Rob Jennings

Talent on the Rise.

At Starburst Creative, we are constantly seeking ways to empower the next generation of leaders within our industry. Through our partnership with NAIT, we were able to create the Starburst Creative Scholarship in 2014, awarded to students who achieved a top academic achievement based on the PREL 3378 Public Relations course.

Our goal was to make this an annual award in the Business Administration Marketing program to help upcoming talent achieve their academic and career aspirations and shine a spotlight on the next generation of advertisers and marketers.

Several current Starburst employees were encouraged to pursue advertising careers through similar scholarships and we wanted to give the same encouragement to students who demonstrate the skills and the drive to succeed in the business.

We have seen great success in previous years and are pleased to announce Anna Vincent and Claudean Murray this year’s co-recipients. Anna and Claudean received of 94% and 90% respectively – a demonstration of the capabilities we can expect to see from graduates.

Congratulations Anna and Claudean! We look forward to seeing many successes in your future.

Rob Jennings

Alberta Liquor Store Association: ID Under 25 Point of Sale Campaign

Liquor store employees frequently face resistance when asking for a person’s ID during a sale. The public perception around ID-checking is often negative, even though liquor store employees are simply doing their part to prevent underage drinking in Alberta.

For the Alberta Liquor Store Association’s latest ID Under 25 campaign, we developed a series of posters, till talkers and buttons that turned the negative into a positive. Nobody wants to feel old. Being asked for ID doesn’t need to be an inconvenience. Instead, it can be a welcome compliment.

The campaign is copy-driven and features headlines such as  “You’ve aged amazingly” and “Many people find it flattering.” The latter headline is used on a poster that also features a mirrored finish so the reader can see themselves reflected.

Not only does the light-hearted messaging show customers that being asked for ID isn’t a negative experience, it also helps to support and empower liquor store employees to increase the rate at which they ask for identification.

The posters and buttons work to dispel the notion that there should be resistance when a customer is asked for ID when purchasing liquor. Our goal with the campaign was to ensure employees feel comfortable asking for proof of age when a customer appears to be under 25 and that customers feel complimented, rather than affronted or inconvenienced, when asked to show identification.

Kevin Newcombe

All Weather Windows: Dealer Locator Map

 

In the fall of 2014, we launched a new website for All Weather Windows, a company whose products are sold in nearly 700 dealers across Canada. A prominent feature of the website is a dealer locator map; however, the attempt to load that amount of data into a standard interactive map created a few technical and usability hurdles that we had to overcome.

When we originally added the locations to the map, we were overwhelmed by the sheer number of dealers—the map showed a giant cluster of markers overlapping each other.

 

To counter this, we added marker clustering to the map—at higher levels, you would see one single marker with a number indicating how many locations were close by. As you zoom in to more detail, the individual dealers’ markers broke off from the cluster to show their actual location.

Clicking each marker brings up the dealer’s contact information. However, with approximately 700 dealers, load times could lag, which was especially problematic since the map would live on the homepage. We realized that the average user might only look up information for a few locations, so we trimmed as much from the map as possible: for each location, only the map coordinates and a unique ID associated with it would be loaded. All the contact information for each location is loaded on demand when the user clicks a marker. This made a significant improvement on the load times and reduced any lagging when users would search for dealer-specific information.

 

We’re also implementing another technique for increasing page speed. Traditionally, the page would run a script that goes to the database, retrieves a list of dealers and writes that into JavaScript, which loads the map. Since this could take a long time and the dealer list is updated infrequently, caching was adding to the site so that every time a change was made to the dealer list in the database, our CMS regenerated a static JavaScript file to reduce overall load times.

Read our blog post about the process behind the design and overall development of the All Weather Windows website.

Chelsea Rho

Field Law: Student Recruitment Website

It was the fall of 2013, and Field Law’s student recruitment materials had grown outdated. As the Firm’s first impression for many university students, these pieces needed to better reflect the dynamic nature of the company’s culture, staff and student employment opportunities.

Upon learning how intimidating the process of applying for articling student positions can be, Starburst set out to create a website that would serve as an interactive, approachable and informative portal. Through this portal, students could learn more about the application process, while familiarizing themselves with the dynamic personality and professional values that are central to the success of Field Law and their people.

A narrative theme was woven throughout the piece, incorporating fun, approachable language and modern designs. Additionally, a fun and interactive quiz was created for the site, assigning would-be applicants identities such as “Law Aficionado,” “Community Buff” or “Wonderer,” which spoke to the well-rounded nature and diversified skill set of Field’s team of lawyers and the students they employ.

Starburst created a site with a bright design incorporating a youthful take on Field Law’s brand. It was built responsively, ensuring a seamless user experience regardless of device. Featuring informative resources on application to-dos, former student testimonials, an interactive FAQ section, news and upcoming events, the site became a hub containing everything a student may need when applying for an articling position.

The website was well received among internal and external audiences and received thousands of visits from a niche target audience. It remains an essential resource in Field Law’ student recruitment toolkit.

Kevin Newcombe

All Weather Windows Website

All Weather Windows, Canada’s largest privately-owned window and door manufacturer, was looking for a website refresh that could fully reflect the company’s knowledge, expertise and extensive product line. As a long-standing client of ours, we were excited for the chance to give this nationally-recognized brand an impressive new web presence.

All Weather Windows has been in business for over 36 years and, as a result, they have a large database of products to be displayed. In order to do them justice, we undertook a research process to ensure that we could showcase each product to its best advantage, while retaining swift and intuitive website usability.

For a website of this scale and complexity, and with such a wide variety of audiences, it is critical that visitors have easy access to information relevant to their needs. Whether the visitor is a dealer, builder or homeowner, the website makes use of rich drop-down menus, sidebars and contextual links so that every website visitor can find necessary and useful information.

The result of this project is a clean and modern refresh that truly highlights the expertise and knowledge of All Weather Windows throughout their many years in business, and that showcases their high quality, energy efficient products through informative product pages and a comprehensive style guide.