Archive for the ‘Marketing’ Category

The 2022 World Cup in Qatar has caused a reputation crisis for FIFA

December 8, 2022

“It’s the most controversial World Cup in recent history and a ball hasn’t even been kicked. Ever since FIFA chose Qatar back in 2010, the smallest nation to host football’s greatest competition has faced some big questions. 

From accusations of corruption in the bidding process to the treatment of migrant workers who’ve built the stadiums where many lost their lives. Homosexuality is illegal here and women’s rights are also in the spotlight. Also the decision to switch the tournament from summer to winter. 

Against that backdrop, there is a tournament to be played here that will be watched and enjoyed around the world. Stick to football, say FIFA, well we will – for a couple of minutes at least.” 

Those were the words of former England footballer turned BBC presenter Gary Lineker as he opened coverage of the world’s most illustrious football tournament. He made it clear to viewers that the World Cup being hosted in Qatar is surrounded by scandal and it is not just Qatar that should be under the spotlight but world football’s governing body FIFA. 

This is not just the view of Gary Lineker but many people in both the football world and outside of that. Roy Keane speaking live from Qatar told ITV viewers that, “It’s been mentioned about the corruption with FIFA, the way they treat migrant workers, gay people…it’s great that it’s been brought up. They shouldn’t have the World Cup here; you can’t treat people like that.” It is such comments from high-profile footballing names like Lineker and Keane that has helped to drive increased media spotlight on Qatar and FIFA. 

You might be asking now, ‘How the hell were they ever even selected to host the tournament?’. The US Department of Justice reportedly claims that bribes were taken by high-ranking officials during the selection of Russia and Qatar as the tournament hosts for both the 2018 and 2022 World Cups. These are accusations that are denied by both Russian and Qatari officials. Of course, the words of these regimes have proven so honourable in the past!

FIFA’s reputation amongst football fans has always been one of caution in recent years. In 2015, FIFA headquarters were raided by the FBI and Swiss authorities in connection with an investigation into corruption by officials within the organisation and other associates connected. This investigation led to the removal of Sepp Blatter as FIFA President and investigations into the bidding process for both the 2018 and 2022 World Cups, as mentioned above. 

When former UEFA official, Gianni Infantino, was elected President of FIFA in February 2016. He was elected to bring in a new dawn of respected and responsible governance to world football. However, his reign as president has failed to do just that. Infantino has instead overseen an organisation that has been dogmented by its past, failing to usher in that new dawn in which all football fans across the world hoped for.

Infantino remained silent when people criticised the holding of the 2018 World Cup in Russia despite Putin’s annexation of Crimea at the time and his regime’s anti-LGBTQ stance. Criticism of the bidding process into the 2018 World Cup and Russia’s holding of the tournament has become increasingly controversial post the event. Most partly due to the rise of what we now know as ‘sportswashing’ and Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine earlier this year.

In fact, these two issues have also contributed to the increased media scrutiny on current World Cup host Qatar this time round. A nation in which Amnesty International says, “Despite government reforms, migrant workers continued to face labour abuses and struggled to change jobs freely. Curtailment of freedom of expression increased in the run-up to FIFA World Cup 2022. Women and LGBTI people continued to face discrimination in law and practice.”

For Infantino, this is not Russia 2018 and he can no longer ignore the questions being asked by fans, players, football associations, and governments across the world. His and FIFA’s response to those questions centred around the issues described by Amnesty International, above, have left him and the organisation facing even further scrutiny and reputational damage.

On the eve of the tournament kicking off, Infantino held a press conference where hit out at the critics of FIFA, Qatar, and the decision to hold the World Cup there. He remarked, “What we Europeans have been doing for the last 3,000 years, we should be apologising for the next 3,000 years before starting to give moral lessons.” This comment was followed up with a series of personal confessions by Infantino in which he strangely said, “Today I feel Qatari. Today I feel Arab. Today I feel African. Today I feel gay. Today I feel disabled. Today I feel a migrant worker.” That was after Infantino told a packed press conference that he knew how it felt to be discriminated against because as a child he was teased for having red hair and freckles. 

This press conference by the FIFA President was met with much backlash, as many felt that he belittled the groups affected by the discriminations of the Qatari regime, especially members of the LBGTQ community and migrant workers. FIFA’s reputation took another hit only days later when it decided that it would book players who dared to wear the ‘OneLove’ armband onto the field of play during the course of the tournament. This came as many European nations had decided that the team captain would do this to show solidarity with the LGBTQ community in Qatar and across the world. 

On the back of this penalty, those countries who proposed to wear the armband decided not to do so. Subsequently, FIFA has remained relatively quiet on this decision but only to reinforce their ruling when asked to comment. It seems the approach of FIFA to negative publicity and public outcry over the 2022 World Cup in Qatar is to remain silent on the issues and when they do speak to defend their actions. Even if they are deemed to be extremely unpopular ones, especially in the West.

FIFA’s shaky reputation has taken a hammering in the last few weeks over the World Cup being held in Qatar. And it is clear that Gianni Infantino has not ushered in a new regime that many football fans would have hoped for when he became FIFA President in 2016. His actions of late are proven evidence of this.

Recently, the much disgraced former FIFA President, Sepp Blatter, admitted that it was a mistake to award Qatar the World Cup. If FIFA wants to start to repair its reputation, then its current president could follow Blatter’s lead by doing the same.

Despite all of this, the football continues and while money and corruption brought (or bought!) the tournament to this inappropriate location there has been some refreshing “purity” to the actual matches, The best players from a country play the best players from another country, and unlike club football where the teams such as Manchester City and PSG can buy success we are refreshingly seeing the opposite, with many surprises and shock exits.

