The Late Late Toy Show – Love it or Hate it?

December 1, 2022 by

Since it first hit our television screens in 1975, the Late Late Toy Show has become an Irish Christmas tradition.

The live two and a half hour programme hosted by RTÉ personality Ryan Tubridy, sees children from across the country play and talk about the toys that they currently love. For families, the Late Late Toy Show has always signified the official start of the Christmas season, with many rushing to have the tree up for the night.

This year more than 1.6 million viewers tuned in across the weekend to watch Tubridy’s portrayal of The Wizard of Oz’s Scarecrow, as well as Saoibh Lonergan, Lucy Hoban, Caillín Joe McDonald, Cuckoo’s Nest, Emmie O’Neill and Billy Brady and more make their Toy Show debut.

As it’s the most watched programme of the year, people tend to have strong opinions of the children’s show.

Starting with the man of the hour, love him or hate him, 2022 is Tubridy’s 14th successive year hosting the toy show. Over the past number of years, the toy show has seemed to reel away from live demonstrations of the toys, with the children almost accessories of the programme and Ryan being central to it. Not once this year was there a mention of how much the toys cost, where they could be purchased and who they would be perfect for – kind of taking away from the point of the programme.

There’s no question about the loyalty of the viewers with the Irish public raising over four million euro over the course of the weekend for the Toy Show charity appeal. Following its creation in 2020, the Toy Show appeal year on year raises huge sums of money for children’s charities around Ireland.

While the programme itself is undoubtedly entertaining, the live Twitter feed can’t be beaten. This year, even brands jumped on board with Ryanair and Aer Lingus competing for the likes as Aron Gibbons from Westport, Mayo gave a live flight demonstration on air. As you can see both brands took a very different approach, with Ryanair causing a few more laughs.

So, do you love it or hate it?

In a way this is an irrelevant question because however you feel about the show it attracts a huge audience and people love talking about it. I think the most important aspect of it from a marketing point of view is the consistency, and this consistency leads to nostalgia and it suddenly becomes something we all end up marking our calendar by.

Getting anyone to change their habits is a difficult thing to achieve, but once you do that it can result in a customer for life.

Creating a special event that you can recreate year after year (month after month, week after week or even day after day) to allow people to form a habit with you and your business mightn’t be the worst idea ever!

1975, RTE – “How about we do a Toy Show instead of our normal chat show?

I wonder who said yes, let’s do it!

Every nostalgic thing we do, had to have a first time...

Heather

Heather Lordan is Account Executive at Fuzion Communications, full service marketing and PR agency, with offices in Cork and Dublin.

Is Twitter a must (musk!) for your business?

November 15, 2022 by

We are part of an international network of independent PR agencies that handle Crisis PR communications for clients across Europe, called the CCNE, or the Crisis Communications Network Europe.

This week a query came from one of the European clients of the group about Twitter, about the relevance of the platform and if we felt with all of the Elon Musk shenanigans that clients should consider moving away from it and onto something else.

While it was my favourite social media platform for such a long time it does break my heart a little (or a lot) to see how toxic it has become, but at the same time a very interesting question had been asked.

The client query had some very specific questions, which I will get to in a moment, but I did feel there were some broader questions that should be asked first, which we should all think about in business:

Is your target audience(s) using the platform?

If you go fishing you go where the fish are, after all!

If you believe that your audience is using the platform then that should be a big yes, but also consider how they are using it, why and when.

What about the relevant media?

What we find is that the media are normally very proactive on social media. It is a lively platform and one of the main reasons why journalists are active on Twitter is because of the powerful search function.

If there is a breaking story they can very quickly see what is being said and by who.

Everyone in business should identify the relevant journalists and publications/media outlets for their industry, follow them, understand them, observe their posts and hopefully connect and get to know them.

How many followers do you have?

It is so difficult to build up a following on any platform these days without significant advertising budget. If you do have a good following then clearly people using the platform find that you are relevant to them and it would be foolish not to take advantage of this.

Have you developed a strategy for Twitter as part of your overall social media strategy?

