Friday, August 12, 2011

The Secret Motive Behind Proprietary CMS Packages

My professional purpose is to help our clients make money. In this vein, PIR leverages technology to improve businesses, not to take advantage of them.

Agencies that deploy proprietary CMS packages for their clients have all the power in the relationship -- that's why they push them. It's their security blanket; your bottom line is not their concern.

Agencies that deploy open source CMS packages for their clients are committed to empowering their client rather than ensuring on-going dependence on them.

Beware of an agency that only offers their own proprietary CMS packages, rather than an economical, and cyber safe open source CMS package for three big reasons:
  1. You have no power when negotiating fees, timelines or deliverables.

  2. If you decide your agency is not delivering what you need and you want to part ways, you are at their mercy because proprietary systems means there are no outside developers you can ask to take over their tasks. You likely have to rebuild your site from scratch, all over again.

  3. Technological innovation is not a nice to have for your company — it is a need to have. Companies like Polaroid, Blockbuster, Palm — and soon RIM— failed because they did not keep up with technology trends, why not learn from their mistakes?

    Proprietary CMS systems means future functionality and technology upgrades will slow to a crawl. No agency can keep up with the rapid feature development occurring in these massive open source initiatives. For this reason you should be cautious when considering proprietary CMS packages.

While there may be many talented and well-intentioned developers within an agency that know better,  there is likely a money guy behind the scenes insisting that they only offer their own proprietary system as a solution.

However, if your agency is a true-blue partner, and comes to you and says: “We believe you should drive your business toward open-source CMS systems because...” Listen to them — and stay with them. They have your best interests at heart, and truly care about your profitability.

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