Archive for April, 2008

Website Designer California
April 30, 2008

Namibia: Boom in Online Marketing

Online scouting for that perfect property has become all the craze before investing in real estate.

When doing an online search for property and real estate in Namibia, it becomes clear that those in the industry have realised the importance of having a presence on the Web.

Even major South African property agencies have branched out, even though mostly virtual, and claimed a stake of the Namibian cyber property market.

Residential property developers have been leading this trend by posting and gauging interest in new developments through websites and listings on the more established portals.

Websites like, even though run by South African companies, have extensive listings of Namibian properties.

On the local front, gives buyers a comprehensive view of developments.

With many buyers, across retail sectors, turning to the Internet to save time and money, the online listing and marketing of property is set to continue to grow.

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April 29, 2008

Online Earth Day Promo a Web 2.0 Success

IdeaStar client TCP Inc. of Aurora, OH, celebrated Earth Day 2008 with an online video event produced by the IdeaStar Spinfield team. The manufacturer of energy-saving compact fluorescent light bulbs ( CFLs ) presented illumiNation, CFL Education for a Better Tomorrow four times throughout the day. Many viewers pre-registered to watch the 45-minute event focusing on CFL facts, myths, and misconceptions.

“The results exceeded my expectations,” Michelle Heffner, TCP E-Business manager, said. Prior to the Earth Day event, TCP sent out e-mails to notify its sales reps, utility contacts, consumers, and other industry professionals. Registrations continued to come in throughout Earth Day, for a total of 202 – although registration was not needed to view the video.

Approximately 400 people viewed the video during Earth Day. There were 318 visitors from the U.S., 50 from Canada, a dozen from Europe, and several visits from China, Turkey, Brazil, Hong Kong, India, South Africa and others. The video will be divided into three to five minute educational segments and posted on the TCP Web site and a TCP YouTube channel for future viewing. Visitors to the illumiNation site may currently view information regarding CFL recycling, where to buy CFLs, CFls and mercury, how to clean up a broken CFL and more.

IdeaStar Online Marketing Manager Steve Lamb said online marketing played an important part in the Web presentations. “Social networks like MySpace, Facebook and Care2 played a key role in getting the word out to the public in a viral effort. E-mail marketing with IdeaStar’s Pulsar e-mail marketing system enabled TCP to make their reps, distributors, educators and others aware of the event. Pulsar also enabled us to send reminder messages and follow-up surveys to all the people who pre-registered and opted-in to this illumiNation event.” He added environmentally-conscious bloggers were contacted to help with promotion, and possibly blog about it afterwards.

During the presentations, TCP representatives answered questions from viewers through an online customer service chat program. Most questions involved where to recycle CFLs or where they can be purchased.

“This entire project is a perfect example of how a global corporation like TCP can utilize Web 2.0 to target consumers that they would have never been able to reach through traditional media outlets,” Steve said.

“Earth Day 2009 will be even better. We have a whole year to plan, plus a list of interested people to market to,” Michelle said. “We’ll have time to do our promos, e-mail campaigns, blogs – all that Web 2.0 stuff which works so well.”

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Los Angeles website design
April 28, 2008

Web 2.0 Expo Reveals: Mobile Is The New Desktop, Social Nets The New Media Companies

Remember, you read it here first. Wolfe’s three laws of the brave new Web 2.0 world are: Mobile is the new desktop, the home page is dead, and social networks like Facebook and MySpace presage the media company of the future. These catchy Web 2.0 catch-phrases popped into my head during a heavy week of session-sitting at the Web 2.0 Expo in San Francisco. Here’s why I’m optimistic that those of us who are ready to embrace the virtual future are going to be in for a fun ride.

These aphorisms are part of my attempt to make sense of the rapidly shifting playing field, in which those of us who’ve spent the last several years ramping up our blogging efforts — and patting ourselves on the virtual back for being in the forefront of the new-media revolution — find all of a sudden that we’re no longer quite so cutting edge.

Nope, that title would go to the folks who’ve put together the powerhouses that are the online social networks. I’m talking about sites such as Facebook, MySpace, Orkut, and Hi5 (the latter is the Spanish-speaking world’s popular destination.) Hence my first new-age Web law:

Social networks are the new media companies.

Only a few months ago, I was mightily perplexed by the popularity of sites like Facebook and MySpace. However, I figured that, after people grew tired of farting around with pictures or movie quizzes (or, for MySpace users, when they reached puberty), they’d move on to “real” sites. You know, sites like this one.

Savvily, the people at Facebook, MySpace et al, appear to have thought of this, too. And they’ve got a solution. They’ve opened up their social networks to developers, who can build their own apps and post them so users can put them on their own FB and MS pages. There’s even an open API for developers, called OpenSocial, which most of the social nets are supporting, to a greater or lesser extent.

