Evolution of the corporate website

Posted: July 23, 2010 in Corporate reputation, Corporate website
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[tweetmeme source= “jsnrss” only_single=false] For the past few years corporates have been rethinking their online corporate presence. In many cases taking their sites from looking like the poor sibling of their more invested in B2C initiatives, to being the ‘best practice’ corporate websites they need to be – with a solid IA (i.e. about us, CSR, investors, media, careers, press etc), strong creative (show cases, success stories etc) and very much on-brand. Yup, that is what we’ve been doing at View – along with our competitors – and doing a good job of it.

But I know I’m not alone when I say that this approach is no longer working – or rather is not enough – for many corporates. As digital lifestyles and general stakeholder expectations change, more and more organisations are starting to look at their broader digital communications strategy wondering where do we go from here?

Best practice is no longer good enough

We’re all stakeholders, in one way or another – so we all know how our online habits have changed over the past few years. Whether it’s our increased interest to read personal views, share our thoughts, expectation for greater transparency or the way we consume information, there isn’t just one answer for where the corporate website is going to go. But clearly ‘best-practice’ approach is no longer sufficient.

Clients that share this view are already working with us to evolve their online engagement – a broader mobile strategy and access to content, social networking strategies or better integrated technical solutions, but it’s by no means joined up thinking at the moment. The stakes are high – and we need to identify what the next 5 years will hold in store for the corporate website and their digital communications  (instead of sitting on the sidelines ignoring it, or waiting for others to define it).

For us at View, the risk is that other, non-B2B agencies will start to move into our space. With their customer driven insights and engaging use of creative and today’s latest technologies, they are perfectly poised to do so. And for our clients, the risk is as ever, their corpotate reputation are becoming more and more vulnerable.

Update: (27/07/2010) we’ve just held our internal innovation brainstorm to start the process of formalising the trends we feel that are emerging and will become more prevalent in corporate websites in the years to come. Some pretty fascinating ideas – from personalised content aggregation (considering how stakeholders will be accessing content over the next few years) to touch screen interfaces and devices.

Looking forward to the event in September where we’ll share some of the thinking and will also have a couple of client speakers too.

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