Each of the social media platforms can do quite a different job for you, so it is important to understand your overall objectives, the nature of your target audiences and then be clear about the role of Twitter as part of this.

For example, if you have a business or organisation that is mainly consumer facing then Facebook and Instagram would be your priority social media platforms. However, you may decide that Twitter could be very useful for interacting with industry stakeholders and media.

Could Twitter be part of the way you deliver Customer Service?

This week we were providing Twitter training to a government agency that deals with the general public. I was very surprised to learn about how many queries they would receive from the general public via their Twitter account.

They said that people were very surprised to get responses to queries so quickly – what a great way to improve the public image of your business/organisation!

Are you using Twitter for Posting, Interacting, Search and Competitor Tracking purposes?

While a business may use Twitter predominantly to push out messages there could be a huge role for:

  • Interacting with customers/clients
  • Jumping into conversations when the subject matter is relevant
  • Using the powerful search function to track industry topics and relevant trends
  • Tracking competitor activity

Could you interact strategically with Partners, Customers, Prospects and Stakeholders?

By carefully following other Twitter users in the above categories you can interact with their posts, mention them in yours and use the platform to strategically build the right relationships.

Is there a cause you are championing?

There are times when you need to put a spotlight on an issue, get people’s attention and yes, call out organisations or individuals when it is needed.

Whether you are lobbying about an issue or using the platform to get the right attention, Twitter can be an incredibly powerful tool.

Being honest, there are times when it can be the only way to really get the right attention for an issue!

So while considering the relevance of Twitter with the backdrop of Elon Musk and all of the potential changes the above questions should be answered first.

If there is a case for using Twitter because of that, then go for it and we will see in time how it evolves.

As I mentioned there were some specific questions and how I responded to them:

How is Elon Musk’s takeover of Twitter received in your respective countries?

In Ireland we are very unhappy mainly because of his treatment of employees and we are also very wary of him allowing crazy, nasty content (even more than now!!) back on the increasingly toxic platform.

Have you already had similar requests?

I would say people have been pulling away from Twitter because of the increasing toxic content on there generally as well as a general nervousness about posting anything on there.

Any recommendations that you are making to clients?

We are not making strong recommendations, but we are talking about its diminished influence and pushing people back to LinkedIn for B2B scenarios and Facebook/Instagram for B2C.

However, it does quite a different job that the others cannot do.

Are you in fundamental exchange with customers about alternative platforms (eg. Mastodon) and do you already have insights?

There is some very quiet talk about Mastodon but this is really just with avid social media users and we are not seeing the relevance of it.

We have opened accounts on it just to see how it works and will keep an eye on it as it develops.

So, to summarise I would say even though it is far from the enjoyable and supportive platform that it once was, it still has many uses and these can be very powerful.

As for the toxicity, I would advise staying away from this as much as possible. The trolls are there in abundance and be careful not to get drawn in by them.

From a business point of view it is so important that you operate any of your social media accounts professionally, From a personal point of view, try to be positive, upbeat and nice!

As I write that last statement I need to look at my own use of Twitter and yes, it does get very nasty and yes I do join in – shame on you Greg!!

Happy tweeting folks and lets hope Elon learns quickly, that if he wants to protect his investment and keep users and advertisers, he needs to keep it clean.

Greg

Greg is a partner at Fuzion Communications, a full service Marketing and PR agency with offices in Dublin and Cork, Ireland that offers social media training and consultancy to clients.

Rishi Sunak: The Making of a Prime Minister

October 28, 2022 by

Rishi Sunak’s road to the 10 Downing Street may have taken him longer than he would have liked but it is no accident. Over recent years, Sunak has been preparing and positioning himself for the time in which he would become the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

In the 2015 General Election, he was first elected to parliament as MP for the constituency of Richmond in North Yorkshire. His first big policy decision or dilemma in politics came early-on through the Brexit referendum. Sunak chose to campaign for the successful Vote Leave campaign. However, he is publicly portrayed as a somewhat sensible Brexiteer. Understanding that compromise must be and should be sought with the European Union on issues such as the Northern Ireland Protocall

Over the next couple of years after the referendum, Sunak would remain a relatively unknown character on the periphery of British politics. That would change in late 2019, when Sunak represented the Conservative Party on both the BBC and ITV’s leaders debate for the 2019 General Election. These high-profile appearances by Sunak highlight that he has been pinpointed by party colleagues for his communication and debating skills long before holding a cabinet position. Shortly after that successful election for the Tories, the resignation of Sajid Javid as Chancellor of the Exchequer in February 2022 would open the door for his department underling, Sunak, to be promoted to the man who controls the UK’s pursestrings. 

