• Surrey Tennis

CASE STUDY: Wigmore Re-branding

Wigmore LTC, a Surrey club based in Streatham recently underwent a re-branding exercise to great success! We asked them to put together a case study to help other clubs considering the same path. We hope you enjoy.

CASE STUDY - Re-branding for a new era.

In mid 2019, Wigmore Lawn Tennis Club made the decision that it was time to upgrade our website since it had been developed over a decade ago and needed to evolve to match modern technology. Since the user interface of our membership and court booking system was also being upgraded by the software provider, we took the leap and decided to undertake a complete re-brand while developing our brand new club website that runs alongside the booking system. From the idea of the new website being first positioned to the Committee, it was a mere 6 weeks until the new brand and website launched. Since its launch in May, the new website has had many thousands of unique visitors and page views and the members love it! Potential new members find it informative, easy to navigate and, importantly, easy to apply for membership!

'The new Wigmore website is lovely and clear, and makes it easy for us as members to stay up to date with club news and events, book courts etc. It also looks welcoming and friendly for new members'. Sheila Horvat, Wigmore Member

We thought it might be useful for other clubs looking to upgrade their website or re-brand to read what we did written as a step by step guide.

Step 1 – Find an enthusiastic project lead

Wigmore had a new person join the Committee who had a vision – for a total overhaul of the brand and website. Probably more important than that, she also had the energy and motivation to see it through, ensuring it got delivered within a few weeks. Make sure you have a clear owner/sponsor for the initiative. It was absolutely a team effort to get it to over the line, but important a single individual holds the vision for the project, and motivation to make it happen.

Step 2 – Leverage the talent in your club

We were fortunate to be able to draw upon the incredible design skills of one of our own members for the re-branding exercise. This was excellent on a number of counts – firstly, he volunteered to help so there was no cost involved. Secondly, as a passionate and long-standing member of the club he took great care in respecting the heritage of our club, whilst moving it to the next era. His insight on what members might/might not like meant even version one of the logos was really on point, and as a group we just continued to iterate in a couple of ‘design salons’ from there until we had it nailed.

Step 3 – Don’t design by committee

In so many examples, new logos and websites are designed iteratively and by committee. For a new logo you need clear design direction, and same for a website. In this day and age simplicity and accessibility are key, so by engaging lots of people along the way to give their views can be hugely detrimental to what you end up with. That’s not to say you don’t need to seek input at key milestones, and test it (we certainly did this!) but keep the design intent and integrity throughout. We scheduled specific creative reviews – we did 3 formal website reviews - two with a small sub-set of the membership and one with the full committee. That was it!

Step 4 – Don’t start from scratch

Gone are the days that you need to contract a web designer to build you a site from scratch. There are lots of platforms out there that can help you build it, using pre-set templates and designs. This hugely speeds up the process and still leads to a professional look, and most importantly is set up so its easy to maintain. We used Squarespace, which is particularly user friendly but there are lots of others out there. The LTA’s Clubspark can also be a great are resource for tennis clubs to use.

Step 5 - Integrate with existing systems.

We use a Danish system called Club Solution for our membership management and court booking software. Rather fortunately for us, their system was being updated at the time we were developing our new website. After volunteering as guinea pigs to try their ‘new look’, we were able to develop our members’ only area so that it married perfectly with the new public-facing website, so actually however a member accessed it, it all looked perfectly aligned and seamless.

Step 6 - Stay agile

As we were going through the process of both the new logo design and new website, we remained very committed to design in it in such a way that we didn’t need to do it again any time soon. This meant:

- We developed a few variants of the logo so the same brand could be carried through in lots of different situations

- We kept the new website structure as simple as possible - meaning we couldn’t forget to update it, it would be very easy for committee members to maintain, and would therefore always be up to date for anyone visiting it

Step 6 – Train people

Pre-launch we got the web-designer to come and do some training with the members of the committee who would need to edit and update the website – our club Administrator, Social Secretary, Secretary, Membership Secretary and our Match Secretary, as well as our Head Coaches. This was crucial in ensuring that people could add news, events and photos as they happened. Using modern website platforms – particularly if you use platforms like Squarespace or Clubspark means you thankfully don’t have to be an IT geek to make your website look professional and work well.

Step 7 – Spread it wide and far

Now we have the new branding, we’ve been using it wherever we can. When we launched, we got ourselves co-ordinated and sent a newsletter to our members to draw their attention to it and also promoted it through all of our social media channels. We design posters for the clubhouse for every event we’re doing with the new logo front and centre, and we’ve also revamped our club clothing.

You can visit their website here:

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