22 February, 2008 – Code Computerlove appointed to provide online voice for NUS
The National Union of Students (NUS) and NUS Services Ltd (NUSSL) have appointed Manchester based digital agency Code Computerlove to create a new, all-encompassing NUS website combining all areas of the organisation.
The move follows a shift in strategy for the two organisations, who feel a single online presence will help to improve student’s perception and knowledge of what the NUS can offer as a whole. The new site will amalgamate three current websites, including www.nusonline.co.uk, www.nussl.co.uk and www.nusextra.co.uk.
NUS, based in London, is a voluntary membership organisation comprising around 600 constituent members in virtually every college and university throughout the UK and Northern Ireland – making it one of the largest student organisations in the world.
NUS provides research, representation, training and expert advice for individual students and students’ unions. But its main role is to represent the interests of over seven million students, fighting barriers to education, empowering students to shape both a quality learning experience and the world around them, and supporting influential, democratic and well-resourced students’ unions.
Based in Cheshire, NUSSL is owned by Students’ Unions and the National Union of Students. Its mission is to create, develop and sustain competitive advantages for member Students’ Unions – reducing costs and maximising commercial revenues. To this end it provides three core services; purchasing, commercial development and marketing services.
Nick Emms of NUSSL said: "To maximise our effectiveness, we will be creating one digital voice. Our new site will provide a single destination for students to come to learn everything they need to know about being a student – from how to get more involved in campaigning for their rights to discounts.
"The modern student market is much more diverse and therefore difficult to reach than previously and our offer has become fragmented. Building our brand online is pivotal to the future direction of both organisations and a key way for us to communicate with students across the UK.
"By creating a cutting edge website we will help to position NUS as ‘the voice of the student’ and make NUSSL even more effective in driving revenue for the Unions.
"With all NUS services feeding into one website, we will increase overall traffic to the NUS site and reach a wider audience. We sold hundreds of NUS Extra cards on the website last year alone, this year all these people will come via the NUS site."
Michell McCance, Code Computerlove account manager, added: "The new site will include blogs and forums so students can really get involved in campaigns and share opinions on issues affecting them. There will be video content and the ability get purchase the popular NUS Extra discount card online."
There will be the facility to link campaigns into Facebook, Bebo, DigIt and MySpace to invite a wider audience. There will also be a facebook application developed to integrate with the NUS.org site to drive more traffic.
Video content will be available on the site along with the facility for users to add a star rating and comment to the video. This will be available on all pages and will relate from anything to do with student life to getting involved with campaigns.
"The home page will be very campaign led, focusing on key student needs around the calendar – from College and University choice, through to Fresher’s weeks offers and exam periods."
www.nus.co.uk is due to go live to coincide with A-level results in August, when Freshers will need more help than ever preparing for student life. The site will be promoted via off and online marketing activity.
The new site will reflect the closer working relationship of the two organisations going forward and Code will also be involved in creating an extranet due for completion in July 2009. The extranet will amalgamate Nussl.co.uk with extranet functionality, OfficerOnline.co.uk and Orwell.
Code Computerlove has been working with NUSSL for more than seven years, helping to develop its internal and external digital operations. It hosts all NUSSL sites and last year created three new sites – NUS Extra the definitive student discount card, www.ulive.uk.com, to help promote a group of Students’ Unions who have grouped together to book and promote live music in their venues (the site promotes the tour circuit around UK and sell tickets to gigs online); and www.udisco.uk.com, which provides a quick and easy way for students to find uDisco events at Students’ Union venues across the UK.
Nick Emms added: "Code was the ideal partner to drive our new initiative forward. They offer strategic advice on how we can best market the site as well as amazing ideas for content and design. Their industry understanding is second to none."
Source: Code Computerlove