Over the next two years, Sunak would be faced with the challenge of keeping the UK’s economy stable and alive during the COVID-19 Pandemic. During this time, Sunak’s party leader and Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, would be embroiled in scandal due to his attendance at parties in Downing Street while the UK was in lockdown. Johnson’s failure to quash what is known as Partygate left much to be desired for his Chancellor Sunak, who’s resignation from government in July 2022 would be the catalyst for many to follow and see Johnson ousted from his premiership. 

A Tory leadership contest ensued, with Sunak named as a frontrunner and a favourite amongst the bookies from the start. This contest would ultimately end in defeat for Sunak after getting to the final two candidates where party membership decided to opt for Liz Truss instead (that worked out well!). 

Rishi Sunak’s campaign to be Tory leader during the summer was unsuccessful as he could not win over a majority of the party membership, who favoured Truss and her policies of lower taxes and free-market economics. Sunak is also no stranger to typical conservative ideals on the issues of taxation and the free-market economy. However, he warned that Truss’ plan was too bold given the current economic climate of high inflation. He would be proven right.

Sunak’s campaign to be leader originally ended in defeat because he relied too heavily on convincing Tory MPs of his credentials rather than the party membership. This failure to win over the regular Tory voting membership can be seen as a failure to communicate effectively with his party’s own base, which will be sure to play on the minds of Sunak and his political advisors in time to come. His campaign slogan was ‘Ready for Rishi’. It was only last month, Tory MPs and members were not. 

Unfortunately for Sunak, his campaign to be leader this summer was also marred by his relationship with wealth. Sunak and his wife, Akshata Murty, are believed to have an estimated net worth of £730 million. The problem with Sunak’s wealth was that it made people and the media question whether he could truly relate to people on low incomes that are suffering through the current cost of living crisis. While Sunak repeatedly tried to bat away those claims, it remained a hot topic throughout the leadership contest with Truss. 

This was not helped by the surfacing of a video, while on the campaign trail, of him speaking at a plush Tory garden party where he remarked about “undoing” measures that provided funding to “deprived urban areas” as Chancellor. This video was also used as an attack point by Labour Leader Keir Starmer, during Sunak’s first Prime Minister’s Questions (PMQs). This shows that the opposition plan to use this video as a way of convincing the British public that Sunak does not care for those in low socio-economic urban areas. 

So, why are Tories now willing to accept Rishi Sunak, when only in early September they elected Liz Truss as leader and Prime Minister over him.?

The answer is simple -Truss lost their trust.

Her bold approach to instigate growth in the economy in her mini budget, alongside her then Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng, saw the financial markets lose trust in the UK economy. This led to soaring interest rates for borrowing and the value of the British pound slump as a result. Over the next six weeks, Truss’ government would be in turmoil and it would see her sack her own newly appointed Chancellor and her Home Secretary resign due to a security breach. 

Truss lost support amongst her cabinet, Tory backbenchers, and the general public. When she signalled her intention to resign as Prime Minister only six weeks after taking office. The overwhelming majority of Tory MPs saw only one person capable of steadying the ship. On to the stage enters Rishi Sunak.

The man who has quickly built himself a formidable political career and reputation through marketing himself as a serious politician and now leader, holds the highest office you can in British politics. Even a late run from Boris Johnson could not deter Sunak this time.

So six weeks on, it seems the Tories are now finally ‘Ready for Rishi’!

