Website shaped by the people we support

June 30, 2017

When it came to re-launching our website we had clear objectives around creating a great user experience and journey for commissioners and families and to make visitors feel confident that we understood their needs. But what was really important to stay true to our brand was to present Consensus in an accurate, realistic way – to let the people we support tell their stories about their life at Consensus.

We wanted to convey a real understanding of their life on a day to day basis and what opportunity, choice and success looked like for them.

Our marketing team met with a group of 20 people we support to understand this better, starting with a one day interactive and inclusive workshop. Individuals were asked to select from a range of different images which best demonstrated their life and also bought their own favourite photos to talk through and share. They were invited to produce a board with all the photos and sentiment which best explained their life. This gave us insight into the places they like to visit, the activities they enjoy, the importance of socialising, friends and family, building friendships, everyday pleasures and how they manage their life. Individuals were able to talk about what was important to them, their goals and achievements and life at the home in which they lived.

This helped inform the photography we took – to show real people in real situations – the situations they told us they wanted to see. This was all about embracing opportunities, having choices and being proud of successes and we feel confident that these strengths shine through our imagery across the site and our marketing communications.

The insight we gained also helped us determine the key messages we wanted to convey, from the people who know us best so that others could easily understand our values and what we stand for.

Before the website went live we met again with a core group of individuals to gather their feedback on how the site was working for them, whether they were happy with the images we were portraying and the effectiveness of the pages (with easy read) for people with learning disability. This gave us an opportunity to make tweaks and take on board further suggestions. Feedback was positive and there was real appreciation from the individuals involved in the process that their views had been sought and heard.

This is an on-going process, complemented by John, Consensus’ Expert by Experience lead who was involved in the project and works extremely hard to keep the voice and the views of the people we support at the forefront. The marketing team support him with producing easy read materials, posters and event materials for his role so he can share these and communicate effectively on his visits around our services.

It has been a valuable collaboration, building up mutual trust, understanding and respect and most importantly building relationships at the heart of our business.