Houston Zoo Launches New Interactive Web Site With Schipul
HOUSTON, June 26, 2007 -- Animal lovers throughout Southeast Texas have a new and naturally wild place to visit online at the redesigned Houston Zoo Web site. The new site, www.houstonzoo.org, was designed by Houston-based Schipul - The Web Marketing Company (www.schipul.com) in coordination with the Zoo''s Marketing Department. The redesigned Houston Zoo site is powered by the Tendenci® (www.tendenci.com) Web marketing application, which is developed and marketed by Schipul.
Attracting 1.5 million visitors each year and home to more than 4,500 animals in over 200 exhibits, the Houston Zoo encourages appreciation, knowledge, and care for the natural world. The new Web site brings that world to life online through subtle animation that has a three-dimensional quality and creates a lush look and feel. The new site incorporates interactive tools, such as podcasts, really simple syndication (RSS) feeds, online event registration and online membership sign-up, renewal and upgrade.
"Our goal has been to extend the Zoo experience with more opportunities to interact with Web users and really make a lasting connection with them," said Debra Ford, vice president of marketing with the Houston Zoo. "We are happy to have the guidance and support of the experts at Schipul because they are able to help us leverage the latest technologies and trends to accomplish our mission and strengthen our brand."
In response to feedback from recent surveys, the site has a section devoted to helping plan a visit. It also features a multimedia interactive map offering more than 20 downloadable podcasts about the exhibits.
"We are proud of the redesigned Zoo Web site because it never strays from catering to the wants and needs of the visitor," said Ed Schipul, president of Schipul - The Web Marketing Company. "The decision to offer free Zoo podcasts is very visitor-friendly, making it possible for Web users to customize their own audio tour and download it onto their MP3 players to enhance their visit to the Zoo."
The Houston Zoo began experimenting with social media last year with the launch of its blog, www.houstonzooblog.com. With the oversight of the Schipul team, the blog has been following the growth and development of Mac the baby elephant and features a contest to guess the date Mac weighs in at 1,000 pounds. Plans are in the works for additional Zoo blogs.
The Houston Zoo team is able to quickly and easily update information and add new animal and exhibit pages using Tendenci, a Web-based suite of applications that powers the site. Tendenci automates and simplifies many aspects of Web site management, making it easy to update the event calendar, create and distribute e-newsletters, manage the online press room and post podcasts and more to help enhance Houston Zoo visitors'' online experience.
The site also features special online offers for the first time.
About Schipul - The Web Marketing Company
Schipul - The Web Marketing Company developed and builds on the Tendenci® association management application, which has more than 330,000 users worldwide. Schipul is based in Houston, and provides marketing services on the Internet to a variety of service industries in local, national and international markets. Schipul''s clients include American Association of Dental Office Managers, National Pharmacy Technician Association, Texas Association of Nonprofit Organizations, Wolff Companies and DPK Public Relations. Additional information about Schipul is available at www.schipul.com and www.tendenci.com.