There’s another wrinkle, which is that developers can put their own ads inside the social-net apps they build. This is a method of monetizing one’s social-app, akin to whatGoogle (NSDQ: GOOG) allows when you drive traffic from your Web site to its Ad-Sense advertisements.

So now kids in Kansas or moms on the Upper West Side of Manhattan have the tools (OpenSocial) and the incentive (ads) to build FB and MS apps. Scarily, for the Time-Warners of the world, there’s nothing to keep these table-top developers for building apps which are more popular and attract more users those from the big guys.

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Proffesional website Design Torrance
April 26, 2008

Web 2.0: Changing Affiliate Marketing

Sometimes you just need to change the rules to stay on message. So when a panel of affiliate marketing experts and consultants convened Tuesday to discuss their industry and how it can evolve and mesh with Web 2.0 ideas, we had to know more.

Joy Culbertson, a member of our production team, was on hand at the Web 2.0 Expo in San Francisco to give us the play-by-play on this one. Her friend Lisa Picarille of Revenue magazine was moderating the panel, which included Stephanie Agresta (Affiliate Karma), Cam Balzer (DoubleClick Performics), Sam Harrelson (Sam Harrelson Consulting), and Jeremy Wright (b5media).

Affiliate marketing is a business model based on earning revenue by driving traffic to Web sites. The industry is comprised of publications, networks, and online marketers. What follows is Culbertson’s report:

Though often thought of as innovators and risk-takers in the Internet marketing world (for example, they were the first industry to buy up domain names for profit), affiliate marketers are also challenged with a “scrappy” reputation and a branding problem. To attract and recruit more affiliates, some marketers are rebranding their companies using euphemistic titles such as “Performance Marketing.”

And some are working to gain (potential customer) trust and legitimization by moving into new, more personal areas of the Web, such as podcasts, video blogs, and other social media interaction.

Panelists gave an array of examples of marketers who have successfully tapped into Web 2.0 technologies to gain revenue.

These include retailers:

  • Jones Soda has a popular community site. It uses contests and forums and more to create a buzz.
  • Kaboodle is a community site popular with tweens, who have user-generated an entire retail site about shopping (bought by Hearst Interactive Media in August ’07).
  • At, the CEO has an entertaining tweet stream that has attracted more than 2,000 followers with his charismatic personality and things like shoe giveaways. Gimmicky, yes, but 2,000 followers see it and many of them blog about it.
  • Jet Blue and Southwest Airlines have active Twitter accounts and blogs, plus contests, flight updates, and customer comments.

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April 24, 2008

FastWeb Selects WebTrends to Optimize Online Marketing Campaigns

PORTLAND, Ore.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–WebTrends, a leading provider of Web analytics and online marketing solutions, today announced that FastWeb, one of Italys largest broadband carriers, has selected WebTrends Analytics On Demand and WebTrends Dynamic Search to optimize their online marketing initiatives.

WebTrends Analytics provides FastWeb an in-depth view of the progress and results of online campaigns, to better understand how their visitors interact with their web sites. It also delivers immediate visibility into the return on investment (ROI) of online marketing initiatives. WebTrends Dynamic Search, a paid search optimization solution, works continuously to monitor, measure and refine the four elements that principally affect paid search advertising: keywords, creative, position and landing page. These combined solutions enable FastWeb to get real-time control on the effectiveness of its promotional messages, permitting performance optimization that enables a superior online experience for their visitors.

We are proud to work with FastWeb, said Tracie Caroopen, WebTrends Territory Manager, Italy. The in-depth experience WebTrends has working with telecommunications companies, and our team of experienced support and account management professionals, has allowed us to immediately assist FastWeb to achieve the healthy goals they have set for their online marketing initiatives.

FastWeb like other firms in Italy or around the world are looking for fast and economical ways to drive revenue. They also want to immediately measure the results of their campaigns, to permit mid-course corrections. FastWeb, like other WebTrends customers have told us that they are increasingly shifting their marketing budgets to online initiatives because their managers are demanding demonstrable ROI. Our solutions not only allow them to demonstrate results fast, they are key to their campaign optimization efforts, said Kathleen Brush, CMO, WebTrends.

About FastWeb

FastWeb is the second largest fixed line telephone operator in Italy. Since its foundation in Milan in 1999, FastWeb has invested over 3.6 billion euros to create a next-generation optical fibre network that today exceeds 26,000 kilometers. Now present in over 150 metropolitan areas, FastWeb is the first company in the world to use a technological model that combines the extensive use of internet protocol (IP) to broadcast voice, video and data by using the optical fibre and xDSL technology. With a customer base of over 1.3 million units, FastWeb offers families a wide range of integrated services for fixed telephony, fast Internet and TV on a single cable. FastWeb is recognized as a top-quality provider for reliable and competitive telecommunications services, and is a premium provider for the Italian government. FastWeb is quoted on the Milan Stock Exchange since March 2000 and included in the S&P Mib40, following a tender offer in 2007, FastWebs 82% is owned by Swisscom.

