research, ux, ui, branding, prototyping | created as a student project at SVC.
WHO IS SCARECROW VIDEO
Scarecrow Video is a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing access to the world’s largest publicly available film and television library (132,000 titles), and contributes educational and culturally relevant programming to the community. Scarecrow Video became a non-profit in 2014 to continue the founding vision of uniting people through film, and just celebrated its 30th anniversary as an institution and landmark.
Scarecrow Video’s current site is dated and is long overdue for an update.
Scarecrow Video has been a non-profit for five years, yet there is low public awareness of their non-profit status.
How can we better convey this non-profit status aesthetically and give them a professional foot forward when they are seeking funding?
KEY PAIN POINTS
Site lacks clear hierarchy and is difficult to navigate
Key goals are buried, such as donation and membership
Site feels dark and outdated
Navigation is large and key pages are buried
Unique features like staff reviews are not highlighted
CONVEY SCARECROW AS A NON- PROFIT
Calling out Scarecrow’s non-profit status with strong calls to action
Redesign the screens and process that users need to support Scarecrow
Make education easy and allow first time visitors to quickly learn who Scarecrow is
OVERHAUL AESTHETICS OF SITE WITHOUT ALIENATING LOYAL MEMBERS
If website looks old it reinforces the notion that, being in the video/DVD business, Scarecrow must be out of step
Design a home screen. Currently the blog is home, and lacks brand authority
Redesign the buried site navigation to align with user goals
Update crucial pages like blog and calendar, visit (store info.) and support screens
Design a new feature to bring forward new releases and staff recommendation
Brighten the look and feel
TIMELINE – 9 WEEKS
Market & brand research
HISTORY OF LOST FILMS
A study by the Library of Congress states that 75% of all silent films ever made, are now lost.
When Scarecrow Video pitched this project to us, they told us a story about a history lesson that really struck us. A story of hundreds of films being thrown into the Pacific Ocean – right after sound was introduced to cinema. Silent film studios all across the industry thought they’d become obsolete overnight, and didn’t see a purpose for preserving the footage.
Those films contained years of history we’ll never get back.
A Video Collection – Like No One Else
THE SCARECROW VIDEO LIBRARY OFFERS UNPARALLELED DIVERSITY AND HISTORY
WHY DOES IT MATTER
More and more people are streaming their content – with the illusion of infinite access to a buffet of titles. Yet, this is not true.
As we undergo a digital transformation where analog is becoming less utilized, we are at a precipice. We can choose to support Scarecrow Video and the work they are doing to preserve these titles and the history they contain.
If we do not, we’ll lose this collection either to time, or to privatization – where access to the public will be limited.
Discovering the Brand Story
IDENTIFYING USER SCENARIOS
We completed a thought exercises in which we tried to predict how certain types of users would interact with the Scarecrow website in a given situation (in order to complete a given goal).
We then used these scenario and user stories to identify key words to guide our strategy.
• Cultural heritage
• Local and global reach
• Cult following
Board members conducted a survey in 2016 and respondents were asked about their impressions of the website. Research indicated that the core audience was not as old as they were imagining, ranging from 18 to 70+ . They do see a diverse range of customers in the store – as well as among their volunteer corps.
As a cinephile, I want to gain access to a diverse selection of titles that normal streaming services do not offer.
As a cultural historian I want to preserve media so that the stories and history they contain are not lost.
As an anime lover, I want a reliable home source so that I can watch all my favorites and discover new ones.
After Research - Pencils to the Metal
BUILDING SYSTEM ARCHITECTURE
Our team got together and created a clean sitemap guided by our user’s priorities and Scarecrow’s membership and fundraising goals. We then wireframed the home page together based on these principals.
WIREFRAMES & SKETCHES
As individual team members, we divided and conquered the wireframes for our key pages with our research in focus.
RE-FRESHING THE SCARECROW BRAND
We iterated on several design directions that we were able to review with Scarecrow Video before moving forward with final screen designs. Our clients resonated well with our use of strong statements and calls to action, bold typography, stacked elements, and a nod to black and white movies. They loved the idea of film being part of a collective memory.
A mix of the old and the new.
HERO VIDEO - HOMEPAGE
WALK THROUGH- HOMEPAGE
WALK THROUGH- MOBILE SCREENS
With a stronger brand representation and UX that better showcases their non-profit goals, we hope this facelift will give Scarecrow Video the more professional and trustworthy appearance they’ve been seeking to continue pursuing their work to preserve their collection for the public. Film is our collective history – investing in Scarecrow is an investment in safe keeping our stories.