Posted October 31, 2007 3:00 pm by with 5 comments

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By Manoj Jasra

image Microsoft Corp. and SEMPO Institute,, announced today an education alliance in which personnel from 20,000 affiliates of the MSN search engine will have access to SEMPO Institute’s online learning program designed to provide in-depth knowledge of best-practices in search engine marketing.

As part of the new alliance, personnel from the MSN affiliates will be able to take SEMPO Institute’s Fundamentals of Search Marketing class.  SEMPO Institute also offers online classes in Advanced Search Engine Optimization and Advanced Search Advertising.  Fundamentals consists of 14 lessons intended to give the student a high level understanding of the essentials of search engine marketing.

Since SEMPO Institute launched in early 2007, the student feedback has been very positive – 80% say they would recommend the Fundamentals course. “All companies need the fundamentals of search marketing in order to implement an e-marketing strategy,” says SEMPO President Jeffrey Pruitt. 

Additionally Microsoft has chosen to renew its Platinum sponsorship level for another two years. “The participation of companies such as Microsoft helps SEMPO be in tune with the needs of our professional members, and helps to generate innovative programs such as the SEMPO Institute,” – SEMPO President Jeffrey Pruitt. 

Yesterday I was able to catch up with SEMPO’s Manager of Business Development, Katie Donovan, to get first hand insight on the latest news:

[Manoj Jasra]:
How does SEMPO’s new alliance with Microsoft help SEMPO?

[Katie Donovan]: Microsoft has been a sponsor of SEMPO for some time. Microsoft’s sponsorship renewal for another two years indicates how important the search engines find SEMPO as a professional organization whose members come from more than 630 companies in over 30 countries. We are able to provide access, insight, and feedback from the professionals who are using the search engines. In the same manner, providing access to the search engines is an amazing benefit for our members.
The alliance for our Fundamentals of Search Marketing course to Microsoft affiliates help SEMPO Institute grow awareness of our courses very quickly. Microsoft’s support of the course for their affiliate education program gives added credibility to SEMPO Institute’s courses as an critical resource for search marketers.

[Manoj Jasra]: Is SEMPO actively pursuing alliances, is this something Yahoo or Google would be interested in?

[Katie Donovan]: SEMPO has various alliances and sponsor relationships. Microsoft is SEMPO’s Platinum Sponsor and as such benefits from perks not available to all sponsors. Microsoft and SEMPO may opt to expand this relationship to additional courses and/or affiliates. SEMPO may also decide to roll this type of program out to Yahoo or Google at a later dates. For the time being, as our Platinum Sponsor Microsoft is enjoying a courtesy period of exclusivity.

[Manoj Jasra]: With 80% of people saying that they would recommend SEMPO’s fundamentals course, how will SEMPO try to grow that number even higher?

[Katie Donovan]: SEMPO Institute strives to meet the students and the employers needs with our courses. We are happy with the 80% rate of recommendation but want to grow it even higher. We currently are conducting research to see what adjustments can be made to help grow that number. We will review the results and make informed decisions when the results are available.

About Manoj Jasra

Manoj Jasra is the Director of Technology at Enquiro Search Solutions and has been in the Search Marketing Industry since 2002.  Manoj also authors the Blog: Web Analytics World which offers his insight on Search Marketing, Web Analytics and Technology.