Shamanism is an ancient practice and a growing trend for people desiring to connect with nature, explore alternative healing, or take a sacred pilgrimage. The Dance of the Deer Foundation, which runs Shamanism.com, came to us to integrate an educational membership platform into his site, to expand his outreach, and to enhance site performance.
How we took an ancient practice & brought it online for modern learners.
Since online learning is a growing trend, the goal was to expand the site to include memberships, featuring videos, webinars and other content from Shaman instructors. The strategy for the membership section was to present multi-tier content of real value in an intuitive and easy-to-use layout.
To ensure Shamanism benefited from organic SEO, we wanted some of the membership community to be open. To watch or engage with content, members must be logged in. However, we included open transcripts, leveraging the organic SEO value of making these public. All video content is indexable on search engines.
We handled digital strategy, design, development, and everything in between.
Skills & Tasks
- Research & Market Analysis
- Organic SEO Research
- Content Architecture Planning
- Digital Marketing
- Content Management Structure
- Future Proofing Planning
- Creative Web Design
- Weekly Reporting
- Custom Development
What we accomplished
- Designed & integrated video membership with multi-tier content
- All video content is indexable by search engines
- Cleaned up depreciated code from theme update
- Took Shamanism off multi-site, drastically decreasing load times
- Redesigned & migrated Journal subsite into main site
- Responsive site improvements
Media Content Management
Organizing and structuring the membership content was key to success. We created a video experience (using Wistia) and custom post-types for videos and participants. Videos are added, along with their participants, and the system links everything together—pulling in bios. Participants can be in multiple videos and display them in their bios. We also included a rating system, so members can look for most popular videos.
Managing videos and instructors needed to be an intuitive process.
Our Approach: Agile in Action
The Dance of the Deer Foundation came to us with a long wishlist and a fixed budget. We saw this as an opportunity to deliver a minimum viable product to meet goals using strategic planning and our Agile approach. Working closely, we carefully planned five production sprints. This involved investigating available tools and technologies for the project. We then created a plan that accomplished the goals—yet left room for design feedback and flexibility along the way.
How does Agile work in action? We constantly prioritize the user experience and focus on the functionality needed for launch. We discuss goals, design new features, and hide them if they become lower priority along the way or do not fit in the current budget. Our team creates a backlog for wishlisted features as we go.
Our team is flexible, and working Agile means we prioritize what's needed on a weekly basis. We delivered the Shamanism project on budget and accomplished the MVP goals—thanks to our structured process.
On-boarding starts with a kickoff meeting to discuss the project goals & requirements. We ask the right questions—understanding every aspect of the project. Then we create a detailed project plan, breaking everything down into sprints with milestones.
During production, we execute work that we've carefully planned. Every Monday, we talk with our clients about their project's specific weekly goals. Client are invited to interact on tickets during the week, and every project has a project manager to communicate daily. Our Agile approach means we constantly prioritize design and functionality most important for each iteration. On Fridays, our clients receive a detailed report of everything accomplished by our team during the week. As the project wraps up, we go through a rigorous Quality Assurance phase. Off-boarding and launch includes time to train our clients on how to use their new site. Post launch, Valet continues to care for your site with our ongoing support.
Our process is the result of a decade of working with clients.
Launched: Learn Shamanism, From Anywhere
The end result is a modern site with multi-tier membership, functioning in English and German. The intuitive UI design really sells the content, and looks terrific on desktop and mobile. The video membership was customized for the Shamanism team to easily use in their workflow. Now anyone can benefit from Shaman teachings, anywhere on earth.
Shamanism is now connecting with its audience beyond in-person retreats—thanks to their new online membership platform.
I truly appreciate the great work everyone put into this project & the amazing way it flowed so smoothly. I’m extremely happy with everything, and I look forward to continuing to work with all. Once again, thank you. You’re an amazing, kind & extremely capable team. It’s refreshing to work with such a great crew, and it’s a pleasure to know each of you.