Thursday, September 9, 2010

The Uptown Connection

For me, like many studio owners and dance instructors, summer is always the time where I think to myself...What can I do to make next season even better? Usually the first thing on my list is updating and improving our website. This year I was looking for an opportunity that would better serve our students and parents. I often ask myself, how can our website be more useful to our current clientele and not just be a form of advertisement for potential clientele? With the ideas I had in mind I realized I would need constant access to our site to be responsible for the many updates my ideas required. After a long process and some debating, I came up with a solution that I was very happy with... The Uptown Connection, our new site which is a social network exclusive to Uptown Dancers.

So many of you are probably saying, (much like my students would put it) "What's the deal Miss Leslea? Did you get bored again and just feel like creating yet another site for us to join??" My answer would be both yes and no. I do feel an extreme urge to let my creativity out over the summer while I'm not teaching, this year it was in the form of amateur web design and studio renovations. However, this site does have a purpose!! Let me explain...
The Uptown Connection will be a place where students and family members of students can go to get the information they need at any time, or simple go to interact with other Uptown Dancers. Memberships must be approved and there will be access levels. For example, currents students will have full access to class choreography, music, tuition and registration where as a friend or fan of an Uptown student just viewing the site would have limited access to things such as U dance apparel, class schedule and general info. This feature also allows teachers and parents access to information students may not be allowed to view. There are many possibilities which I'm excited about, mostly the opportunity for full control over changing content and monitoring the site.

Some features that are available now to benefit students and families of Uptown:

~Up to date Schedule
~Online Registration
~Online tuition payments through PayPal
~Current Events Calendar
~Weekly videos of class choreography
~Class music downloads
~Shopping at U Dance Apparel
~Video Chatting and Rehearsing with classmates
~Social opportunities
~Share Photos
~Join a Group
~Spark up a convo in the forum

Eventually the goal will be to have a network like this one available within our main site. Trust me, I prefer things simple and clean, and yes I believe less is more. But for now, at least members can benefit from the ideas I had for them to make their experience at Uptown even greater. I can't wait to expand upon this creation and I'm hopeful that this site will become a useful tool to the Uptown Family. Thanks for reading as always, and if you have any feedback for me I would love to hear it!