Dylan

Dylan Morley is part of the Fuzion PR team who operate from offices in Dublin and Cork, Ireland

21 Questions with… Deirdre Waldron

October 21, 2022 by

Welcome to the 13th (lucky for some!) of our Fuzion Friday series, where we put 21 devilishly difficult questions to a team member, giving you an insight that Freud would be proud of.

Next up is a fan of Tuscany and Sex and the City… it’s Deirdre!

Fuzion Communications Picture: Miki Barlok
  1. Tell us something about you that nobody else in the team might know?

My first job, apart from working for my family’s business, was selling seagrass to pubs – I lasted half a day. On my worst day now, I tell myself ‘I could be selling seagrass!!!’

  1. What film have you watched more than five times?

Sex & the City – and yes, both of them – sorry, not sorry!!!

  1. What work are you most proud of in the past year?

Bringing the number of our team up to 20 this year.

  1. Dream job?

What I’m doing now, but working from West Cork.

  1. Favourite brand?

Everyone who knows me knows the answer to this – James Whelan Butchers. I love the way they take a product that is considered by many a commodity, and really celebrate it and make it so special – this shines through in everything they do and also those who know me will know I’m not just saying this cos the CEO is a client and a good friend.

  1. Favourite Holiday Destination?

Tuscany.

  1. Best lesson from your career

It’s not about the best idea or the biggest budget, it’s about having the tenacity to follow things through.

  1. Eurovision or World Cup?

World Cup.

  1. Who is the joker on the team?

Ciarán – Master Copywriter, which makes him first for the wittiest comment or observation.

  1. Recommend a podcast?

Suppose I can’t recommend Greg’s #WinHappy Podcast? If not, just listened to Coupledom with Idris & Sabrina Elba – some of the episodes are really light; in one of the episodes they had a great chat with Ben & Jerry about their partnership and how throughout growing the business they remained through to their values – even now that they are no longer part of the business, their values have remained the same. I’d wish for the same for Fuzion.

  1. Reality shows – Love or Hate?

Indifferent mainly – although I sneak the odd episode of The Kardashians when Greg isn’t looking!!!!

  1. Dinner party with 3 people – dead or alive – who do you invite?

My brother Liam (I miss him), the iconic and original “Mad Woman” Jane Maas (I miss her), and Billy Joel to entertain us.

  1. If you could be anywhere in the world – where would you be & what would you do?

Walking on a beach in West Cork with Greg and the dogs and as it’s a fantasy, the dogs would be so well behaved I could let them off the lead and run wild – oh and Greg too lol!

  1. Who is your role model?

I have three, my mum, who was a tenacious business woman years before her time, Jane Mass, one of the first female copywriters/ad executives on Madison Avenue in the 1950s,  and the founder of the Rose of Tralee, Margaret Dwyer.

  1. What was your first job?

Working in my parent’s restaurant “The Central Grill” in Tralee. Washing dishes and serving tables, when I was tall enough.

  1. Death Row meal?

Dry Aged Burger with Truffle Fries…….lots of truffles……

  1. Favourite book?

At the moment “Wounds” by Fergal Keane as he gives a shout out to my rebel of a grandfather Willie McCabe and the part he played in the War of Independence.

  1. Your a grammar nazi oar not?

More a spelling nazi than grammar nazi. It’s a definite ‘no’ from me if someone applies for a job with Fuzion and they can’t get the name of the organisation right!!!

  1. First album you bought or downloaded?

Does it count if Santa bought it to me? If yes, then it was ‘Arrival’ by Abba, in 1976 when I was 10 – must have still believed in him….

  1. Work from home – or office?

Office …….. what’s that?

  1. Most memorable ad slogans – why?

“I 💗 New York” – this was pivotal in getting people to look differently at the city – it worked back in the 1970s and is still relevant and used globally in so many ways.

Deirdre Waldron is a Partner at Fuzion Communications, full service marketing and PR agency, with offices in Cork and Dublin.

21 Questions with…Heather Lordan

October 14, 2022 by

Welcome to the twelfth of our Fuzion Friday series, where we put 21 devilishly difficult questions to a team member, giving you an insight that Freud would be proud of.

Next up a fan of tattoos and Will Ferrell…..Heather!

