrate how easy it is to set up and work with a new Intelli-Pole®, and a configuration tool that can be used to show a variety of options when it comes to pole heights.

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The Challenge

Interiors In Flight believes that its potential customers are unaware of what Interiors In Flight can bring to their project and how their services justify a premium price versus their competition. The greatest challenge is that Interiors in Flight are unable to use photos of their products displayed in the completed aircraft due to disclosure agreements with their customers. A number of competitors have such photos. A primary focus of the website is to communicate the Interiors in Flight value proposition without directly using photos of customer’s products.

The Solution

The new website established Interiors In Flight as the platinum standard for customized airplane seating and cabinetry. We accomplished this by appealing primarily to the emotions of VVIPs and their representatives, designers, and completion centers. The new website is a simple yet elegant design that shows the quality products only Interiors In Flight can produce. Displays detail and active emotion on every page the user visits, without the use of customer photos of newly completed aircraft.

DesignHammer’s team on this project included Pausback Advertising, Exum Photography, and Patrick W. Carroll Consulting.

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The Challenge

DesignHammer designed and developed a new website for NISS in August of 2009 built on Drupal 6. The new content management system allowed individuals at the organization to more easily modify content on their website without the assistance of a website developer. At the time, Drupal 6 was in the early stages of its release cycle. Seven years later, Drupal 6 had reached its end of life. During that time, the website had served NISS very well. However, with official support for the platform being discontinued, it was time to migrate the existing data to Drupal 7 and redesign the theme for a more modern look and feel.

The goal of this website redesign was to put NISS.org on a secure, supported system and to help build their business and customer base by acquiring new clients (academia, industry, and government), cultivating relationships with affiliates and postdocs, and giving their current staff the tools needed to facilitate the above.

The Solution

DesignHammer developed a new Drupal 7 website for NISS, built on supported technology which will function well for a years to come. This also allows DesignHammer to continue adding new functionality and improving existing features over time. The existing data from Drupal 6 was migrated over to Drupal 7 using the Migrate module's ability to map old content types and fields to new Drupal 7 content types and fields.

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North Carolina High School Athletic Association

Project Date: 
Monday, February 17, 2014
Services Provided: 
Team Member: 
Kosta Harlan
Service: 
Project Management
Drupal Development
Module development
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Frank Yonnetti
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Web Design
Drupal Theming
Team Member: 
Chesley Kalnen
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Consulting
Content Migration
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Jay Roberts
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Project Planning
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Stephen Pashby
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Business Development
Project Planning
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