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Economist Film Project

The charge was clear: Develop a tech solution to display a seamless, video-rich site on both desktop and tablet. They sought out Vector Media Group to develop a solution—and we delivered.
Launch Site

Situation Create a Dynamic, Multimedia Site with an Easy Backend Admin Interface

The Economist and PBS Newshour partnered to create a site for “The Economist Film Project,” a showcase of independent filmmaking.

The two publishing powerhouses knew what they wanted. As a home for the project, the site needed to house hundreds of films, bios, photos and links submitted by directors.
Yet it also needed to serve up existing editorial content from the weekly newspaper focused on international politics/business and provide the administrators with a backend to review, approve and tag videos. And maybe most importantly, the requirements clearly prioritized a site that is mobile and tablet friendly.

Task Prove the Site Could Be Mobile-Friendly

The new site was built for scalability without constant developer attention.

By developing a large-capactiy CMS, our developers gave control to The Economist by designing custom backend technology for submission reviews, publication approvals, and the ability to flag and delete content. From there, our team had developed ways to use tags in order to boost time-spent metrics. Each film had been assigned subject tags–human rights, retirees, crime, etc.–then tied each tag to archive editorial articles and slideshows. We built the site to display Economist-related content automatically at selected timestamps during the films. The result: The Economist Film Project could not only recommend related submissions, but also prompt viewers to spend more time engaging with the site's content.

Action Select Compatible Mobile Programs

Our mobile-savvy developers saw the challenge as an opportunity. They resolved that they would build a site viewable anywhere. And they immediately knew which technologies had to be pieced together: HTML5, JavaScript, Brightcove's Video API, and a flexible CMS (ExpressionEngine®).

To share this vision with The Economist, Vector Media Group delivered a working prototype in early discussions to the extreme satisfaction of the client.

Result Build for Social Integration, Scalability and Self-Maintenance

All administration could be done by the client via the CMS. allowing for complete control and accessibility over the entire site. Having permission to self-update content on the site proved to be both a time saver and an efficient maintenance tool.

The 70+ tags had also allowed for an intuitive UX with a strong social integration. Administrators could now view videos as a sorted list or grid by most watched or most recent–ranking content based on tags frequently used on Twitter that day. To give readers opportunities to comment on each film, our developers had also integrated the Disqus commenting system–a templated interaction tool commonly used across social platforms.

Economist Film Project

“For the Economist Film Project, Vector brought to life a complex and innovative website that serves as the focal point of the project. Vector's technical knowledge and attention to detail made this launch a great success.” -Mike Bowser, Creative Director
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