The pioneering NZ radio website built by Cactus Lab in the early 2000s was one of the first radio stations to have live streaming available. Skip forward 17 years and the new incarnation has become fully responsive with a host of new features to honour the pioneering spirit of the b. From on-demand podcasting (bCasts) to in-page live streaming, bFM is again showing why they are the originator.
2018 saw Sparks work with bFM to reintroduce the iconic symbol of support for the station, the bCard. Evolving from its physical predecessor, the bCard is now an online subscription allowing users to select from 3 tiers of support on a recurring monthly subscription. Sparks oversaw the entire process from requirements with the client through to online credit card processing and subscription reports.
Strategy & planning
Responsive front & back end build
Ongoing support & collaboration
Integration with the studio's play-out software (Zetta) allows for real-time display of the current track playing, as well as archiving, to allow for easy creation of show playlists by the DJs.
The website is also an exhaustive archive of bFM shows. Not only delivering all show playlists, the website includes the shows themselves. bFM actively edit and archive each show daily and are generally available to the public for free within 24 hours of a show going to air.
We’ve wanted to be in a position to renew our website for many years, but the life of a not-for-profit alternative radio station doesn’t make things easy. While we have a large community of contributors and an army of people keen to help us out, we knew that the next step for our web presence couldn’t just be a nip and tuck by some savvy volunteers - but a completely new baby. After all, we were the first radio station in New Zealand to broadcast on the internet.
What’s more, we’re not the easiest client. Stubborn and resolute. Not easily led. It’s amazing Sparks ever wanted to take us on. But they happened to like that about us, so the process of designing a site that was modern, functional and also looked like us, proved to be simple and painless. We wanted a site that wasn’t just slick and easy to navigate, it needed to be simple to use at the back end for our volunteer base of well over 100 people to use daily.
While we had dozens of requirements, we hit the jackpot with 95bFM.com. The team’s planning, design and workflow gave us something that turned the heads of our audience and clients.
Hugh Sundae. Former GM of bFM
Re-energising a much loved brand online brings a unique set of challenges, from internal stakeholders to the wider audience at large. Get in touch with Hayden to talk through your challenges, hopes and dreams.
You're in good hands with Sparks throughout the process.
Hayden Judd, Senior Producer