In this economic recession, business owners and students are looking to acquire relevant skills that will help them succeed in a weak economy. At UCSB Extension, enrollment has been on the rise for internet marketing classes designed to teach students powerful and cost-effective business solutions and strategies that use the web.

According to UCSB Extension instructor Lorrie Thomas, web marketing can propel businesses forward for a fraction of the costs of traditional advertising mediums. An internet marketing veteran and self-proclaimed “web marketing therapist,’’ Thomas also recommends that businesses take advantage of this economic slump to get creative and implement smart marketing that will sustain them through the current economic downturn.

Thomas’s Web Marketing Applications extension course addresses the most current principles and practices of Internet marketing, including search engine marketing, pay-per-click advertising and email marketing. Students learn how marketing on the Web can help build brand awareness, attract shoppers, enhance customer loyalty, and capture market share. The next course begins Thursday, May 7.

Another class, Social Media Marketing, was introduced this spring via the extension program. Thomas and a colleague, Emilia Doerr, co-taught the course, which was designed to help students learn how to use popular, no-cost social media platforms like blogs and Facebook as marketing tools.

“I can highly recommend the Social Media Marketing class to anybody who wants to boost their business and create a plan for cross-discipline coordination that drives growth,” said Ramon de la Fuente, a product manager for Santa Barbara-based Sonos, the leading developer of wireless multi-room music systems for the home. “I now have a much better understanding of how marketing has moved from ‘pushing’ out messages to creating and fostering relationships that ultimately provide better solutions for both businesses and their customers.” 

UCSB Extension offers continuing education via evening and weekend courses to students, professionals, business owners and anyone looking for professional training, career advancement or a practical education to help boost their business. For course and enrollment information, visit

Noozhawk staff writer Laurie Jervis can be reached at

Laurie Jervis

Laurie Jervis, Noozhawk Columnist

Laurie Jervis can be reached at The opinions expressed are her own.