Definitely there's the wider ongoing discussion about the overall purpose
and structure of Cotech as an entity - and that's likely to be ongoing for
some time probably.
In the mean time though I think we can separately get on with improving the
CoTech site, given what we know already about our general aims. Bearing in
mind particularly the principle that the structure and division of brands
you have should be decided by what most effectively speaks to the
preferences of your external audiences, rather than just matching
identically to your internal structure by default.
So in my view the current site/brand is probably trying to do a few
different things as identified by Ed, but the two major ones are (broadly):
speaking to potential members/supporters of CoTech about what the network
is about, and putting forward CoTech as an entity that can be hired to do
the bigger projects that individual members couldn't manage alone. And its
currently doing the first a lot better than the latter I would say.
So rather than try and make it be all things for all people, I think we
should consider a separate site (and possibly even brand identity) for the
outward, customer facing aspect of CoTech. That would be a lot more focused
on speaking to the big customers that we might target for working with us
collectively (suggestions welcome on who they should be!).
Probably that would look structurally and content wise like a lot of our
individual organisational sites - focusing more succinctly on what we
offer, why we are the best at it, and case studies and testimonials of what
we've done successfully before (there are a few good examples of
collaborations now we could use). And using language and visuals
specifically selected to appeal to that target market. I don't think for
instance overemphasising how the amount and variety of different orgs that
are part of the network is something that will necessarily always play to
our favour for this audience.
The immediate complication is that there of course quite a few orgs in
CoTech that offer differing types of services - and thats what makes the
current site a bit sprawling and unclear. Given that from what I know the
majority in terms of business size/employees are in the tech development
sector, I'd suggest it make sense to first develop an offer specifically
focussed on this market, before moving on iteratively to develop offers for
Ok thats me for now anyway - interested to hear what everyone else thinks,
particularly on what the optimal split/definition might be for this first
offer, and of course whether you think its a good idea at all