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7th May 2006

South African Internet Marketing Seminar

Revolution Online – How Web 2.0 is affecting your business

Theme: SEO, Online news, Blogs and RSS feeds. Savvy marketers need to learn how to be part of the online conversations

Begins: Wed, 07 Jun 2006 at 8:30 AM

Ends: Wed, 07 Jun 2006 at 6:00 PM


Winchester Hotel

Cape Town 8001

South Africa

Registration fee: R1500 – early bird R1250 before May 15th

Last date for registration: Tue, 06 Jun 2006

Last date for paper submission: Fri, 07 Apr 2006

Speaker: Sally Falkow

Speaker: Leon Lategan

Link: Register now

Web 2.0 gaining the attention of SA marketers

Internet Usage has increased 50 percent in last five years

In 1995 the Web was still perceived as something for academics and geeks, but by the year 2000 companies had realized that the popularity and adoption of the Web was growing rapidly. As people turned to the Internet for information, a business website became a necessity. Finding that information led to the rapid growth of the search engines and the emergence of Google – now the most valuable and well-known brand in the world. Yet over 80% of South African corporate websites are never seen by the general public because their IT department is unaware of the power of optimizing a website for the search engines.

African Internet usage has trebled to over 12 million since 2000 and South Africa remains the continent’s dominant Internet centre, with a quarter of Africa’s users. According to the 2006 Goldstuck Report: Internet Access in South Africa the impatience with the slow pace of Internet growth and the high cost of connectivity has permeated the upper echelons of government and another significant shift in telecommunications policy, equivalent to the deregulation of voice calls over the Internet, could occur in the next two years.

This increase in broadband use will also fuel a shift in media consumption that is already occurring elsewhere in the world. The true promise of the Internet is coming to the fore in what is being called the Live Web or Web 2.0. With the advent of easy to use software like blogs and syndicated fees (RSS) anyone can be a publisher online. Consumers have found a voice.

“People are in conversation with one another and they are talking back to companies,” says Sally Falkow, author of WebSense: effective website marketing strategies for entrepreneurs and co-author of The Power of Online Syndication in Public Relations with Rok Hrastnik of MarketingStudies.net. She is a regular speaker at major conferences on Internet marketing and PR in the US and Europe such as Search Engine Strategies. “Online peer to peer review has become the number one influencer prior to purchase or decision”

“There is already an active and growing number of South Africans blogging,” says Falkow. “Some smart marketers, like Stormhoek Wines, are taking advantage of these techniques (blogging and search engine optimization) to find more local and international business opportunities. Blogging doubled their sales in less than twelve months. Using Web 2.0 marketing techniques is a completely new way of thinking and approaching supplier and customer interaction.”

“An old marketing saying is that you have to be where your customers and competitors are and today that is on the Internet,” she says. ”Do a search on a generic key phrase that describes your business, service or product best – and see if your website shows up. If not, you’re losing money hand over fist. A static website won’t cut it anymore – becoming aware of, and participating in, the online conversation is an essential factor in PR and marketing today,”.

Falkow will be speaking in South Africa in June. She is holding a one day Internet Marketing and PR seminar in Cape Town on June 7th at the Winchester Hotel. She will be in Johannesburg from June 13 – 15.

Tags: web 2.0, south africa, blogging, seo, sally falkow, internet marketing, online pr

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