Fuzion Communications Picture: Miki Barlok
  1. Tell us something about you that nobody else in the team might know.

I have four tattoos and am planning loads more!

  1. What film have you watched more than five times?

The Other Guys.

  1. What work are you most proud of in the past year?

Helping with Tour de Munster 2021. It was a hugely successful year for the annual charity cycle and it raised over €522k for the Munster branches of Down syndrome Ireland

  1. Dream job?

Own my own gastropub 

  1. Favourite brand? – Why?

Asos – I could scroll for hours!

  1. Favourite Holiday Destination?

I’m not fussy – once there’s sun and an Irish bar!

  1. Best lesson from your career?

There is literally something new to learn everyday

  1. Eurovision or World Cup?

World Cup

  1. Who is the joker on the team?

Michelle.

  1. Recommend a podcast.

I wouldn’t be a massive podcast listener but if I’m out on a walk I always throw on the two Johnnies for a laugh.

  1. Reality shows – Love or Hate?

Hate

  1. Dinner party with 3 people – dead or alive – who do you invite?

Will Ferrell, Paul Rudd and my boyfriend Tomás because I wouldn’t want him to miss out on that!

  1. If you could be anywhere in the world – where would you be & what would you do?

I love Ireland and don’t think I ever want to leave.

  1. Who is your role model?

No real role model but I love listening to positive mindset and manifestation talks.

  1. What was your first job?

Pool attendant in Inchydoney Hotel, Clonakilty.

  1. Death Row meal?

A spicy chicken pasta with garlic bread.

  1. Favourite book?

Feel the fear and do it anyway.

  1. Your a grammar nazi oar not?

I always try and make sure my grammar is right but I wouldn’t be too worried about correcting anyone.

  1. First album you bought or downloaded?

Definitely one of those “Now that’s what I call music” albums.

  1. Work from home – or office?

Home – I couldn’t bare be away from my little shih-tzu. I do love our Fuzion Fridays though, and meeting up with the team.

  1. Most memorable ad slogans – why?

Not a slogan but I remember the day when someone pointed out that the Amazon logo had an arrow from A-Z to represent what they stock, and I was amazed!!

Heather Lordan is Account Executive at Fuzion Communications, full service marketing and PR agency, with offices in Cork and Dublin.

Nothing says IMPACT like an event….

October 11, 2022 by

After a two-year hiatus on in-person events, it has been a busy few months at Fuzion, planning, organising, and executing a number of events for our clients.

From new pet-store openings to live cookery demos, art exhibitions and high-profile national container terminal launches – it has been a whirlwind……..and we love it!

There is nothing like an event to create a high level of impact – through both the media coverage gained, and the all-important lasting impression with clients and stakeholders. Even the simple act of inviting people to your event is an excellent way of getting their attention and making them aware of the initiative.

Events form a valuable part of a communications strategy, connecting clients with their customers, stakeholders, staff, and the local community….it’s all about taking a moment to thank those who are close to you, reinforce those connections, and celebrate the milestone your company has achieved.

The recent launch of the Port of Cork, Cork Container Terminal in Ringaskiddy was an excellent example of creating impact. Not only did we reach almost every news outlet that day – from national TV and radio news bulletins, to print, online and trade publications, but for the 200 guests in attendance, (some of which chartered flights from overseas to attend) the atmosphere created on the day is something they won’t soon forget.

It’s safe to say at Fuzion, we put on a great show!

(Disclaimer: Working in partnership with an amazing, proactive client is also a great help!)

