Rockefeller Center has sat at the heart of New York City since 1930. Stretched across 22 acres of Midtown Manhattan, it’s home to some of the city’s biggest attractions like NBC Studios, The Rink, and Top of the Rock. It’s a natural destination for tourists, but Rockefeller Center’s extensive and dynamic roster of shops, restaurants, and events make it a place for New York natives, too. To create an unforgettable experience for everyone who walks through its doors, the iconic New York City landmark enlisted Big Human as its digital agency of record for holistic innovation in content, design, and development.
As a New York City hot spot with a 90-year history, Rockefeller Center needed to create an experience that connected all of its offerings under one, seamless digital identity. To make sure Rockefeller Center operated on a sustainable system, the Big Human team focused on strategy and optimization across three fields: content, design, and development. The Rockefeller Center website also houses the landing pages for its top attractions and events, so we sought to enhance its conversion funnel, ensure its stability and reliability, and increase its search rankings. The goal was to develop and maintain a highly performant website supported by smart, engaging content.
Rockefeller Center tasked Big Human with revamping its online blog, The Center Magazine, and its corresponding newsletter, The Center. The blog provides Rockefeller Center’s audiences with informative content that’s relevant across all of New York City’s communities. Its newsletter acts as a facilitator, sharing the latest news and events as well as announcing upcoming additions to the Rockefeller Center campus.
Rockefeller Center’s content revamp had three main goals: elevate the brand, entice visitors (including local New Yorkers), and raise excitement around on-campus happenings. That meant each piece of content produced needed to have an in-the-know feel and establish Rockefeller Center as the go-to for all things New York.
After refining Rockefeller Center’s editorial voice, we upped The Center Magazine’s publishing schedule to six blog posts a month. Monthly article topics are chosen based on organic search terms, events happening at and around campus, and areas where Rockefeller Center can put its stamp. The jewel in the crown comes from Rockefeller Center’s unparalleled access to the best of the best. From notable artists and musicians to entrepreneurs and fashion powerhouses, we leverage the input from these industry thought leaders to add authority and authenticity to all of The Center Magazine’s content.
We amplify that authority and authenticity by way of the newsletter, The Center. The weekly email blast gives added exposure to magazine articles, can’t-miss events, and exclusive Rockefeller Center news.
Our content and design teams are currently collaborating to give The Center Magazine a facelift that better reflects its content and identity. We also conduct regular audits of the Rockefeller Center website to ensure its copy speaks to its overall brand and maintains complete accuracy.
SEO and Analytics
In order to boost Rockefeller Center’s digital presence, the Big Human team implements a range of Search Engine Optimization tactics. This includes optimizing headlines both on the page and in title tags, adding alternative text to all images, and utilizing keywords strategically throughout every blog post.
To engage with audiences off-campus and reinforce Rockefeller Center’s status as the de-facto New York authority, the Big Human content team also developed a monthly column rounding up events across the city’s five boroughs. More than half of the traffic from these articles now comes from organic search.
With these SEO initiatives, Rockefeller Center saw a 216% increase in organic search traffic and a 465.4% increase in magazine traffic from Q1 2021 to Q4 2021. In 2022, the SEO efforts continued to pay off — with a 106% increase in magazine traffic from Q3 2021 to Q3 2022.
For the weekly newsletter, Big Human composes eye-catching subject and preview lines, ensures the content is compelling, produces clear Call-to-Action buttons, and provides a variety of shareable links.
Expanding The Center Magazine’s reach and visibility was another pillar in Rockefeller Center’s content plan. To broaden readership and grow the number of The Center subscribers, the Big Human team launched a newsletter pop-up that appears on relevant pages throughout Rockefeller Center’s website. Since Rockefeller Center sees large spikes in traffic during the holiday season, we also created a newsletter pop-up that drew on the excitement of the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree, prompting a 21.4% increase in subscribers from Q3 to Q4 2021. We resurfaced the pop-up in 2022 and continue to see quadruple-digit audience growth.
We also collaborate with Rockefeller Center’s social team to share magazine content across all of its channels and motivate outreach with contacts featured in the magazine to encourage social promotion and backlinks.
DESIGN & DEVELOPMENT
Most of our design and development work for Rockefeller Center is focused on maintenance, optimization, and new feature development. We act as a safety net, fixing ad hoc bugs and making sure the website is stable and scalable for peak traffic moments. Our teams meet biweekly to monitor site performance and look for ways to streamline the process even more.
One of our biggest development undertakings thus far has been localizing the Rockefeller Center website. About 125 million people visit the campus every year and a sizable number of those visitors are international tourists, so we translated the website into nine different languages.
The Rink and Top of the Rock are huge New York City destinations, and tickets for both can be bought online. To reduce dropoff and the headache that often comes with purchasing tickets, the Big Human team is in the process of integrating a new ticketing system that has a more efficient checkout flow and better serves Rockefeller Center’s business needs.
Moving forward with award-winning innovation
In the year-plus since we established our partnership, Rockefeller Center has seen double and triple-digit percentage increases in site traffic, conversions, and revenue. Our content work has also earned Rockefeller Center a few accolades, including a Shorty Award for Best Blog and a Digiday Media Awards recognition for Best Newsletter.
The Big Human team continues to look for ways to update and innovate. We churn out new content for The Center Magazine and The Center newsletter monthly to keep audiences interested and engaged. We’re also currently working on a redesign of the magazine, which includes sleeker navigation and enhanced filtering options.