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The Web has quickly become the place to go to find information about a company, and smart marketers are always looking for ways to leverage it to continually disseminate information quickly and effectively.

To do this, many have come to rely on content management systems (CMSs) to make the process to update information on the fly. Content management systems enable users unfamiliar with HTML or other scripting languages to modify the content on their site and create pages and sections. Pages created by these systems typically run off of templates that help to conform content to predetermined design and layout styles.

But, before you run out and jump on the CMS bandwagon, consider the underlying need for companies to also take into consideration the process through which they modify the outward appearance of the Web site.

Making things easier does not always make the end result better. By virtue of added convenience that the CMS industry has brought, the process and procedure of refreshing one of the most powerful sales tools—the corporate Web site—has often degenerated. Manual processes have now lapsed, in many cases, with changes to the Web site now being run through one person with administrative capabilities and a CMS at their fingertips.

This article will discuss some of the common content management pitfalls that companies fall in to as well as how marketers can avoid the negative effects of sloppy content management.

The Role of Content Management Systems

CMSs have been rapidly adopted by marketing professionals hoping to reduce reliance on IT departments for quick, frequent Web site changes. Content management systems provide many immediate benefits, including the ability to…

  • Delegate content management to appropriate parties

  • Make changes more quickly and less expensively

  • Deliver content faster to the end user

  • Maintain brand and style consistency with templates

Before the age of the CMS, changes to a Web site went through a formal and often complex process. Changes would be compiled, requiring the marketing department to take a broad look at the site and think strategically.

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Reid Carr is the president and strategy director for Red Door Interactive (www.reddoor.biz). He can be reached at rcarr@reddoor.biz.