GEC 1st Wednesday Club

pictures of people at the GEC networking events

Networking in Dublin 8 

Are you looking to generate leads, build business relationships and increase sales?

Come to the GEC 1st Wednesday Club on Feb 4th hosted by myself  and see how it can help your business. As it says in the name, this business networking club meets on the 1st Wednesday of every month in the Guinness Enterprise CentreIt starts at 12.30pm and finishes at 1.30pm. A free Lunch is provided in the way of sandwiches with tea and coffee.

The format of the one hour networking session is to let everyone introduce themselves, their business and who they are looking to get in touch with. Then we go around the room a second time to say who we can connect people with.

It is not always possible to connect everyone with someone on the day, however, there have been many successful connections and sales made as a result of the 1st Wednesday Club.

There is a great mixture of companies attending and it is always interesting to hear about the different businesses that are working hard around us.

We also like taking the conversations started at the 1st Wednesday Club and bringing them further online in between events. The below GEC social links can help with this and using the new dedicated 1st Wednesday club hashtag #GEC1stWC

Twitter: @GECinD8
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/GECinD8

Sarah Scannell who works alongside ‘Niamh Bushnell’, Dublin’s first Commissioner for Startups will be coming along this week to hear all about the fantastic work that you all do here at The GEC.

Attendance is a must – get the word out there about your business!

Stack your Deck with Short Stack

Short Stack is an app to allows the user to create Facebook apps, contest apps and promotions. It has a free option as well as a paid option. The user can also upgrade and downgrade at  any time with relative ease.

I’ve been  using Short Stack for the last two months and I have to say that I’ve found it very effective. I’ll admit it takes a little getting used to but once you get the hang of it you will really enjoy it.

Pros

  1. Customer Support: Anytime that I ran into some sort of difficulty while using the Short Stack app I was able to resolve the problem by either looking at their FAQ section, looking at their own tutorial videos on YouTube (which are done by staff members) or by sending them an email which they always respond to. Check out this article here from Amanda Webb of Spiderworking which shows you how to set up a Facebook competition.

 

  1. Installation: Installing your tabs from Short Stack to Facebook is really easy. You have two options. Quick Publish and Custom Publish. I would recommend that you use Custom Publish although it’s a little trickier you can do more with it. Also once you have installed your tab you can make changes to it from Short Stack and update instantly, a nice touch.  

 

  1. Access to Information: If you’re running a Facebook competition through a Short Stack tab that you’ve made, you have easy access to your entries as Short Stack gathers and stores their information for you. You also have the option to select a random winner as well as being able to export your entrants detail to an excel document. This is really useful for companies who want to contact their entrants again in the future.

Cons

  1. Limited Design Options: When choosing a theme for your tab the user is limited. As far as I know there’s no option to make a custom theme but to be fair the ones available are pretty good. If anyone knows of being able to make custom teams please feel free to let me know. Note: Short Stack has the option to add your own code but I have zero knowledge about coding :)

 

  1. Initial  Difficulty: When starting off using Short Stack I found it difficult to be honest. I have no previous experience in design or anything like that so maybe it’s just me but after a few attempts and tutorials I did get better at it. My advice would be to practice with it in your free time before you have to use it for business.

 

Overall I would recommend Short Stack to people but with the warning to practice if it is new to you. If anyone would like to recommend any similar apps or websites to Short Stack I would love to hear them.

 

Stay Zavvy,

 

Seán Carroll

Zavvy Intern 11 weeks in

As part of my Business and Management degree in the Dublin Institute of Technology I have to undertake a 16 week work placement. 16 weeks sounds like a long time but when you’re working for an amazing company like Social Zavvy the days feel like hours. As I write this I’m just about to finish up my 4th week. I’m already a quarter of the way through it. :(

I’m not much of a blogger but if you bear with me I’ll do my best to recap the last 4 weeks and to give you an overall idea of what it’s like to work for Social Zavvy.

When you hear the word intern you think of some poor guy coming in from a college and having to make coffee and file papers all day. The Social Zavvy experience is a million miles away from this. During my first week I was barely even in the office. I went to 2 seminars about digital marketing and I got to learn so much valuable information. I took particular pleasure in rubbing this in my peers’ faces when they told me about all the lovely office based activities that they were doing :) (I kid).

My second week in Social Zavvy was a lot more office based but I learned how to use some pretty cool social tools such as Hootsuite, Eventbrite and Animoto. I also got to meet our clients face to face and discuss strategies and operations. I never thought I would be getting this involved during my time in Social Zavvy.

My third and fourth weeks have been a mixed bag of office work, seminars and meeting clients. I got to attend the Irish Internet Association event on Inbound Marketing and Content Creation. At this event I got to see some of the pros in action including Kieran Flanagan from Hubspot and Alan and Siobhán from Wolfgang Digital.

The thing that I like the most about working for Social Zavvy is that I feel like an important member of the team and my opinions and ideas are always valued. I have 12 more weeks to go before I’m finished with Social Zavvy and I’m going to relish every day that I have left.

Stay Zavvy,

Sean Carroll

Social Zavvy Went Dotty at dotconf 2013

I was in attendance at the fourth dotconf seminar in the National College of Ireland on behalf of Social Zavvy. The event began at 8.30am so that meant I was up extra early, sigh, although the lack of sleep would be more than compensated in terms of learning as well as a heap of fun.

