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Socila media guru John Popham in Louth for onlincolnshire campaign

A social media guru whose aim is to get rural communities online will deliver a free workshop in Louth on how using the internet can help boost businesses in Lincolnshire.

John Popham has been brought in to help inspire businesses in East Lindsey, Boston and Lincoln as part of Lincolnshire County Council’s onlincolnshire campaign.

John is the Chief Executive of Citizens’ Interactive Broadcasting and developed #twicket –the world’s first live broadcast of a village cricket match which became a global phenomenon after Stephen Fry showed his support on Twitter.

The November Broadband Business Benefits workshops will help businesses understand the potential uses of the Internet, learn more about applications such as cloud computing, access new and free resources and learn how to put new skills into practice.

“The Internet is becoming an ever more important part of most people’s lives, and if you’re not online you’re missing out on so much,” said John, who is currently working to develop online tools for the Big Society initiative, including Big Society Wiki and a Big Society Social App Store.

“If your customers are online – and most of them will be – but you are not, you’re passing over the opportunity to reach out and connect with them. There are so many free tools, particularly social media platforms, you can use to engage with people, build your reputation and seek feedback.

“People tend to do business with people they know and trust. Companies should see the online world like a digital village where they can get to know their customers, and their customers can get to know and trust them.”

The sessions are part of work being carried out by CDI Alliance on behalf of the onlincolnshire project to build the campaign for better rural broadband in some of the more remote parts of the county. They are being financed with help from the European Regeneration and Development Fund (ERDF).

The first will offer an overview of broadband capability. Businesses will be asked to explain how they use the Internet and what difficulties they have faced in the past before hearing in more detail about the benefits including e-commerce, flexible working and online conferencing using tools such as Skype, Facetime and Google Talk.

The workshops will take place from 1pm to 4pm on Thursday November 8 and Tuesday November 27 at Fairfield Enterprise Centre in Louth.

To book a free place on the course visit www.onlincolnshire.org

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