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Proffesional website Design Torrance
April 22, 2008

Companies shun hosted online marketing

Only one in four companies would consider going to an external provider for managed hosting services, even though online marketing now plays an important role in the communication strategies of most businesses.

A poll conducted by managed hosting provider NetBenefit at the recent Technology for Marketing and Advertising show in London asked attendees a series of questions about online marketing campaigns.

Over three quarters of respondents run a monthly or quarterly online campaign, of which 86% run e-mail marketing campaigns, 78% website banners and 75% specific landing pages for particular campaigns.

However, many enterprises fail to ensure that the hosting platform behind their online marketing activity is reliable, robust and able to stand up to the inevitable peaks and troughs in traffic.

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Affordable Proffesional Web Design
April 21, 2008

Get a jump on the web

CASH-strapped small businesses know a website will open them up to the world – but too often they skimp on marketing and it fails.

Internet expert Jasmine Batra said it did not have to be so difficult.

“A website can be such a level-playing field and small business can compete against the big corporates,” she said.

Ms Batra, the director of Arrow Internet Marketing, said there were measures businesses could take to optimise their presence on the internet.

Her own company was ranked first for searches on for “SEO (search engine optimisation)company” thanks to clever use of optimisation.

Ms Batra said experts could identify what people were searching for and how best the small business could tap into that demand.

One step was to find out what search words people were using when looking for goods or services.

It helped, she said, to put yourself in their shoes. For instance, were people searching for “used baby goods” or “second hand baby goods”.

She said when websites were developed they generally had access to tools to track who was visiting the site.

Traffic statistics can not only show how many people are visiting but how long they stayed.

Ms Batra said people should look at this information at least once a month.

“I like to look at my traffic stats every week,” she said.

“There are lots of insights in them. If you were running a retail store you would be interested to know how many people walked in the door.”

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Advertising moves online
April 19, 2008

Delegates at the first The Marketing Show, which took place in Johannesburg this week, were told that e-marketing is fast becoming the norm as consumers increasingly flock online.

According to Tom Garrahan, CEO of AlphaQuadrant: “Today’s landscape offers us so many tools, all of which are coming into their own now. Integrating them in innovative ways is what makes marketing so exciting today.”


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Garrahan explained that not only are Internet user numbers and broadband speed increasing, but there has been an upsurge of mobile and Internet searches being done.

“Researchers are predicting that by 2009, Internet advertising would have superseded other forms of advertising in the UK,” he said.

According to David Ives, developer and platform strategy group for Microsoft SA, we are already seeing the Internet boom locally.

“Four telecoms companies (Telkom, Neotel, Vodacom and MTN) are putting in fibre optic backbones to allow for faster Internet,” he said. “As soon as broadband penetration increases, more interactive media platforms will take hold. The online marketing industry in SA is already worth $25 million.”

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Google’s Urchin 6 Arrives After Years-long Delay
April 17, 2008

A major upgrade to Google’s Urchin Web analytics server software has finally shipped after a delay of about three-and-a-half years.

Urchin 6, originally due in late 2004, is available for purchase from authorized resellers for US$2,995, Google announced Wednesday.

Google acquired Urchin Software in March 2005, and in the next two-and-a-half years placed most of its attention on the company’s Web-hosted product, the free Google Analytics.

Unlike Google Analytics, Urchin is designed to be installed on customers’ servers, an option some companies prefer for various reasons, such as hosting their data on their premises and not on the vendor’s data center.

As time passed and Google remained mum on its plans for Urchin 6, customers worried that their investment in the software would go to waste and the product would be discontinued.

After all, Urchin 5.0 shipped in mid-2003, and it had been on version 5.7 since 2005. Prior to Google’s acquisition, Urchin Software claimed having more than 20 percent of Fortune 500 companies as clients.

Google broke its silence about Urchin 6 in October of last year, when it announced that the upgrade would enter a beta testing period, dispelling concerns about the product’s future.

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AT&T is helping small businesses create their own Web sites
April 16, 2008

AT&T Inc. is unrolling a new slate of Web hosting services for small- to medium-sized businesses.

AT&T is helping small-business owners either build a new Web site or improve an existing site, sell products or services online, establish and online community, manage company e-mail, distribute digital content, host a gaming server or run a host of business applications.

AT&T Web Hosting Virtual Dedicated Server and Managed Dedicated Server products are designed for organizations that need more than shared server space and applications but aren’t large enough to justify investing in a complex multi-server environment prevalent in enterprise or large business hosting.

AT&T is marketing a variety of standard server plans for companies that run both Microsoft Windows and Red Hat Enterprise Linux platforms. The company is also providing dedicated bandwidth to Web sites.

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