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  • Controversial new Nandos ad

    This one should get a few tongues wagging. Here's the new Nandos ad that is being released today on TV. Given the recent launch of the new breakaway Congress of the People (Cope) party from the ruling African National Congress (ANC) -- and imminent elections next year, this one is going to be hotter than extra hot peri peri! In true Nandos style, the ad is newsworthy, cheeky, funny and clever... a great piece of satire. The ad features internationally reknown political satirist Evita Bezuidenhout/Pieter Dirk-Uys. Will be interesting to see if any other political parties are lampooned in follow-up...

  • Mobile surpasses traditional web in South Africa

    It's what we predicted would happen. In fact it's what we thought had happened sometime ago, but here are some authoritative figures that confirm it. According to a piece in Bizcommunity, Rick Joubert of Vodafone estimates there are now at least 9,5-million mobile wap users (read: mobile web) in the country. These are combined user figures on all the local cellphone networks. In comparison, Online Publisher Association (OPA) statistics of traditional desktop web SA users, puts the local-only usership figure at around 5,7-million users. (Audited Nielsen//Netratings). Arthur Goldstuck's figures on general internet use are also near the OPA estimates, at...

  • DA's online presence disappoints

    I had high hopes for SA's political parties and their use of the web. In an interview with Sapa on IOL my colleagues didn't share my optimism. In an Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) presentation in Pretoria this year, I urged political parties to take online seriously and demonstrated the Barack Obama website's innovative use of social media (that was before Obamamania had set in). The reason I had high hopes is that I guessed (1) many local political parties would draw inspiration from the Obama site and look to emulate at least a portion of what has been the world's...

  • Key blogs about innovation, media & biz online

    When it comes to news about internet startups, web trends and innovations, blogs are a way better source than traditional media. If you want to know what’s happening on the web, there are some key blogs that should form part of your daily reading. Most serious online fundis use at least 2 or 3 of the blogs below on a regular basis. They are a great indication of online trends and a good source for ideas: ReadWriteWeb: It’s an intellectual take on social media trends, exploring web technology, news, reviews and analysis, run by Richard MacManus and Marshall Kirkpatrick....

  • How to approach content in the digital age

    The phrase "User Generated Content" (UGC) has always been a troubled notion. At its heart it emphasises a divide between the user and the professional, with the implication that users have their place, and the professionals have theirs. Perhaps the aversion to this phrase stems from the fact that it is so simplistic. It doesn't really capture the diversity of a site's readership or community. The simple fact is: Not all readers are equal. Not all readers want to write or contribute, some are quite happy to lurk behind the scenes. There also may be expert contributors in your site's...

  • my.barackobama.com: Paradigm-shifting social networking

    The Barack Obama website is paradigm shifting for politics online. It's no doubt the most sophisticated political party website ever created. Apart from Obama's social media presence, the site's social network my.barackobama.com (or "myBo") is particularly ground-breaking. I recently signed up to it and found it so impressive that it puts some dedicated social network sites to shame. It's also no surprise then that the man behind the Obama social network site is none other than Chris Hughes, the 24-year-old co-founder of Facebook (Source: Wired). I'm of the school of thought that all serious web businesses should have social network layers....

  • Ten elements for your website's success

    Did this presentation a while back at the Highway Africa conference. (The big numbers were a bit chopped on Slideshare, but it's still readable.) It's essentially a talk I gave on the ten key elements for your website business' success. Comments welcome. The Numbers GameView SlideShare presentation or Upload your own. (tags: website strategy) var vglnk={key:"cc324b6567a9637aa0ff15bc9564b2a5"};!function(e,a){var t=e.createElement(a);t.type="text/javascript",t.async=!0,t.src="//cdn.viglink.com/api/vglnk.js";var n=e.getElementsByTagName(a);n.parentNode.insertBefore(t,n)}(document,"script");

