Armadillo Studios Inc.

Three New Web Sites To Kickstart The Fall

As usual things have been fairly exciting in the *Armadillo Studios camp* for the past few months. In addition to our usual gambit of web design projects, we are also working furiously to launch our first “iPhone App”:http://apps.armadillostudios.ca and on a re-branding of our main corporate web site to celebrate our “5th Anniversary”:http://blog.armadillostudios.ca/article/what-does-armadillo-studios-do. But in the meantime, we’d also like to share with you three new site releases that we just rolled out at the beginning of September.

These three new projects are the launch of “klintec.tv”:http://klintec.tv, and the redesigns of “tdstock.com”:http://wwww.tdstock.com and “ctoverdrive.ca”:http://www.ctoverdrive.ca.

The Launch of Klintec.tv

Klintec.Tv Web Site Development -2011

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Mike’s Bloggity Blog Enters A New Era

“Mike’s Bloggity Blog”:http://mikesbloggityblog.com is easily one of the most popular Entertainment blogs in Canada. Winning numerous awards for his posts covering the ever growing Canadian television and pop-culture landscape, Mike’s Bloggity Blog reaches more than 20,000 readers a month. (and growing)

Earlier last year, we had the fantastic opportunity to work with Mike on the first redesign of his site. It was the first step in the site’s continuous evolution, one in which the site transitioned over from it’s humble roots at Blogger.com to a self-hosted professional entity. And now this week, we’re happy to showcase the second iteration of Mike’s Bloggity and a new era for this fantastic site.

Mike's Bloggity Blog - Welcome Landing Page

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ToMarket.ca & Smartsealer.tv Open Up For Business

Over the past few months, Armadillo Studios has had the great pleasure to work with the fantastic team from *ToMarket Inc.* on a variety of projects. And now our collaborative efforts have come to fruition with the _almost_ simultaneous launches of “Tomarket.ca”:http://tomarket.ca and “Smartsealer.tv”:http://smartsealer.tv.

ToMarket.ca

The new web site for ToMarket.ca was designed to introduce the world to the company’s new online identity and to showcase the multifaceted extensions of their business. This new web site promotes all three elements of their company, which includes Concert & Speaker Promotion, App Development, and Direct Response Marketing.

Built by utilizing the WordPress Content Management system, Armadillo Studios developed a simple, yet elegant site, which shows the multiple facets of the company. We created simple illustrations to create an instant connection between the user and each element of the company’s business. We also rounded out the development with an easy to navigate footer and also a simple contact form.

Smartsealer.tv

The second site Armadillo developed was for the direct response marketing campaign for “The Smartsealer”:http://smartsealer.tv.

This simple, yet robust, single page site acts as the sole purchase point for the product’s North American campaign. Using the products already existing branding and the infomercial developed by ToMarket, this new site showcases the product to customers across the continent.

In addition the site also features the key elements of the product. It showcases high quality images of the product in action and a detailed list of the products functionality.

We also created a customized theme for the robust UltraCart e-commerce system. This system, while matching the branding and feeling of the Smartsealer.tv web site, also acts to sell the product to online customers. Through our development work with the site and the UltraCart system, we are able to provide a secure and intuitive method for potential customers to quickly order this new product.

We wish the ToMarket team all the best with these two new releases. It’s been a pleasure to work with them and we look forward to continuing this great working relationship.

The Procrastination Equation: A New Book and An Exciting New Redesign

In conjunction with the launch of his new book, *The Procrastination Equation*, Team Armadillo is incredibly excited to showcase the new online home of “Dr. Piers Steel”:http://webapps2.ucalgary.ca/~steel/.

Dr. Steel is one of the world’s foremost researchers and speakers on the science of motivation and procrastination. Towards the end of last year, Dr. Steel approached Armadillo Studios to see if we could help him update and transform his personal web site. He was looking to not only promote his upcoming book, but to also create a new venue to create an ongoing dialogue about Procrastination.

Using our extensive knowledge of the WordPress CMS, we set about redesigning a brand new site for Piers. This new site, which was launched a little under a month ago, is quickly becoming an exciting new resource for everything related to Procrastination.

Not only does the site feature Pier’s new book, but it also provides a wealth of innovative features to enhance the user experience. From a Facebook integrated version of the ever-popular “The Measure My Procrastination Survey”:http://webapps2.ucalgary.ca/~steel/the-procrastinus-survey/ to the inclusion of two site skins to showcase both the _American_ and _Canadian_ editions of the book; this new site is designed to push the envelop of the standard _literary_ web site.

We wish Pier’s all the best with the big book launch this week and we look forward to the continued evolution of “procrastinus.com”:http://www.procrastinus.com.

The Lazy H Ranch Project

The second of our big releases this month is a property site for “The Lazy H Ranch”:http://www.ranchforsalevail.com.

Earlier this month we were approached by Howlyn Properties to help them create a new site to showcase a “vacation ranch property for sale near beautiful Vail, Colorado”:http://www.ranchforsalevail.com. They wanted to keep with the structure of a previous property site, but build upon the structure to make it more appealing to their selling demographic and to provide key information to potential investors.

We set out to create a rustic western colour palette with dark browns and tarnished yellows for the new site. Then we imposed some _lumography photoshop elements_ on selected photos to give them a vibrant nostalgic feel – with a goal of showcasing the down-home western comfort and livability which exudes out of The Lazy H Ranch property.

The next step was to build upon the chosen site structure, by incorporating a simple jquery image slider and a fancybox gallery for the photos of the property. Each of these enhancements was developed to showcasing the lush qualities of this stunning property.

The final major enhancement to the site was to build customized Google maps which would give users a true understanding of the location of the property in relationship to amazing wealth of winter and summer activities in the Vail Valley. We built custom maps to showcase “the world class ski hills”:http://www.ranchforsalevail.com/enjoy-vails-world-class-ski-hills/ and “top notch golf courses”:http://www.ranchforsalevail.com/vail-valley-golfing/ in the area.

Over the next few weeks we will be working with Howlyn Properties and their Realtor “Team Black Bear”:http://www.teamblackbear.com, to tailor the SEO components of the new site and to help promote the property to potential investors.

It was a pleasure to work with both companies and we wish them all the best with the project.

Taylor Made Events Catering Launches For The 2010 Stampede

A few days before the 2010 Calgary Exhibition and Stampede, Karjsa Taylor of “Taylor Made Events Catering”:http://www.taylormade-events.com came to Armadillo Studios with a small conundrum. She was showcasing her new catering talents at “The ATCO Kitchen Theatre”:http://cs.calgarystampede.com/planner/event/149-taylor-made-events-catering-ftkajsa-taylor.html and needed a quick online presence to connect with potential online customers.

So cue Team Armadillo to help a new friend in need.

Within such a quick turn around time, Armadillo Studios went about creating a unique and professional branding concept for Karjsa, while developing a simple and informational splash page to promote her unique catering services. Using a soft red, rosa and brown colour palette we developed a branding for TMEC which would appeal directly to her target market. We also leveraged a couple of interesting photos of her exquisite Lamb Burgers and Karjsa herself, to connect potential customers to the catering services.

After a successful Stampede Showcase, we wish Karjsa and Taylor Made Events Catering all the best during the busy summer BBQ season.

The Redesign of Mike’s Bloggity Blog

It’s with great pleasure that we get to announce our latest project, the redesign of “Mike’s Bloggity Blog”:http://www.mikesbloggityblog.com.

For those unfamiliar with this popular site, Mike’s Bloggity Blog is one of Canada’s most visited entertainment blogs. Consecutively rated as the best entertainment blog in Canada for the past three years, Mike is a witty and persistent blogger with over two and half thousands post of valuable entertainment goodness.

He covers all aspects of the Canadian Entertainment realm, from the latest news on CBC’s smash hit _Being Erica_ to the latest in Canadian Films to the Junos. Mike’s Bloggity Blog is slowly becoming the go to place for everything related to the Canadian Entertainment industry.

Mike approached us earlier this year with a goal to take his *Blogger* hosted site to the next level. He wanted to roll out a unique and professional design, but to also keep the lighthearted aesthetic of the original site.

So, we set about designing a new layout which would push Mike’s Bloggity Blog to the next step. We created a new colour scheme which also leveraged a bright new header, but also incorporated Mike’s trademark Wordle logo. We upgraded the sidebar to make it easier for users to connect with Mike’s Bloggity Blog through other social media networks like _Twitter_, _Google Friends_, _TweetMeme_ and his own _YouTube Channel_.

We also equipped Mike’s Bloggity Blog with a fabulous new fat footer, which enhances the user experience by allowing for easier navigation and allowing users to discover some of Mike’s other writing gigs.

The biggest challenge for this project was the transition from Blogger to a self-hosted WordPress web site. But after some data wrangling, an unexpected downtime with a web hosting provider and some very useful WordPress plug-ins; we were able to transition all 2,500 posts from the original Mike’s Bloggity Blog to the new site, without any damage to the existing Search Engine results.

So with that we are happy to announce the new redesign for Mike and wish him all the best in his quest to conquer the _Canadian Entertainment Industry_!