Ferdie Bester
Ferdie Bester

Four marketing and media predictions for 2008

While 2007 was one of the most exciting years in the online marketing space internationally, I’ve been wondering what 2008 will hold in store for South Africa.

Here are a few of my thoughts on what we can expect:

  • 1. Watch out for Google South Africa. A local Google office will open in February 2008 to focus on mobile, broadband penetration and advertiser development. With a formal agreement with Vodacom already in place we can expect to see some interesting developments.
  • 2. Vodacom is due to move into the social media space. In 2008 it will launch two new products: the first one is “Meep”, a presence-based instant messaging service that will be a direct competitor for MXit. “TheGRID” is a location-based social-networking service available on cellphones, which will enable users to find friends by seeing their physical location on a street map. It will be interesting to see what new advertising options will become available on these platforms and how the incumbent MXit and Facebook will react to this new player.
  • 3. The number of broadband users will continue to increase due to Neotel’s launch of consumer voice and data services and the aggressive marketing and pricing by all the wireless and mobile phone operators. This is great news for any online publisher or merchant, as the increase in bandwidth will see an increase in web usage and allow rich content (such as video) delivery.
  • 4. Telkom media is set to become a satellite broadcaster in mid-2008. With a budget of just over R7-billion it will be the only realistic competitor to MultiChoice. It should be interesting to see how MultiChoice will respond to this new competition and what Telkom will offer to grow its subscriber base. Everyone from subscribers to advertisers will benefit from this launch.
  • On the international online marketing front there have been a number of massive industry acquisitions and mergers. Google bought DoubleClick Performics, Yahoo bought RealMedia and Microsoft bought aQuantive. The combined value of these three transactions was about $10-billion. The logic behind these acquisitions is to integrate media with the latest technology to provide advertisers with a one-stop online advertising solution.

    In South Africa the online marketing industry will continue to grow and we can look forward to some interesting developments in 2008.

    • sidakwa

      dude leave the web 2 stuff for the teen boppers and child adults , you might throw elephant sized adverts at that demographic group , but the question is how many of them do respond to those adverts.

      question to really ask is google going to implement google checkout with south african banks , and is google going to start google shopping in south africa .

      in england right now we been seeing the partnership of google and some of the mobile operators for a while , the majority of the apps offered have failed to spark interest with the exception of ring tone and mobile downloads . how much is voda charging for music downloads .

      skype was is now standard on all 3 g networks here in uk , is vodacom implementing it and are they going to charge for it .

      are they any traffics that are going to drop , coz in comparison with europe , south african mobile traffics are expensive

    • http://vincentmaher.com/ Vincent Maher

      @Sidakwa – actually South Africa has some of the cheapest in-bundle mobile broadband pricing in the world at around 19c per Mb – check the MTN price list and this article on MyADSL.

    • http://www.webaddict.co.za rafiq

      If you combine 1 and 2… will we be seeing TheGRID on open social?

      If not, why not?

    • AP

      Some random points …

      – Not quite getting the “predications” part of this, all of the above is bound to happen, only unknown is the timing.

      – Tried theGrid on Opera Mini, it sucks.

      – Cannot see how a mobile app can compete facebook (which is mostly web based)?

    • Craig

      I would think South Africa is ripe for a decent mobile web-device (dare I say iPhone – or rather iPhone-like. A usable portable web device with emphasis on the usable bit).

      If you can offer that with a limitless data usage package (this is key) for a reasonable price you don’t need to bother with half-baked mobile replicas of popular websites.