Friday, September 28, 2007

How Execs Are Stumbling In A New Media World


Executives at Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia took great pains earlier this year to make certain the company's redesigned website looked flawless before rolling it out to the public.

After all, this is a media company whose magazines, books, products and programs feature ideas about attractive and tasteful lifestyles. Why not a beautiful site?

"That was a big mistake," Wenda Harris Millard, the company's president of media, said this week during a panel discussion at Advertising Week. "We put beauty before utility."

She said the front page, with its video player and jazzy graphics, included only about five links to actual content, "so the things people were looking for couldn't be found."

The mistake, she said, was in failing to understand that "when the reader or viewer or listener becomes the user, what she's looking for is much different — at least initially."

Read the entire article here.

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