Apple - This company clearly designed its website with focus on marketing. It's got big, beautiful pictures and interface elements that capture the product's vision and idea. Short paragraphs help explain the pictures while compelling headlines build desire. The sparsity inherent in Apple's website helps keep the reader focused on only a couple of ideas at a time.
NYTimes - Here's a great example of a content-focused website. Distinct visual buckets help sell different types of content and heavy use of words convey meaning. The dense pages are information heavy -- perfect for info-seeking readers. The site projects an air of strength and elitism, as if to say, "we believe what we write."
Google - The focus here is on engineering. To convey meaning, its design uses sparse imagery but doesn't focus too much on structure. The site's functional elements are very prominent, though not always particularly intuitive.
MySpace - This site is all about business development. It's not very visually compelling, and its structure is often random. There's a heavy focus on targeted advertising, and it's workflow is often disruptive, similar to television advertising.
Facebook - There's a heavy focus on product at this website. Clean, structured lines help promote intent and relevant content is based on the users needs. The visuals are tame and not overly exciting, however every action is focused around the intention of getting users to take another action.
Amazon- This company has an extremely customer-focused website. Relevant content is based around the user's desires, while the structure is focused around merchandising. Although the visual design isn't very compelling, it's a lot more tolerable than others we've seen.
When you're considering what design elements to include in your website, spend some time looking around at sites whose focus matches your own. You'll glean some good ideas about what works and what the perceived organizational structure of your website will tell users about your company.