So how do we do it? Here are my top 10 tips to create a memorable event:

  1. Planning – planning in advance is key. Brainstorm, research and map out your event format and a guideline budget. Keep track of your activities, budget, suppliers, checklists and media targets in one, easy-to-follow spreadsheet that all of the team have access to and keep it updated regularly. A well-thought-out running order will be your bible!
  1. Personalise – wherever possible BRAND IT! Creativity goes a long way – from your event invite (we use Greenvelope.com – an e-invite that works a treat), to your catering, decorations, and staging – a running theme helps create a cohesive look and feel. Guests will appreciate the attention to detail.
  1. Guestlist – inviting high-profile guests, relevant to your event, will help attract media attention and adds a layer of esteem to your event.
  1. Create unique experiences – Add a dash of something EXTRA and involve your guests in an interactive experience to add the wow factor. A boat trip, guided tour, a live demonstration or performance….or a trip up a 50 metre high crane – the possibilities are endless!
  1. Make it ‘instagrammable’ – A quirky photo backdrop, mural, balloon art and other branded elements all help to encourage guests to share photos from your event on the day. Set a memorable hashtag for your event and get trending! Video footage, or better yet, drone footage will bring your insta-game up a notch.
  1. Divide & Conquer – behind every good event is a team of people running behind the scenes. Share out as many of the tasks and responsibilities as possible and have regular check-in meetings with your team to make sure everything is on track and everyone knows their role on the day.
  1. Suppliers – work with trusted suppliers, ideally those you have worked with before to ensure the smooth running of your event. Draft briefs for each supplier detailing your agreed setup and timings. A good working relationship with your press photographer is key – to capture ‘the money shot’
  1. Embargo or Exclusive? Select your key target press and contact them with the relevant information well in advance (at least 3-4 weeks if possible). This will allow them time to plan their story, arrange interviews and schedule time to attend the event in their calendar. Draft your press release early, have it approved and share it with select trusted media contacts under embargo. Sweeten the deal with a first exclusive to one of your high-profile national targets – though caution is advised here – choose carefully!
  1. Get stuck in – often with events, not everything is going to go exactly to plan, so allow for flexibility and get stuck in wherever needed. Comfortable shoes on the day are a must…..and breathe!

10. Got to have Swag offering a small gift or goodie bag to guests on departure is a nice touch that will ensure they are taking home something to remember you by…..

We also co-ordinate the speeches, ensuring that content isn’t duplicated (not always easy!) and for the team members who are in the spotlight with the media, we make sure they are well trained and prepared, to ensure that they do manage to communicate the important messages about the respective initiative – there is so much involved!

Of course, this list could go on for days, and there is no one-size-fits-all approach…..but executed correctly with the right event partners, who are as organised as they are creative, you are sure to create a memorable event and that all-important IMPACT.

Suzanne

Suzanne is a Senior Account Manager with Fuzion Communications, a key part of our PR and Event Management team. We operate from offices in Dublin and Cork, Ireland.

21 Questions with…Olivia Trought

October 7, 2022 by

welcome to the eleventh of our Fuzion Friday series, where we put 21 devilishly difficult questions to a team member, giving you an insight that Freud would be proud of.

Next up is professional Norrie… Olivia!

Fuzion Communications Picture: Miki Barlok

  1. Tell us something about you that nobody else in the team might know. 

I actually don’t think there is anything they don’t know – I like to talk 🙂

  1. What film have you watched more than five times? 

Pretty Woman

  1. What work are you most proud of in the past year? 

The TUS event – the team pulled off an amazing event in a short space of time!

  1. Dream job? 

Wine taster in a vineyard in France – like what could be any better?

  1. Favourite brand? – Why? 

Toyota – my first car purchase from my first paycheck from my first full time job!

  1. Favourite Holiday Destination? 

Jamaica – loved it

  1. Best lesson from your career? 

Own up when you make a mistake

  1. Eurovision or World Cup? 

World Cup – 100%

  1. Who is the joker on the team? 

A toss between Ciarán and Dylan – but maybe Dylan as he is a norrie!

  1. Recommend a podcast. 

The 2 Norries

  1. Reality shows – Love or Hate? 

Love!

  1. Dinner party with 3 people – dead or alive – who do you invite? 

Roy Keane, My Granda John (RIP) and my Dad – what a conversation that would be!

  1. If you could be anywhere in the world – where would you be & what would you do?

Somewhere hot and bringing people out on daily boat tours! Stress free!

