Bongiovi Acoustic Labs
Audio Expertise Defined
Bongiovi Acoustic Labs is a company founded on the idea of taking music engineering expertise (by way of music producer/engineer legend Tony Bongiovi) and translating it into other industries that require pristine audio. From medical applications to digital audio codecs, they have carved a unique B2B position for audio solutions, with a minor focus on B2C by way of their DPS plugin.
Sound Targeting of Consumers
I began my relationship with Bongiovi working as a contract web developer to help manage and update their WordPress sites. After a shake up in their marketing strategy, I was integrated more with their product team to help structure and design a consumer facing marketing/sales site. The goal was to move the DPS (Digital Power Station) audio plugin from a single purchase into a subscription model with a 2.0 upgrade and create a web platform to promote and support it with a wider and more general audience.
Don't Fear the (Computer)Speaker
DPS technology had already been integrated in products used by Toyata, Asus, JetAudio, and others. To support bringing DPS audio technology directly to the consumer, the DPS 2.0 plugin offers multiple audio computer audio profiles for gamers, theater systems, music lovers.
Creating a Website to Scale
I was in charge of designing an engaging landing page that sells the computer plugin, creating a shop with a single product (but that could be expanded to have more items if needed), work with their software/product team to integrate the shop with the plugin and subscription authorization, and create a community forum for users to discus and tweak their custom sound profiles.
- Marketing Landing Page
- Shop/Purchase System capable scaling with product/need
- Subscription System that integrates with DPS through an API to authenticate Users
- A Community Forum
- A place for support documentation
- A support and ticketing system
- A DPS blog for news and announcements
Space to Play with a Long Term Strategy in Mind
The underlying plan for DPS 2.0 was not only to upgrade and push a consumer model, but also further promote and test the technology for B2B integrations. This translates to targeting an a more tech savvy audience. This gave me more visual freedom from the rest of the Bongiovi corporate design.
From a tech side, I leaned heavily on the WordPress plugin ecosystem and was able to marry together account functionality from WooCommerce with ticketing software, bbPress, and some custom API integration. Utilizing and customize WordPress plugins was the fasted way to get in the basic requirements listed above.
The most constraining aspect was the WooCommerce store customization with a system identifier to automatically show the Mac/Windows download and create a single item shop that could easily be turned off if the need arose. WooCommerce is a powerful tool, but one that I find to rarely be plug and play. We had to manage our own distribution of the purchased 2.0 software, and authenticate the 2.0 subscription activation through the store.
Set the Stage, then Get to the Chorus
I started by creating a blank theme and tried to marry the various technological pieces and plugins in place. Since the DPS 2.0 software was still in active development, I had to run a local test server with a beta mac build of DPS and test authentication and renewal as the software team iterated on the 2.0 build.
While this process was underway, I also had to balance a design loop with the various company stake holders and familiarize their internal team on the technology put in place. This meant training users on store management, ticketing system, and basic forum administration.
Once the technology was in place and working on all fronts, and a design approved on, it was time to build the design out in earnest, and in many places override stock plugin styles.
My initial concept for animation was scrapped after a design and build. I pushed for large bold text hinting at sound. An image that you could hear without any actual integrated sound. Eventually we landed on a toned down version of this idea without the bold text.
Ultimately we split the landing sites into a main DPS 2.0 marketing site and an SDK landing page focused on gaming and VR.
An MVP From Established Sources
Post-launch, the subscription model proved to increase revenue and keep the consumer DPS technology arm moving forward. The forum proved an active area for audiophiles to tweak the minutia of their computer audio system.
I learned there are many ways to bring an MVP or web product to fruition. Though our main focus when I was a partner in the Agile League was to create Ruby on Rails applications, we often pushed for a simpler way to prove a product before investing in custom development. By utilizing WordPress to solve Bongiovi's needs, I was able to do just that and have carried that experience and cost savings to other projects.