Seminar tips UH on Internet niche

by Liz Carter

Daily Cougar Staff

Cyberspace, Web sites and the Internet.

These were only a few of the discussion topics at the recent Internet Executive Workshop sponsored by the University of Houston Department of Marketing.

"A lot of people have never used the Internet, but knew it was important to be there," said Bette Stead, a professor of marketing in the College of Business Administration and the director of the UH Business Information Center.

The workshop was designed to help executives gather information on the Internet that would make their companies more competitive. A panel of technology and corporate experts spoke to executives who were simultaneously hooked up to the Internet.

Speakers at the conference included Amy Robinovitz, the Houston Chronicle's interactive marketing manager, and Mark Ladin, a Compaq Computer Corp. competitive information analyst.

All the speakers emphasized the importance of possessing a Web site, a billboard in cyberspace, to be competitive in the business world, Stead said.

The Internet has changed the way traditional media outlets approach news coverage and distribute their product.

Although the workshop was directed toward managers and executives, Stead said everyone needs to be familiar with the Internet.

"I worry about UH students," she said. "A lot of them are graduating without using the Internet. It will be hard for most students to become competitive in the work force without knowledge of the Internet."

Many businesses now have their own Web sites to give customers information and to receive input on their products, Stead said.

For example, she said, the Wall Street Journal offers business news that is updated every few hours for customers who want to be competitive.

The UH Information Technology Department's Support Services offers a one-hour introductory program to familiarize students with the Internet.

For more information, students can call 743-1411.

Visit The Daily Cougar