Civil War Preservation Trust Launches Integrated Website to Better Reach, Inspire and Move People to Support Their Mission
Leading Technology and Online Best Practices Help Nation’s Largest Civil War Related Nonprofit Preserve Battlefields, Promote Education Programs and Engage Supporters
Austin, Texas (June 1, 2009) —
The Civil War Preservation Trust (CWPT), America's largest nonprofit organization devoted to the preservation of our nation's endangered Civil War battlefields, announced today the introduction of a new website at www.civilwar.org that provides visitors with rich dynamic content and is integrated with the organization’s online marketing, advocacy and fundraising system to provide visitors, volunteers, advocates and donors with a more personal and engaging experience.
“Our supporters and others interested in helping preserve the nation’s Civil War heritage have increasingly turned to the Internet in their everyday lives, and are more open to electronic communications as a means for establishing and sustaining relationships with our organization –they expect us to provide an efficient and effective online experience,” said Rob Shenk, Director of Internet Strategy and Development for the Civil War Preservation Trust. “We believe that integrating our website, our online and traditional mail channels, will foster a richer and more satisfying relationship between our organization and supporters. It will allow us to tell our story more efficiently and effectively, staying focused on fulfilling our mission, not worrying about technology infrastructure.”
The new Civil War Preservation Trust website offers members and other visitors a more dynamic, effective and professional design. The site includes a brand new Battlefields section which allows visitors to quickly find information, maps, news, video and preservation related information. A new Civil War Maps section includes CWPT’s entire collection of battle maps. People will now find battle histories from past issues of the organization’s award winning magazine Hallowed Ground, as well as expanded video, book and photo content related to the American Civil War. With an expanded and revised set of Civil War lesson plans and curriculum, educators will find even more valuable tools to help preserve our Civil War heritage for future generations. Most important to helping support and fund the mission, members and visitors will have expanded opportunities to donate and/or engage in advocacy opportunities related to the preservation of Civil War battlefields.
Results were felt immediately, as CWPT began integrating Convio outreach technologies into its existing website prior to the complete overhaul. Through experience, the organization has learned that public awareness is the single greatest tool in its preservation arsenal and the Convio platform has allowed vast improvements in that advocacy. This newfound ability has been of particular impact in current efforts to keep a large retailer from building a supercenter on a portion of Virginia’s Wilderness Battlefield. Convio’s services enabled CWPT to identify, track and communicate with the individuals most concerned by this issue, tailoring a message to capitalize on their self-reported interest. Streamlining and targeting communications in this manner has generated a previously impossible level of outreach activity.
“Civil War Preservation Trust has done an exceptional job of creating and launching an online experience that helps members and visitors feel more connected to the cause,” said Hilary Shore, director, technical and design services for Convio. “The new site allows the organization and their supporters to tell great stories while using powerful and evocative images. They are providing and promoting multiple engagement opportunities, while also allowing the members to help manage the relationship, engagement level and information they want to see. The compelling content and calls to action are supported with video and other multimedia to reach a broad and more diverse audience base. From teachers and historians to children and parents, civilwar.org offers engagement opportunities for a variety of visitors while empowering the visitors to help direct the next level of engagement. It is a stellar example of what is possible in nonprofit websites.”
To better position the brand and engage and activate audiences, CWPT partnered with Threespot — a Washington-DC based interactive communications firm — to define, design, and deploy a revitalized user experience. The site’s redesigned front-end is integrated with the Convio CMS, a full-featured content management system for organizations with advanced website needs and multiple content contributors. The software provides a web content platform that combines content types and content relationships and integrates with Convio’s email marketing, fundraising and advocacy platform also used by the organization. The Convio system is provided through the Software-as-a-Service model offering a highly-scalable system that is available to the CWPT’s staff anytime, anywhere with little to no capital expenditure.
“Civil War Preservation Trust is one of those rare clients with great stories to tell, and a leadership team that understands that we connect to issues — and to our history — through story,” said David Belman, founding partner of Threespot. “Civil War Preservation trust and the new site are incredible resources for saving and celebrating the landscapes and settings of our shared stories.”
For more information on Convio visit www.convio.com For more information on Threespot visit www.threespot.com
About Civil War Preservation Trust
With 60,000 members, CWPT is the largest nonprofit battlefield preservation organization in the United States. Its mission is to preserve our nation’s endangered Civil War battlefields and to promote appreciation of these hallowed grounds. CWPT’s website is www.civilwar.org.
Director, Corporate Communications