From Onsite to Online: OIC Helps Build Zócalo Web Presence

Zocalo Public Square Homepage and Jonathan Gold Cocktail Party Landing Page


Since 2003, Zócalo has connected people to ideas and to each other in an open, nonpartisan way. The group began by organizing free cultural and intellectual events in Los Angeles to enhance people’s understanding of the community. In 2009, Zócalo launched its website containing full write-ups of events and speakers.

Zócalo has evolved into a new kind of social entrepreneur, through virtual sharing and live events across the country and around the world—in Shanghai, Berlin, and Guadalajara. The concept thrives on bringing the debate about serious issues into the public square.


The Zócalo website was originally used for event promotion. The organization wanted to expand it into a vibrant forum, taking on the most important community-related issues of our time. With a new editorial staff featuring highly regarded journalists from the Los Angeles Times and Washington Post, Zócalo had the resources to create great online content. However, the functionality was lacking to support aspirations for a publication website and content-aggregating blog.


OIC created the site architecture to integrate live content and journalism into a single, cohesive presentation. The agency developed tools to make it easier for the nonprofit organization to maintain and expand the offering. OIC created a site design with the functionality to spotlight the various topics and categories as well as to enable user-generated content and engagement.


The Zócalo website gained recognition for its new features including “Nexus,” “Where I Go,” “The Voyage Home,” and “Drinks with. . . .” Unique visitors to the site increased from 10,000 to 60,000 after the redesign. The new site design enabled Zócalo to leverage connectedness and engage users with stimulating content and discussions.