I didn’t really know what to expect before I went in to the seminar but I did a bit of research on some of the speakers and knew that I was going to be in for a great day. I arrived just before we were addressed by Robert Ward, the Director of Marketing in NCI. When I entered into the lecture hall that the event was in I was taken aback by the volume of the crowd in attendance. This fuelled my interest and made me think that this is going to be a pretty awesome event.

The MC for the event was Karlin Lillington from the Irish Times and she gave us a quick introduction before the first set of speakers.

The topics of discussion were varied and ranged from social media to cloud computing and everything inbetween. There was something there for everyone who loves a bit of tech. There was talks from people who have set up their own business in the areas that they have a passion for. They included:

They all told the audience why they started up their business as well as some of the lessons that they have learned along the way.

There was also the opportunity to attend one of a possible nine deep dives on a specific topic. I attended the Simple Analytics Dashboard deep dive with the very helpful Barry Hand from Grabone.ie

After the ‘Brownbag Lunch’ we were treated to the comedy stylings of Colm O’ Regan. I didn’t want to be late for him with the fear of being ridiculed :) Colm was hilarious and got the crowd into a more livelier mood which was a nice touch (well played dotconf).

As the afternoon went on there were some more speakers including the very entertaining Jon Morter aka ‘’the social media hellraiser’’. Jon pretty much showed us examples of big companies doing social media completely wrong and gave some great advice on how to do it right. I recommend following him and his page Condescending Corporate Brand Page for a laugh and you will actually learn a few lessons.

James Whelton in action at dotconf 2013

There was a few more speakers before the main event and keynote speaker James Whelton took to the stage. Karlin told us that they had tried to get James twice before for the dotconf but he was unavailable at both times, once was for his Leaving Cert. James is the Co-Founder of Coder Dojo and the Hello World Foundation.

James discussed the importance of the need for coding in peoples lives. He said that ‘’we learned how to read and write and now we need to learn how to code’’. He talked about all of the advantages and benefits towards society if for example doctors and lawyers were able to code. He also talked about privacy issues and gave his views on them.

James is only 20 years old but he already has accomplished so much and I can see him having a great impact on the world.

The only negative of the day was that my phone died early on and I couldn’t tweet :(

I’ll finish off this post by saying that the dotconf was a fantastic day out and I left feeling inspired having listened to so many accomplished speakers and having meet some really nice like minded individuals.

Until next year,

Stay Zavvy

Seán Carroll

Irish Internet Association: Deep Dive Event #3

Digital Marketing Mix : Deep Dive #3

Social Zavvy were in attendance at the recent Irish Internet Association (IIA) deep dive event. The theme for the day was Digital Marketing Mix and this was the third of the deep dive series so far.
The event took place in the Digital Hub on Dublin’s Crane Street. Joan Mulvihill ,the CEO of the IIA, was the MC for the day.
The first speaker of the day was Conor Mullen from RTE. Conor’s talk was entitled "Content and Context – Dispelling Some Myths about Online Display Advertising". I knew that this would be interesting after having been at the previous deep dive.
Anyone who was there would understand but anyway I digress.

To sum up Conor’s talk Display Advertising works when you have the right content in the right place. Some of the examples of incorrect Display Advertising were crazy and if you were the company involved with them you would not be happy.

Felicity McCarthy from Facebook was the next speaker and she talked about Facebook being the place where you are your real self and gave some tips on optimising Facebook for both yourself and your business page.

Some of her tips included :

  • Keep Updates Short
  • Keep Updates Timely and Relevant
  • Make it about your fans/ Engage with them

Those tips might seem simple but they are often ignored and it’s always great to have them re emphasised especially from someone who works for Facebook!

After a brief coffee break we returned to the event and into the case studies. There was an example of B2B from Sage Ireland’s Beatrice Whelan, B2C in the service industry from David Stone of Burritos & Blues and another B2C from Aedan Ryan of Puddleducks.

Beatrice was up first and she told us how Sage Ireland used Social Media in the Integrated Marketing Mix. Sage ran a campaign in late 2012 which involved listening to their customers and running a very unique and well presented competition with the chance of winning their latest software. Sage are an example of a company who know their audience and what they want.

Joan Mulvihill talking at the IIA Deep Dive Series

Up next was Burrito & Blues main man David Stone. I know you’re all wondering did we get free burritos? Sadly not as to quote David ‘’they don’t travel well’’. He was forgiven because of his really interesting presentation. David showed us how he uses Social Media, preferably Twitter, to engage with his audience and develop his company’s image. David told us that it’s just him his iPhone and he doesn’t have any Social Media Expertise per se. David informed us that when it comes to Social Media he doesn’t try to hide from any problems and tries his best to turn a negative into a positive. Really good customer service in my opinion.

The final case study was presented by Aedan Ryan of Puddleducks. Puddleduks sell childrens’ waterproof clothing and are based in Cork. Aedan gave us a brief insight into the history of Puddleducks and the range of clothing that they supply. They were founded in 2005 and have over 200 Products with over 1500 variations.

Aedan showed us their marketing mix and they use Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest to name just a few. They also use Google Adwords and Facebook Ads. He told us that their marketing strategy is – Brand Awareness- Building Trust-Community and Loyalty. He showed us example of all of these aspects in action and they are all really well executed to be fair to them.

The day finished off by having a short Q&A session with the three case study speakers, with Joan being the main contributor as the audience seemed a little quiet (it was a long day to be fair :) ).

I left the IIA with an overall better view of how to engage with existing and potential customers alike on Social Media. It was well worth the trip into town for and I can’t wait to go back again.

Stay Zavvy,

@Sean_Carroll_