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quadra blog how we updated our silverstripe blog with slack and sonos integration
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You may have noticed that we have recently implemented a new (and improved) blog! Our old blog was boring and despite our team sharing interesting content, we felt that it wasn’t a true reflection of Quadra’s personality and development ability.

Let’s face it, how many times have you seen this layout?

 Simple blog layout 466x421Probably more often than you’d like!

This kind of format doesn’t encourage any kind of interaction and while your engaging, interesting content may bring users to your blog they won’t be sticking around for long after seeing this endless list of posts.  

As a friendly, fun (and extremely modest) digital marketing agency, our main aim was to use the blog as an insight to us as a team and allow others an insight into some of our processes.

To achieve this we figured we needed to give the public access to some form of informal communication that takes place between us on a day-to-day basis.

For this to be possible we needed our conversations to be stored online and we couldn’t achieve this sort of feed with emails. Having used Skype for years we recently switched all internal communication over to Slack. We decided that the wisecracking Slack-bot and the programs colourful, easy to use interface was more our style and wanted to integrate this with our blog.

Slack provides an API that allows us to retrieve the messages sent to our account and use that data as we wish. We decided to create a live feed on our blog that would allow viewers to see what we’re saying on a designated channel.

To keep office morale high we like to organise a lot of activities outside of work including yoga, sailing, plenty of meals and even more drinks. The blog update now enables us to share photographs and videos of events and general office antics creating a patchwork ‘hub’ of content that’s more engaging for visitors to the site.

We wanted to give a little more personality to our blog page and decided that the only reliable feed we had the ability to constantly record was music. We listen to music throughout the day using our office SONOS system that each member of the team has access to and create playlists enjoyed by everyone.

After some research, we were able to integrate our SONOS feed to our blog via the LASTFM API that's available. Head to our blog page to keep an eye on what we’re listening to now!

The end result is a blog that uses a JavaScript module to manipulate the document and create animations but most importantly, reflects our personality. With an updated card design and the removal of page reload when loading additional posts, our visitors now get a much better experience and stick around for longer.  

We know that millions of blog posts, photos, videos and other types of content are uploaded every day and publishing creative content is no longer enough. As our attention spans decrease, blogs need to offer users easy to navigate and varied content.

If you’re interested in creating a customer-centric blog that’s both visually appealing and entertaining contact Quadra for more information about our design and development services. 

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The Team

Jack O'Connor

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