Collaboration at Every Corner

2011 Internet Marketing Advent Calendar This is an entry in our daily Internet Marketing Advent Calendar series. Each day your favorite marketing elves will focus on a new topic to get your internet marketing in order before the start of the new year.

Collaboration is one of those things that I usually take for granted working in Internet marketing. It’s like the opportunity to learn new things – if we’re not always learning new things and collaborating on a daily basis, there’s no way we could keep up with all the changes on the web. But it’s easy to forget just how much collaboration goes into every project, and how important it is to the success of the project as a whole.

Last week the design and development staff at Hall got together after work to talk about new things we’re interested in, what we’ve been learning recently, and bounce new ideas off each other. It’s something small, but it makes a big difference over time and helps us build better websites for all of our clients.

Something that most people don’t consider in choosing a company to build their website is what happens once the work is finished. The web is always changing, and there are always new ways to do things better and faster (translation: cheaper) – so what happens once your site is built?

Maintaining your site is like getting your oil changed

A pretty common method is to wait until your website is so far out of date that you have to start from scratch, and some people are confused in thinking this is the best way to get your money’s worth out of a site. In reality, it’s a lot more like never getting your oil changed on your car and then buying a new one when it dies. Wouldn’t it be a lot easier to keep up with the scheduled maintenance and have a car that lasts?

One of the ways that we help our clients keep their websites from falling out of touch is by keeping them in tune with all the new things we’re learning. That means that the new things we’ll learn on a project next month will get passed on to all of our other clients with similar websites – even if their website was built a year or two ago. If they want to stay on the cutting edge, they don’t have to wait to rebuild their website from scratch – they can add in features over time to make sure they stay ahead of their competition.

Collaborating on a Drupal upgrade – Tim saves the day!

A few weeks ago, we had the task of updating a Drupal CMS site to the latest version of Drupal 7. Up to this point, there was no upgrade path for the main SEO module, which means all of the client’s SEO data would have been lost. In fact, anyone upgrading from Drupal 6 to Drupal 7 would be unable to migrate their SEO data (sidenote: it is estimated that well over 7 million sites use Drupal). Clearly this was a big problem, so we sat down and Tim wrote an upgrade path and submitted it back to the community for everyone to use. This was a lot of fun for us to do, but also had a lot of residual benefit for other members of the Drupal community as well as our clients who will eventually want to upgrade to Drupal 7.

Collaboration is a great thing for us, because it allows us to get better at what we do, pass on what we learn to our clients, and it gives us a great opportunity to save time so we can make every website and marketing plan better than the last. After all, Santa wouldn’t be able pull his sleigh with out help from Olive, the other reindeer, would he?

Read more from our Internet Marketing Advent Calendar series!