Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The Ektron Midwest Mailbag

With the new year well underway and many organizations having new budgets, I’ve been getting a lot of questions as to how they can get the most bang for their buck in 2011. Therefore, I present the first edition of the Ektron Midwest Mailbag. If it's popular, I'll try to do these 1-2 times per month.

I know that we need an intranet, but I’m having a hard time convincing management to get on board. What is the value proposition of an intranet that I can sell up the ladder?

I’ve gotten this question a lot actually, so here are some of the answers that seem to be the most effective:
  • Communicates important announcements more effectively than other channels
  • Provides live feedback on what employees think and need
  • Creates an audit trail for management to be able to track what’s going on more effectively
  • Provides a single place for online collaboration, helping ensure that projects are completed more efficiently
  • Offers an option to replace using email for much of a business’ day to day communication

I’ve heard that Ektron is creating an email marketing suite; is there any truth to that rumor?

Yes. The email marketing suite is slated to release with version 8.5 (coming late Q1 or early Q2) and will represent a major improvement over the current web alerts functionality.

I’ve noticed that Ektron’s partner channel has been undergoing some changes, what’s going on?

Ektron has introduced a new accreditation program to further qualify and evaluate our partners. We’ve been actively working with our partners to ensure that if a client chooses to work with a partner, they have the experience to deliver.

Is Ektron going to be hosting Local User Groups again this year?

Yes! I don’t have the dates or locations yet, but I would anticipate another whirlwind tour this spring…

I feel like it’s time for a redesign, but don’t know how to make that decision. Any recommendations?

If you’re not sure what to do, I highly recommend engaging with a firm that offers discovery services. Discovery is normally used in the early stages of a redesign, however, many companies also use discovery services to get a ‘state-of-the-website’, if you will. Therefore, I’d recommend investing a few dollars there to have someone complete a professional assessment of your website first. Then, if a redesign is appropriate, the pros will let you know. And of course, several Ektron Partners offer discovery services. If you're an existing Ektron user, you will definitely want to take a look at Ektron's Site Improvement Services.

Can you use CMS400.NET to manage content that doesn’t live inside a CMS400.NET website?

Absolutely. Because of the flexibility of the platform, users can manage content via the CMS and have it publish out to non-CMS websites. Whether that means it’s publishing via RSS/Twitter/etc. or you’re actually dropping our controls into other .NET websites, you’ve got a ton of options.

I attended Synergy last year and it was great; where’s it going to be this year?

Even I’m not privy to that intel yet, but I’ll let you know as soon as I know. You can always check the Synergy website too.

So there you have it, the first edition Mailbag. Hopefully it's not the last.. ;)

Got a question for the Mailbag? Email it to jon.kee@ektron.com with the subject 'Mailbag'.

Please note that identities have been excluded for privacy reasons.

1 comment:

  1. Great post, Jon. Lots of good info. Incidentally, I expect to be at Synergy this year. We'll need some time (and motivating beverages) to get caught up.