Frank Gilbane describes Gilbane Boston 2012 in a short off the cuff video after being caught walking by the studio. See the Gilbane Conference program.Read More
When not busy working with The Gilbane Conference I spend my time working as a CMS editor. As a CMS Site editor I often times feel torn between my responsibility to preserve the integrity of my employers website by focusing on the content (I.e text) and my desire to enhance the more superficial elements such as the background, graphics, and fonts. 10/10 times I choose to tweak the text as our current software has been fixed to only offer 3 color options and only one font…
While ultimately the content on a site is more important than its overall appearance, I believe that in an age where analytics show that the majority of website viewers spend an average of only 10 seconds on a site they are visiting for the first time, that appearance cannot be ignored. Those statistics are not only discouraging to the average CMS editor, but further proof that in order to make an eye catching site to get viewers to explore and spend time on your site you’re going to need a bigger arsenal then a three choice color palette.
Although many are in the same position that I am in, working on company websites that have pre-programed fonts and colors, and in some cases graphics, there are several simple ways in which to make a big statement without straying to far from what is deemed acceptable and professional by your employer.
- Add an Infographic
Adding infographics to your website is not just an easy way to display relevant company data in an engaging manner, they are also great in adding a much needed pop of color and excitement sure to make even the most casual of browsers stop and take a look.
While several companies will make custom infographics for you company at a price there are several websites that will generate them for free. Some notable options are Visual.ly and Piktochart. If you’re feeling especially creative and have time on your hands try creating your own using PowerPoint.
- Avoid large StockPhoto sites whenever possible
How many times have you seen a photo on a companies website that looks exactly like this. While we can appreciate the fact that somewhere out there, there may be an office full of people that are always camera ready and enjoy each others company so much that they can’t get rid of their ever present grins, this is simply not the case for most workplaces. If possible get real photos of real people in your office, and include pictures of your headquarters as well. These are the types of photos that will engage viewers and create a certain level of trust and comfort that stock photos cannot.
- Make your Headlines and Titles Bold.
As Simple as it may sound by making the text of your article titles and headlines bold you are creating a natural focal point for site browsers to focus on when scrolling through your website. When there is text to focus on within a sea of words people will be able to identify the content they are looking for easier, making them more likely to read what comes after the title.
- Add a Social Element
It has become the norm for companies to be connected on at least one Social Network, so there is virtually no excuse why this fact should not be advertised on your website. Add a “social bar”, a twitter feed and of course share buttons to all of your blog and article entries. People are apt to feel more comfortable sharing and reading your information when they have visual proof that other have done the same before them. The upside to this is that when people share your content on social sites, it will inevitably lead more viewers back to your web page.
Utilizing even just one of these tools is a sure to expand not just your website viewership, but also the amount of time they are browsing as well. These which will all eventually lead to increase in clients and customers!
For more information on The Gilbane Conference please visit our website @:Read More
The Gilbane Conference program and speaker list are now available in addition to the conference schedule and pre-conference workshop schedule and program – there are just a few details to be added. Other changes between now and the conference will be minimal and will be reflected on the site if/as they occur, so check back once in a while.
The schedule for the product labs/case studies presented by sponsors will also be posted shortly.Read More
We’re pleased to welcome back Real Story Group as an Analyst Sponsor of Gilbane Boston this year. Tony and team at the Real Story Group (previously CMS Watch) will be giving one of their popular in-depth pre-conference workshops (more details to be posted shortly), as well as participating in the main conference sessions, and in our Analyst Insight program for premium conference attendees.
See the Real Story Group Content Technology Vendor Map and find out more about a getting free sample of their research.
As many of you may know, Scott Liewehr has been involved with Gilbane activities for years and was our lead consultant and analyst for web content management, and a contributor to our conference program, a role he will continue again this year as a chair of the Customer and Engagement track. Scott has been putting together a team to launch a new analyst firm over the last few months, and the not-so-secret effort is just now officially launched, but already busy, as the Digital Clarity Group (DCG).
Given Scott’s experience and energy level, I was gratified and a little surprised how easy it was to talk him into joining the Gilbane Group. I was gratified and not at all surprised to find he was great to work with and immediately in high demand among our customers. With the seriously impressive group of colleagues Scott has assembled Digital Clarity Group is an organization you will be hearing a lot more from and about. Congratulations and best of luck to all on the team. Below is today’s press release introducing the team and a little about their vision.
(Disclosure: In case you hadn’t noticed, DCG is an analyst sponsor of Gilbane Boston - of course!)
DCG Press Release:
Digital Clarity Group Identifies Top Trends For The Digital Enterprise
NEW YORK, June 12, 2012 – Engagement and control are two words driving conversations across the enterprise in 2012 and beyond. As the CIO grapples for technology governance, the CMO struggles to keep up with the chaotic changes in marketing. Both are challenged with leveraging technology to engage, collaborate, socialize, and measure the more empowered consumer and the ever-more virtual workforce. To meet this challenge – some clarity is needed.
