South Africa

Print vs Online: Interview with Marketing Mix

Just did this interview with Marketing Mix on the (yawn) print vs online debate…

What is your opinion on the general attitude of the newspaper industry towards the merging of online and print?

How far is SA behind (in general) when it comes to combining online and print?

What ‘cool’ things do you have on the M&G site that no one else does, and how are the ‘cool’ things working out – are people using RSS feeds etc, for example?

What are the problems/challenges facing publishers that actually want to embrace online?

Should SA publishers be worried about online? Is it a threat?

What is hampering the real growth of online at the moment?

How long do you think we have until online starts eating into circulation/ad revenue the way it has in the US and UK?

What are the next steps in terms of technology and integrating print and online that publishers need to embrace and use?

How can an online presence be using for success brand-building both for the newspaper itself as well as advertising clients?

Has online revenue started to make a positive impact on the overall bottom line?

Are clients and ad agencies geared for an online presence? If no, what needs to be done (by all parties) to ensure online ad revenue success?

What are the differences between having a print publication and an online site – ie what do publishers/journalists need to learn and understand about online in order to meet consumer expectations?

What is your opinion on citizen journalism and its part?

What do you do about premium news (subscribing mostly?) as most people won’t pay for the privilege esp as they can normally find the stories elsewhere on the internet? But how viable is free content?

Is there a threat yet to classifieds (print and online) from sites such as craigslist, and how do you combat this?

Answers over the page…..

Internet useage in Africa: Top countries

It’s time to wake up, Telkom.

Here are the top ranking internet countries in Africa by internet hosts. I got this from Arthur Goldstuck’s comprehensive report, which you can get on his website.

Shows that, as a continent, we have a lot to catch up still. Thankfully the consensus is that South Africa is now set for more expansion, although expensive telecoms are still holding us back. A new challenger to the fixed line monopoly Telkom has been licensed but that is going to take a while to get up and ready and competitive. Broadband is beginning to make an impact here — but again it is expensive (thanks Telkom and cellphone companies).

At one stage South Africa was ranked 11th in the world, but we lost ground as a result of the cost of internet here which ranks among the highest in the world — it’s a wonder that South Africa, despite this, is still by far the top internet country in Africa.

Hopefully Telkom and the cellphone companies will wake up and realise how important ICT is for development of this country. They hopefully will realise that they can make profits without profiteering. South African cell companies (along with our banks who have amongst the highest charges in the world) rank among the most profitable in the world and appear to have so much excess cash that they are aggressive multinationals, moving into countries all over Africa, the Middle East and elsewhere. It’s great for the country, but what about the South African consumer and economy. Give us a break.

Top African internet countries (by internet hosts)

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