  1. Who is your role model? 

Love Michelle Obama

  1. What was your first job? 

Aged 12, Cons shop – Gurranabraher

  1. Death Row meal?

My mums roast chicken and mashed potato

  1. Favourite book? 

Marian Keyes – Rachel’s Holiday (light reading but loved it)

  1. Your a grammar nazi oar not? 

1000000%

  1. First album you bought or downloaded? 

Bought – Michael Jackson’s Bad, Downloaded – Christina Aguilera’s Stripped.

  1. Work from home – or office? 

Bit of both

  1. Most memorable ad slogans – why? 

“McDonalds – I’m lovin it” – both the slogan and the logo are so well known all around the world.

Olivia Trought is Office Manager at Fuzion Communications, full service marketing and PR agency, with offices in Cork and Dublin.

21 Questions with… Ciarán Ó Raghallaigh

September 30, 2022 by

welcome to the tenth of our Fuzion Friday series, where we put 21 devilishly difficult questions to a team member, giving you an insight that Freud would be proud of.

Next up is Tokyo and Jesus fan…..Ciarán!

  1. Tell us something about you that nobody else in the team might know.

Once danced in front of Heidi Klum & Anne Hathaway on a movie. Was on Blackboard Jungle.

  1. What film have you watched more than five times?

Intouchables. Die Hard. Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory (original). Beetlejuice.

  1. What work are you most proud of in the past year?

Just helping everyone in the team to be the best human they can.

  1. Dream job?

Donald Trump speechwriter.

  1. Favourite brand? – Why?

Apple. Just pristine in everything they do. (Apart from ports & cables)

  1. Favourite Holiday Destination?

Japan. Everyone should go once before they die a slow, miserable death.

  1. Best lesson from your career?

Never be afraid to ask what might seem like a stupid question.

  1. Eurovision or World Cup?

Scratch my last answer, sometimes you should be afraid to ask a stupid question!

  1. Who is the joker on the team?

Like, Michelle.

  1. Recommend a podcast.

Bill Burr. Revisionist History (first season). Winds of Change.

  1. Reality shows – Love or Hate?

Hate. Pity. Despair.

  1. Dinner party with 3 people – dead or alive – who do you invite?

The famous Jesus Christ and his two parents (we think), Mary and Joseph. They’d have *some* great chats.

“Dad, why are the lads in class saying mam’s a virgin?”

“Oh Jesus, I mean, son…ah…sure lookit. More wine, Mary?”

  1. If you could be anywhere in the world – where would you be & what would you do?

Japan. Riding Bullet trains all day long, and eating mad-flavoured Kit Kats with folks dressed like Super Mario characters.

  1. Who is your role model?

Nanda – my grandfather, was my idol. Gave me a love of cycling and I’m not sure I’ve ever been happier than when he was on the side of the road at a race I won.

  1. What was your first job?

Roches Stores. Not sure what I was meant to be doing.

  1. Death Row meal?

Eddie Rocket’s burger with garlic cheese & cyanide chips.

  1. Favourite book?

Impossible to choose. But I wish I could read The Long Walk (Stephen King) and Going Solo (Roald Dahl) again – for the first time.

  1. Your a grammar nazi oar not?

Ja!

  1. First album you bought or downloaded?

Introducing the Hardline According to Terence Trent D’Arby.

  1. Work from home – or office?

If ‘home’ was in Dubai or Tokyo, then home – but miss the camaraderie of an office.

  1. Most memorable ad slogans – why?

“‘Snap! Crackle! Pop!’” Almost 90 years old, but still amazingly sharp.

Ciarán Ó Raghallaigh is a Senior Account Manager at Fuzion Communications, full service marketing and PR agency, with offices in Cork and Dublin.

The Love Island Effect – Fast Fame & Fast Fashion

September 22, 2022 by

It’s been one month since we last ran to the couch at 9pm to hear, for the last time this summer, “Previously… on Love Island”. 

For eight weeks of summer, Love Island almost has a chokehold over the nation. Those out for a Sunday drink calling it a night at 8.30pm, those holidaying abroad praying that their wifi is strong enough for Virgin Media player.

An average of 204,000 viewers tuned in across Ireland each night to see how the contestants were getting on, and who they were getting with. For those eight weeks, the reality TV show basically took over our social lives and had us hooked to our screens.

