Sportsmen's Conservation Project (SCP)
The Sportsmen's Conservation Project is the public lands branch of Trout Unlimited, the nation's largest fresh water conservation organization. With help from hunters, anglers, outfitters, guides and other folks who love the outdoors, we work with land managers, government agencies and state and federal legislators to protect the best fish and wildlife habitat on the nation's public lands. We do this because these vast tracts of land belong to all citizens of the country, and they represent a priceless heritage that needs to be passed on to future generations of Americans undamaged, and thriving with the plants, fish and mammals that belong there.
Our focus includes conserving the roadless areas in our nation's national forests, working to make sure that oil and gas development on public land is done in a responsible manner that doesn't harm fish and wildlife, and limiting the amount of habitat damage caused by illegal off-road vehicle use.
We have several ongoing campaigns, and we are designing a web page template that can be adapted by our field staff to suit the individual requirements of each one. To be successful, it's essential that we get sportsmen, guides and outfitters, and other local businesses to join us in working towards our conservation goals. Only with their support can we craft the protections these unique lands deserve.
We're targeting hunters, anglers, horseback riders, hikers, climbers and backpackers...anyone who understands the value of intact habitat on our public lands. Our main focus is on hunters and anglers, and on the many individuals and businesses that make a living from sportsmen and women coming to their local areas to pursue their favorite pastimes. The equation is clear: healthy habitat equals opportunity...to hunt, fish, photograph and even go birdwatching in the wild. It also provides the opportunity to make a living in some of the best small towns and rural areas in the West, many of which have been hit hardest by the economic slowdown.
Traditionally, much of our target audience is conservative, and many of them live in rural areas. They take their outdoor heritage and hunting and fishing traditions very seriously. For many, hunting season in the fall is the biggest event of the year...and that includes Christmas. Although they span a wide range of age and income spectrums, a significant percentage of these folks are just now starting to rely on the internet as a source of news and information.
Our campaign sites need to strike a balance between the traditional look and feel of publications targeted at the "hook and bullet" crowd, and more modern design elements that will also help these web sites appeal to a more urban, internet-savvy audience as well.
We want an effective, eye-catching sign-up button that will appear on every page of our various campaign web sites. The button will be fairly large and prominent. The basic function of the button is to open a sign-up sheet so we can get essential information and make contact with supporters. That's the first step in growing our campaigns.
But we want something that says more than "Join Us," and just sits there waiting to be clicked. We want this thing to call attention to itself, and encourage visitors to take that next step. As the project title says, we really are dead in the water with these campaigns if we can't get folks to push this button and get involved.
We're not well versed in web design or what's required to make certain effects or features possible. Ideally, we'd like to see some sort of action with the graphics and/or text on the button, and that may be something we can only do through the firm that is designing our template. Let us know if that's the case.
At any rate, this button needs to be appealing to our target audience even without special effects. With our target audience in mind, please be as creative as you wish in coming up with a design. You can view a very rough mock up of our template at http://tu.hdev1.com/ (best viewed in Firefox). The button is going to go where the Who's Your Burger "ad" sits now.