  • Online advertising: What media sites are earning

    This is a slide from a recent Digital conference in Amsterdam. Looking mainly at newspapers, it shows growth in online advertising revenue in 2007, and demonstrates online ad revenue as a percentage of total gross revenue. var vglnk={key:"cc324b6567a9637aa0ff15bc9564b2a5"};!function(e,a){var t=e.createElement(a);t.type="text/javascript",t.async=!0,t.src="//cdn.viglink.com/api/vglnk.js";var n=e.getElementsByTagName(a);n.parentNode.insertBefore(t,n)}(document,"script");

  • Sequoia Capital on startups and the economic downturn

    This presentation from famous Silicon Valley Venture Capital firm, Sequoia Capital, is a must-see. It explains the effects of the economic downturn on venture capital and internet startups. The news obviously isn't good, as investors will shun typically risky online startups, unless they are entities that can turn faster, if not immediate, profits. There’s quite a bit of information on what went wrong in the economy, why the recovery is going to take some time, and what startups can do to survive. Sequoia reckon that startups without at least a year's worth of cash in the bank are in trouble....

  • What economic downturn?

    Could the online advertising industry escape these turbulent economic times relatively unscathed? Commentators say online advertising may buck an economic downturn, and – controversially – even gain from it. An article in the Financial Times notes that pressure on companies to cut costs as the economy softens could "hasten the switch in spending from traditional media to more targeted and measurable digital forms". Citing the sub-prime crisis in the US, the FT notes that mortgage lenders (those of them that are left) are turning to online channels to help them weather the storm. The authoritative eMarketer.com concurs with this view, emphasising...

  • Social media for companies: What's working?

    If you want to know whose using Social Media in the corporate world, here is a list of 35+ Examples of Corporate Social Media in Action from Mashable. If that's not enough for you, here is a further list of 130 Social Media Marketing examples from major companies. Some are surprising, for example even British Airways as is getting in on the act with a Twitter account listing flight specials. It got me thinking about who is doing what locally. Here's my own list that I came up with (please feel free to add or let me know of any...

  • Dan Gillmor in Cape Town: Transparency is key

    Pics by Tino Kreutzer Dan Gillmor, author of We Media and acclaimed citizen media advocate, was in Cape Town to speak at the University of Cape Town's Business School about the publishing revolution of the digital age, also known as Citizen Media. Gillmor is co-founder of Dopplr, a social networking service that allows users to create itineraries of their travel plans and an investor in Jimmy Wales' Wikia. We know that media no longer controls the information highways. People are bypassing big media via their own blogs, broadcasts and networks -- and that is altering the very fabric of society in...

  • Where they're clicking: Heat map of 24.com homepage

    Below is a heatmap of the 24.com homepage, as analysed by Tim Gregory who is production manager at 24.com. He ran the page through Click Density, with some interesting results... var vglnk={key:"cc324b6567a9637aa0ff15bc9564b2a5"};!function(e,a){var t=e.createElement(a);t.type="text/javascript",t.async=!0,t.src="//cdn.viglink.com/api/vglnk.js";var n=e.getElementsByTagName(a);n.parentNode.insertBefore(t,n)}(document,"script");

  • Web technologies: Separating reality from hype

    Got this interesting graph from Gartner, which puts it all in perspective. (Via Techcrunch). var vglnk={key:"cc324b6567a9637aa0ff15bc9564b2a5"};!function(e,a){var t=e.createElement(a);t.type="text/javascript",t.async=!0,t.src="//cdn.viglink.com/api/vglnk.js";var n=e.getElementsByTagName(a);n.parentNode.insertBefore(t,n)}(document,"script");

  • Citizen journalism & the gatekeepers

    As the web 2.0 movement rolled on, the excitable hype mongers were already reading media’s last rites. The zealots proclaimed that the publishing model had changed, pointing to examples like Wikipedia, digg.com and the blogging movement. It’s now all about user-generated content and the wisdom of crowds, they say. The centralised gate-keeping media model is losing its relevance in favour of a decentralised model. Big Media, R.I.P. These so-called experts put used-car salespeople to shame. They operate on fear – fear that media owners are not “getting it” or are being left behind. Everyone is looking for an angle in this...