Each season, while romances, friendships and tensions build inside the villa, we watch the contestants’ social media followings build on the outside, particularly on Instagram. The rise to fame is fast, as fast fashion brands scramble to secure their newest brand ambassadors, fighting for the ‘best’ with their top competitors. 

Take Molly-Mae Hague – the most successful contestant ever on the show. Molly-Mae was slowly breaking her way into the world of influencer marketing before ever appearing on or being associated with Love Island, regularly posting on Instagram and sharing to her YouTube channel. She entered the Spanish villa with approximately 170,000 followers. Coming not in first, but in second place on series 5 of the show, there were countless fast fashion brands lining up left, right and centre to sign her up.

She was the first UK influencer that Starbucks had ever paid to post content for them. She exited the villa, to sign a deal with fast-fashion retailer, PrettyLittleThing (PLT), as a brand ambassador. Fast forward three years, she is now their Creative Director – she now has a whopping 6.4 Million Instagram followers, making her the most successful Love Island contestant to date. 

Fast forward to this year. Gemma Owen, daughter of famous English football player, Michael Owen – remember that goal in the 1998 World Cup? Well, Gemma has now almost surpassed her fathers fame, at least with this generation. Gemma entered the villa with 79.5k followers and has now hit the 2 Million mark. Following in the footsteps of Molly-Mae, she has just last week signed an ambassador deal with PrettyLittleThing. 

Ekin-Su, the queen of this summer’s Love Island who did a 180 on the show and won the nations hearts, has quickly jumped to a whopping 3 Million followers, proving she is most deserving of that title. She has signed (supposedly) the biggest deal in Love Island history, with fast-fashion brand, Oh Polly, worth £1 Million. 

It has to be questioned whether Love Island has become the gate-way to fashion deals, as opposed to a path to ‘finding love’? 

Molly-Mae has previously admitted on her YouTube channel that she went on Love Island as a career move and did not think she’d find love, only to meet Tommy (queue the “awwww”). But was this a one-off?

Can Ekin-Su and Gemma maintain their Love Island romances? Deep down, do they really care once they have their brand deals? It is early days for them but time will tell – if love fails, they have fame and fast-fashion…

And as for brands, they all love a good influencer!

Mary

Mary O’Mahony is an Account Manager with Fuzion Communications, a full service PR, Marketing and Graphic Design agency operating from offices in Dublin and Cork.

Influencer Marketing, a clever campaign tactic

September 21, 2022 by

Love them or hate them, influencers prove time and time again that they can be of huge benefit to businesses of all types. From global brands, national titles, charities, community organisations and local small businesses.

Influencer marketing is a tactic that we use frequently at Fuzion. The results we get for clients are very strong, and can range from improving brand awareness, reaching very specific audiences, driving traffic to a website and increasing sales.

This relatively new form of marketing can be an extremely cost effective way to reach target audiences. For example, we support a lot of our clients with product drops to a targeted list of influencers whose content and following are in line with the brand in question. The cost incurred to the business is the design and content of the packs and courier charges, while the return on investment is significantly high with influencers typically showing their audience(followers) the gift they have received and tagging the brands account in their posts.

A recent example of a successful product drop for Fuzion was our work with Hi-Spirits brand, Southern Comfort and their festival themed pack, which was packed full of all the essentials for any festival and included a sampling of their new ready to drink flavoured cans, a branded mini speaker and portable charger and this came packaged in a very handy, attractive cooler bag. We are sure that there was lots of envy at Electric Picnic this year against those lucky few who had these goodies!

This campaign was hugely effective in raising awareness about Southern Comfort’s new product to its target audience, while at the same time creating excitement about the brand.

It is important to note that engaging with the right influencers is just one of the tactics that we would use as part of a marketing and PR campaign for clients, carefully combined and coordinated with other tactics, all designed to work together to reach their target audiences, and as we say at Fuzion, to #WinHappy!

Heather

Heather Lordan is part of the marketing and PR team of Fuzion Communications who work from offices in Dublin and Cork.


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