I’ve been following a particular online stoush between the IT crowd and the Marketers.
To summarise, it’s the classic custody battle that’s been bubbling under the surface ever since Sir Tim Berners-Lee hit submit – who’s the best person for your web site, an IT boffin or a marketing guru?
I read an interesting post by a digital designer on the benefits of both.
I agree with her.
The web is one of those tools that is both IT and communication. I often say in my corporate workshops that major newspapers employ both journalists AND people to work the presses. Without one, the other has no job.
It’s the same online.
As a web writer, I am currently working on six projects in which my expertise is to provide quality content that will hit a target audience. But I understand that my content works within the confines of the design being provided. It’s very much a collaboration as the designer and I work together to ensure the whole package works. I understand the design, but I’m not the designer.
I’ve also had discussions with a handful of designers who are frustrated that they have web projects that are sitting on their development servers because they’ve done the design but there is no content on the page. The project focus is very much one side of the equation only – and look at the results. Web sites sentenced to an eternity in online purgatory.
With social media even MORE collaboration is needed. The marketers bring the communication foundation but often lack the understand that “Web 2.0” doesn’t mean you shout louder at people to get your point across. The IT crowd bring the technical expertise and the willingness to push the technological boundaries but sometimes lack the focus that the outcome is better than the technology itself.
Where that mix is right, online communication works extremely well. It’s unfortunate, but many, many corporates and government departments don’t have this view, which is why I see so many examples of Twitter accounts that die a quick death and blogs that die a slow, painful death.