The ChrisMartenson.com website developed a strong following based on the bold thought leadership found in the Crash Course video series and the Crash Course book. To broaden the audience and provide a platform for future growth, ChrisMartenson.com re-branded themselves as "Peak Prosperity" and partnered with the Shimshock Group to deliver their grand vision. The result of this effort is the Peak Prosperity website, an online community dedicated to providing insights for economic and financial prosperity, and Resilient Life, a sister site of Peak Prosperity focused on sustainability, resiliency, and preparedness.
The Shimshock Group was responsible for every aspect of the project, from initial conceptual design to migration and delivery. Our work began with a kickoff process to discuss options, benefits, and risks, and to create a big-picture roadmap. The kickoff helped us to prioritize high-level requirements, which took into account business needs, member needs, and Return on Investment. While there were many new features to be considered for the Peak Prosperity site, the features needed to be balanced against foundational technical requirements. The project would require new feature development, a significant software upgrade, and the migration / integration of the existing ChrisMartenson.com site (and data) into the new platform. All historical data regarding site members, subscribers, and hundreds of thousands of posts and comments needed to be seamlessly transitioned to a new site. To ensure all the issues were taken into consideration, we performed a series of requirements definition sessions with the client.
The requirements definition phase covered each cornerstone area of our implementation work: user interface design, information design, functional design, and technical design. The result of requirements definition was a finalized project scope for the first release of Peak Prosperity, a list of functional requirements to be implemented as part of future releases, and specifications to be used to shape the creative vision for the site. User interview data and personas information were used to create design wireframes, and the approved wireframes were used to develop creative comps for client review. The Shimshock Group's creative team was responsible for delivering the final creative design, graphic design, and graphical elements used to build the site.
When the wireframe concepts had been approved, the implementation team was assembled and began the project delivery phase. Our team members brought a wide-variety of skills to the project, including technical infrastructure, technical architecture, data migration, database management, programming, theming, graphic design, information architecture, and project management. Work was organized into functional areas that could be iteratively reviewed with the client throughout the delivery effort. We also conducted regular status meetings to ensure the client understood our progress, tasks completed, roadblocks, and potential risks.
After thorough testing and review, the existing ChrisMartenson.com site was closed and the new PeakProsperity.com was opened for business. The revamped site provides a variety of interesting new capabilities for users, including:
- Ability for site members to organize into geographical and topical Groups
- Ability to post Wikipedia-like entries on topics related to sustainability and preparedness
- New page and content layout for articles
- YouTube-like interface for videos and video playlists
- Ability for registered users to give a "thumbs up" to favorite community posts and comments
- Activity streams showing posts and comments of users, similar to a Facebook wall
- New payment options to update credit cards prior to expiration and use PayPal as an alternative payment method
As well, the site's newly implemented technical infrastructure is very robust and flexible, and provides a solid platform for future scalability.
The response from the user community to the changes has been extremely positive, and has led to many new users joining the site and becoming paid members.
With deep appreciation, we'd like to acknowledge the professional talent involved in designing and building this site ... namely the Shimshock Group ... In particular, we're grateful for the expertise, perseverance, and patience (!) of Ron Shimshock which were critical in making our vision reality.
-- Adam Taggart, Peak Prosperity President and Co-founder