Digital Clarity Group (DCG), a new research-driven advisory firm focused on helping leaders navigate the digital transformation, is celebrating its launch today by identifying several seismic trends affecting the enterprise.
Technology industry veteran Scott Liewehr is President and Principal Analyst of DCG and has assembled an extraordinary “all-star team” of experts to focus on working with business leaders on all aspects of digital transformation. This includes advising technology vendors on how to approach this market, as well as the buyers on how to better navigate the changes. As Scott stated; “Consumers and knowledge workers alike are grabbing control of the reigns and not letting go. The combination of the social web, open standards, the cloud, and ubiquitous mobility to name just a few, represent a field of dreams for empowered audiences to both collaborate and self-satisfy. For organizations, these represent an opportunity to transform, innovate, engage and develop loyal customers and employees like never before.”
The transformation that DCG addresses is the overlap of where Innovative Change meets the Social Enterprise and Consumer Engagement, and is facilitated with Adaptive Technology. And as part of the inaugural launch of DCG’s practice, the team has identified several seismic trends impacting leaders across these four themes.
Former Forrester Analyst, and industry veteran Tim Walters is a Partner and Principal Analyst in the new venture and also serves as Director of Research. Tim most recently led Forrester’s research on intranets/employee portals and the emerging next-generation Information Workplace. His top transformational trend stresses a focus on an enterprise’s need for speed as opposed to “backbone technology”. “Today’s business environment is what the US military calls VUCA – Volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous,” said Tim. “The five-year plan is as archaic in this context as a flintlock rifle on a modern battlefield. Agility, flexibility, and rapid response will define the winners of the next decade. Tactics are the new strategy, and ‘business as usual’ is a terminal disease.”
Cathy McKnight is also a Partner and Principal Analyst with DCG, and comes from senior and director level consulting/advisor roles with IBM, Prescient Digital Media, and Aon Hewitt. She identified employee engagement and empowerment as one of the largest trends impacting the enterprise. As Cathy said, “To satisfy consumers’ growing demand for comprehensive systems of engagement companies have to completely rethink their approach to everything; operations, IT, sales, customer service, employee empowerment – everything. Success will require a long-term commitment, a full company transformation, and the willingness to embrace the disruption rather than avoid it. ‘That’s not how we do things here’ will appear on the tombstones of the hesitant and half-hearted.”
As a Partner and head of Client Services for DCG, Elise Segar brings more than 15 years of industry expertise to bear directing sales strategy with iFridge & Company, as well as RedDot and, subsequently, OpenText. As one of the most important trends in the Digital Enterprise, Elise identified the extraordinary importance of collaboration between sales and marketing teams; balancing technology, process – and patience. As Elise said, “today’s sales and marketing teams are armed with more technology in their quiver than ever imaginable. Marketing teams can target and tailor messaging, and sales can track and understand relevance of message at any stage in the funnel. But balancing the tools and the process – and allowing the right amount of adaptability for these teams to understand this context is what is critical.”
Robert Rose is a Contributing Senior Analyst with DCG and comes with a deep background and experience in web content management technology, marketing, and enterprise marketing strategy. He’s working with DCG to help lead the Web Engagement and Experience Management research and advisory themes. The biggest trend he identified is the need for CMO’s to embrace the chaotic nature of the new consumer engagement model – and to approach technology as one would media, channels or even brand messaging. “Technology should only be scaled where it helps to drive agility and flexibility to react more quickly,” said Robert. “Adaptability will be the new competitive advantage in marketing. The enterprise’s ability to not only be agile – but its capacity to embrace chaos and change will be critical to marketing success.”
Digital Clarity Group’s mission is to provide research-driven, actionable advice to business leaders who are working through the strategic application of adaptive technology. This may come as a focus to engage employees more deeply or enable a more social and collaborative workspace – or as a way to create new digital experiences for customers and engage them more holistically. Or, it may come as a way to use measurement techniques to draw insight into any of those areas. In short, today’s business leader is challenged with creating innovative new strategies for navigating digital transformations. DCG is there to provide the clearest, most pragmatic, and actionable advice to make that effort successful.
As part of its launch and the identification of these five trends, DCG invites you to a virtual “open house” for food, drink and conversation about the enterprise’s digital transformation. Join the DCG team in New York City on June 25th at the W Hotel In Times Square. At 2:00 PM the team plans a more formal conversation on DCG’s plans for research, and at 5:00 join the team for casual cocktails and celebration of the DCG launch. Space will be limited so please contact DCG to reserve your place.
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