I won the "Best Business Blog" category at the 2009 South African Blog Awards!

Over 4000 blogs were nominated in this year's awards, and over 25 000 people voted.

I also scored some free goodies with the award, including:
  • A subscription to the Sunday Times  (I still love reading the newspaper in print as a special treat, so this is a super prize for me);
  •  A subscription to Encyclomedia (a PR match-making tool that helps local businesses get press releases out to the right journalists);
  • 12 SA Blog Awards branded Kika-sacks (I'll use one of them next time I hit the beach and give the rest away with reckless abandon); and
  •  "Black Bottle" whisky.

As much as I enjoying getting free stuff, by far the most enjoyable part of the experience has been all the congratulatory messages I've received on Twitter, Facebook, Email and SMS. Thanks everyone! This award and the whole experience of winning it is very encouraging for me as a blogger.
Kelele Africa

Kelele, an annual African bloggers’ conference, was announced yesterday at BarCamp Africa at the GooglePlex in San Francisco. This exciting event will be held in a different African city each year and run by an organising committee in that city. Kelele will be held for the first time in August 2009 in Nairobi, Kenya.

Daudi Were is producing the event, along with an organizing committee of bloggers from all over Africa. This includes Ndesanjo Macha, Erik Hersman, Nii Simmonds, Mshairi, Sami Ben Gharbia, and me.

Why Kelele?

Kelele is the Kiswahili word for noise. We are organising a gathering of African bloggers in the tradition of historical African societies where everyone has a voice.

The specific theme of Kelele ’09 Nairobi is Beat Your Drum – which connects the traditional Africa method of getting your message across vast distances – the talking drums – to the 21st century and the tools we use today, blogs and the Internet.

Sponsorship

We are working to make Kelele a world-class conference, but in order to do this we will need Sponsorship to cover costs such as delegate's flights, venue, AV and bandwidth.

We’d like to invite all organizations with an interest in blogging, Africa and citizen media to become a sponsor of the inaugural African Bloggers Conference: Kelele!

There are a variety of ways that you can become involved as a sponsor for Kelele - your contribution doesn’t only need to be financial in nature. If you’d like to find out more about the sponsorship opportunities, please email daudi.were@gmail.com
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AuthorDave Duarte
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Wine Marketing Course

My mentor and friend, Graham Knox, owner of Stormhoek Wines, has put together a remarkable wine marketing course for UCT Graduate School of Business, called Dirty Hands - A Practical Approach to Wine Marketing. It aims to teach you how to be a success in the world's second most competitive industry.

It is a distinctive offering in the wine marketing education space, because it actually takes delegates through the process of wine creation, while at the same time learning how each step is a selling point. At the end of the course, you will not only have created and bottled your own wine, but you will be able to sell it too!

"What excites me about this programme", says Elaine Rumboll, Director of Exec Ed. at UCT GSB, "is the awareness that if a marketer is to understand the value proposition of wine from its making to its distribution that there will develop alongside of this stories and emotional connections which will help marketers in their distribution. To my knowledge, this approach is ground breaking and not on offer in any of the other wine marketing material I have viewed globally".

The course runs from 24th-26th June 2008, and costs R7200.

I see that Wine Country is offering a free spot on the course, click the pic, or this link to see how you can get your place sponsored.
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AuthorDave Duarte
CategoriesEducation
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Amazing Marketing MachineThe clever chaps at Springleap have come up with another killer idea to engage SA bloggers and drive lots of signups to their new site. It's called Blogger Warz, where each month two prominent SA bloggers are pitted against each other to get the most votes for their t-shirt designs.

I'm up against Mike Stopforth (with his design called "Fit-Shan") in the first round. The design I submitted was done my my talented illustrator friend, Ryno Van Niekerk. It's called "The Amazing Marketing Machine".

The story that goes with the design is as follows:

A mashup of potent technological innovations, The Amazing Marketing Machine will help any marketer be more intelligent, more playful, more out-of-this world! But if you didn’t know that you might just think it was a pile of junk. Ironic huh?

If you dig it, please go and vote it up on Springleap HERE (note, you need to register). Some lucky people might even get the opportunity to wear this awesome design if we win.
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AuthorDave Duarte
Today's my first full day back at the office. If my schedule this week is anything to go by, then 2008 is gonna rock!

Warning: The following material is some form of self-promotion, please stop reading if you're not interested in what I'm up to. I'd recommend reading it only if there's a possibility we can work together this year:)

On Thursday I'm facilitating a think tank with Dr. Marjolijn Dijterhuys, 13 MBA students from the University of Amsterdam and 6 accomplished South African ICT entreneurs. There's going to be lots of learning on all sides as we seek to uncover innovative opportunities for European business in South Africa, and South African business in Europe.

On Friday I'm off to Joburg for some planning around the iCommons summit in Japan in July, and to celebrate Heather's birthday!

I'm running part of a course at UCT this year for over 1000 commerce students! It's going to be based on the Attention Economics course I ran for the second year business science students last year.

I'll be continuing my work with UCT Graduate School of Business - guest lecturing on the MBA and various other Executive Education programmes, as well as running Nomadic Marketing in April and September this year.

I'm also really excited to launch two new ventures this year with my partners: Huddlemind Labs (where we'll be doing stuff to help people apply innovative business strategies - mainly consulting, publishing and events); and the new version of Muti (which is going to take the core concept and make it more useful for businesses and other niche communities). I'll make the respective announcements and introduce my partners on these projects when we launch - which should be this month.

Besides that, I'm still managing a few corporate software development jobs. With my client's permission I'll share these with you if they're going to be made public. I'm always looking for good web developers and designers to work with.
I'm also available as a speaker if you're holding a conference, or a facilitator if you're doing a workshop.

Please drop me a mail if you think we can work together, intern at any of the businesses, or can provide any related services. Info at daveduarte.co.za
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AuthorDave Duarte
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This is my realisation as I've been waiting for my schedule to magically clear up enough for me to write a blog post:

I'm not going to have time for it unless I make time for it.

So what's my 3 main motivators for blogging:

  1. Each new post can introduce me to a new person or people through emails and comments

  2. Each new post can add momentum to ideas that I support

  3. Each new post reminds the people who already subscribe to this blog by RSS that I still exist:)


Anyway, this is my long-winded way of announcing that I'm back in the game and will be blogging more regularly going forward.
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AuthorDave Duarte
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