The term webmaster isn’t very commonplace in the A/E world anymore. In fact, I rarely hear it tossed around at all, even when talking shop with people outside of the industry.
Though they do still exist, the role of the webmaster as someone to “keep the website running and make content updates” seems to have fallen by the wayside. The immersion of easy to use Content Management Systems, especially open source ones, is one major reason for sure – but I would say more important is the increased focus that marketers must have on knowing the ins and outs of the web. This has really relegated the traditional webmaster role to that of just one task of an IT person or network admin.
Let’s face it, the plates of marketers are getting LOADED these days. Proposal writing, business development expectations, collateral, branding, graphic design (often), the list goes on and on. And now it’s a must for marketers to know their way around the web.
Even if your firm isn’t active in social media, that doesn’t mean you won’t have to field questions about it. What about SEO…have you ever been asked by senior team members why your website doesn’t show up at the top of their Google search results? (Perhaps it’s better to say how many times.) If there’s an update to be posted for a project description, does it go to the IT department or straight to your team?
Congratulations marketers! You are now the definition of a webmaster, on top of about a dozen other things. Embrace it. Become best friends with your IT team so you can understand the environment in which your most powerful marketing tool is hosted. Finally, be sure to do everything in your power to drive traffic through your website with your other marketing efforts in a targeted, specific way. It’s likely the most measurable line item in your marketing budget.