Another Post-pourri :: Sites/Articles of interest…

I’ll probably be doing more of this type of blog post as the semester winds down. Spending 5 to 8 hours straight (6 days a week) in the labs is beginning to wear on me. (As always.) Exactly how many times can a person’s name be called out? I lose count every day. But, the final projects are important and, despite the student’s frustration with an enormous workload, I believe even they realize the end result will be valuable. Just eleven more days! 🙂

So, here are some of the posts I’ve been squirreling away for the past few months. Interestings reads and some valuable information. Enjoy.

  • Simpson College’s Web site gets more functional design (reminds me of Cornell’s efforts)
  • Customer Made
  • Nonprofits :: Should you be blogging?
  • Links to check out…

Simpson’s Web site gets more functional design
by Rob Stewart
December 01, 2004

The Simpson College Web site is getting an overhaul.

“The entire site is being redesigned to make it easier to navigate and find things, as well as to update the look of the site,” Web Architect Missy DeYoung said.

DeYoung, with input from the Divisions of Marketing and Public Relations and the Web Advisory Committee, created the new design. It’s intended to improve both the appearance of the site as well as its usefulness.

To determine what functions to add to or update on Simpson’s Web site, the needs of a variety of people who use the site were considered.

“We’ve done testing with faculty, alumni, staff, and current and prospective students,” DeYoung said. “We will continue to do testing and surveys in the future to make sure that the site is both easy to use and fulfills our audience’s needs.”

One improvement is the implementation of an easy-to-use search function.

Customer Made: I love this … in some instances, it could work in any of the topics this is filed under: ‘Blogging’ topics, PR, Advertising, Marketing, Television, Radio, Journalism, Publishing, and more …

CUSTOMER-MADE“: the phenomenon of corporations creating goods, services and experiences in close cooperation with consumers, tapping into their intellectual capital, and in exchange giving them a direct say in what actually gets produced, manufactured, developed, designed, serviced, or processed. The CUSTOMER-MADE trend has been slowly building over the last five years, but with the current onslaught of consumer activism and the rapid rise of GENERATION C, it finally seems ready for its big moment in the limelight, where TRENDWATCHING.COM expects it to stay for many years to come. It doesn’t hurt that Management Guru C.K. Prahalad recently published ‘The Future of Competition’ an insightful and highly recommended book on co-creation, which prompted us to move CUSTOMER-MADE to the top of our emerging trends list!

    So what is it all about? The GENERATION C phenomenon captures the tsunami of consumer generated ‘content’ that is building on the Web, adding tera-peta bytes of new text, images, audio and video on an ongoing basis.

Mind you, CUSTOMER-MADE is NOT plain feedback, it’s not Do-It-Yourself, it’s not customization, it’s not even personalization, as all of these happen after companies have decided what the basics are, which products and services and experiences they’re willing to hand over to consumers, who can then (at best) modify certain elements, change a color, replace a cover. That’s still pretty much a one-way conversation, business as usual.

So what DOES qualify as CUSTOMER-MADE? Check out the hands-on examples below; a random yet varied overview of CUSTOMER-MADE initiatives, both ‘corporate’ initiatives and grassroots movements, which should get you going.

Read the article for specific examples.

So, how might this CUSTOMER-MADE concept work in “‘Blogging’ topics, PR, Advertising, Marketing, Television, Radio, Journalism, and Publishing?”

  • Blogging/CMS: Wiki = Customer Made. Anyone can comment/edit/create content for the online content management system. See TheNewPRWiki
  • Public Relations: Redesign is – uh, sort of – an example. It was offered up to the public … not generated by the public. The better PR example would perhaps be Elizabeth Albrycht’s OpenSource PR Project. “The first ever Open Source PR project, where we invite a willing organization to conduct a totally open PR/marketing campaign with the help of the PR community at large.”
  • Advertising/Marketing: A lot of talking and commenting goes on at, the non-affiliated online sneaker community which so far has received more than 200 million visits and 3.5 million posts. Every Sunday at 9 PM EST, their sister site, chat room NikeChat, welcomes Nike fans from around the world, to exchange views, tips and more.

Here’s a nonprofit blog scenario:

An association of healthcare nonprofits uses their blog as a highly efficient means of communicating with its members. The membership staff posts three-five new entries daily, which range from quick announcements on members’ special events to multiple entries about sessions at the association’s recent conference. Using the blog, staff members easily get this info to members in minutes.

Thanks to for the lead to this blog :: Portals and KM and then this article :: Learn From Nonprofits’ Use Of Blogs

Links to check out: