A team from DNS Africa Ltd attended the Africa Internet Summit, in particular, the AfTLD ccTLD Marketing Workshop last week in Kampala, Uganda.
We set out to share our experience in the African Market through launching our very own reseller product, Gateway, as well as to introduce our new user-friendly end-user based platform, TopDog. Throughout the week, we engaged with Marketing Managers, Techies and Administrators of ccTLDs all over Africa, as well as many individuals who work and take interest in the domain name industry.
From day 1, our schedules were packed with interactive talks, workshops, group discussions and walkthroughs surrounding the marketing of ccTLDS in an African context and how this is different from general marketing. We also engaged in the various AGMs held during the week and met with attendees from around the world who had come together to share their experiences and insights into the new, fast-paced and developing IT industry in Africa.
We attended sessions driven by leaders in the African Domain industry, such as Barrack Otieno, Dr Alex Corenthin and Abdalla Omari (AfTLD), Bob Ochieng (ICANN), Dr Matthew Zook (ZookNIC), Joe Alagna (Afilias) and Mr Lucky Masilela (ZACR) just to name a few.
On day 3, Kilana Chohan presented a case study of DNS Africa’s experience as one of the only ICANN accredited registrars in Africa through our journey of launching our Gateway Reseller Portal. She also outlined the challenges we’ve faced through this process and this sparked some thought-provoking discussions around the topic where, thereafter, the panel brought a diverse set of challenges and conclusions to the table which will be useful for overcoming future dilemmas. She gave an overview of the multitude of marketing strategies we’ve implemented in order to expand our registrar and reseller base and these ideas were well- received by the session attendees.
On day 4, the AfTLD room was filled with eager attendees awaiting David Pealls’ workshop on the ins and out of the Gateway Portal as guided the team through setting up their Gateway accounts and registering and spinning a personalised .africa domain. He also showcased our new TopDog App – the more user-friendly and end-user based reseller portal. Although time was limited, the workshop was a great success thanks to the teams in Mauritius and South Africa providing background support.
Following this, we attended the annual AGMM and were then treated to an evening of traditional Ugandan food and entertainment at the gala evening.
Day 5 kicked off with the awards ceremony where the AfTLD session attendees were rewarded certificates for the ccTLD Marketing course and we engaged in in-depth conversations and debates around the topics and talks we had attended over the past week.
The conference was insightful and interactive and we gained a-lot of exposure and widened our perspective of ccTLD Marketing and the African Domain industry as a whole, as well as gaining a much needed break from the Johannesburg cold!
We look forward to continuing our journey as a registrar in the African market and using conferences such as the Africa Internet Summit and the Africa DNS Forum later this year to broaden our registrar and reseller base and to continually develop new marketing strategies which extend primarily to our African Market.