So while football is actually winning, it is a real pity that the teams and the players did not come together, wear their armbands or even refuse to play at all. They are the attraction, the ones who have built the fantastic reputation of the World Cup and despite the best efforts of FIFA it still continues to be the most fantastic, celebration festival of football in the world..

Dylan

Dylan Morley is an Account Executive at Fuzion Communications, full service marketing and PR agency, with offices in Cork and Dublin.

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

December 1, 2022

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

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.

Nothing says IMPACT like an event….

October 11, 2022

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.

The Love Island Effect – Fast Fame & Fast Fashion

September 22, 2022

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

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.

Google wants its AI to take over your marketing

August 3, 2022

For anyone who is running any Google Ad campaigns you will probably have seen the big shift in Google behaviour over the last couple of years.

Basically, they are encouraging you the customer, the marketer to get out of the way and let their AI take over!!

We’ll allocate your budget for you..

We’ll choose the copy for your adverts..

We’ll come review what you are doing, make recommendations for change and then to make life easy, we will even implement them automatically!

All of this is “cloaked” in a “your campaign results will improve

This was the message I received today for one client campaign:

Unlock your account’s full potential
Opt in to automatically apply recommendations to help you reach your goals by applying the right recommendations at the right time.

We’re here to help you reach more of your marketing objectives
Our Google Ads team understands the dedication it takes for businesses like yours to succeed. That’s why you can automatically apply recommendations – which makes sure that you’ll never miss an opportunity to reach potential customers by regularly applying tailored recommendations to your account.

They understand the “dedication” it takes for businesses like yours to succeed – really??!!

and…that’s why you can automatically apply recommendations….I love the logic!!!!

Press “yes” at your peril, because before you know it, you won’t know whether you are coming or going, your adverts will be applied randomly and the only certain thing will be the amount you are spending, and certainly not how you are spending it.

Our advice is

  • understand your objectives
  • understand how each of the Google features work
  • carefully apply these, in full knowledge of what you are doing and why
  • stay in total control of your messages and budgets
  • review your results carefully and adjust campaigns accordingly

Along with your SEO work, Google Ads are a brilliant, powerful way to generate excellent leads for your business, but please please stay in control.

We don’t want to hand even more control to Mr. Google!

If you need us to help you, you know where we are…

Greg

Greg Canty is a partner of Fuzion Communications and he heads up the digital department, providing web optimisation and Google Ads services to clients.

Back to Branding

March 14, 2022

To gain a deeper understanding of branding, consider your emerging identity – your adolescent brand.

You may not have realised it when you were younger, but we all had a brand!

Back then, your brand was developed by pushing your personal boundaries of fashion and music, ethics, morality, and friendships, as well as objectives and ambitions for the future.

Thinking about your youthful brand is important because it allows you to merge the numerous pieces that came together to form your identity – the image you had of yourself, and the image others had of you. It’s a riddle — and it’s crucial.

People create opinions of one another. It’s difficult to avoid it. As a result, people developed opinions about me. To those folks, those perceptions were my brand.

The way I interacted with them, the clothing I wore, the music I listened to, my principles and opinions, as well as what they expected of me, all became part of my brand.

Some people knew me well, while others didn’t, yet my brand was built by first impressions.

Others would create my brand for me, if I didn’t invest in clothes, music, and culture. And in today’s environment, social media, blogs, and online presence are just as much part of defining an adolescent brand.

My adolescent brand was more about face-to-face encounters, behaviours, ethos, attitude, outlook, what I did or didn’t do, and my values. These fundamentals are vital to the development of a brand.

At different times, different people perceived me in different ways.

As a result, for various people, I needed to have a distinct brand perspective. There would have been many similarities, but there would have been some differences as well.

Parents, for example, might have seen me differently from my friends in several respects. For instance, if I talked to my Mum in the same tone of voice as I talked to my friends, there would have been a serious communication breakdown!

It’s exciting to imagine how your brand will touch so many different sorts of individuals. It isn’t about deception or claiming to be someone else to please people or to fit in. That doesn’t go as planned.

No one is able to deceive a huge group of people for very long. When it comes to your brand, it’s all about being yourself.

Growing up is a lot like piecing together your business or organisation’s identity jigsaw, but from a different, more mature perspective, and just as when I was younger, the best way to get to the truth is to ask the most basic questions.

Who are you?

Neill

Neill MacCann is a senior graphic designer with Fuzion Communications who provide a full suite of print and digital graphic design services from offices in Dublin and Cork, Ireland.

Digital Marketing Trends and the things that never change!

March 6, 2022

I sat down with Alma Brosnan (Head of Social Media with Fuzion) recently for an episode of the Win Happy podcast to discuss some of the latest trends with social media and digital marketing and the different things that anyone in business should be looking out for this year.

We had a really great conversation, and whether you are someone operating in a B2B (Business to consumer or community) or a B2B (Business to Business) sector the conversation is well worth a listen.

Click here for the podcast or look for it where you listen to your podcasts or on Spotify.

While things keep on changing and evolving and you always need to be alert to these changes, the one thing that never changes is that vital never ending job you need to do to have a successful business or organisation:

You need to keep on telling your story to your target audiences, wherever they are and whether they are looking or listening it is your job to reach them.

So, absolutely …watch those trends, know and understand where and how to reach your audience today and tomorrow but always:

  • Know your story and what is special about it
  • Know your target audience(s) and how your story resonates with them
  • Make sure that when your audience come looking that you convey that story quickly and accurately
  • Have a plan that proactively tells your story all of the time

And as I say on the Win Happy podcast….Thanks for listening!

Greg Canty 

Greg Canty is a Partner of Fuzion Communications who offer Marketing, PR, Graphic Design and Digital Marketing services from our offices in Dublin and Cork, Ireland

Stout talk and “target audiences”

November 14, 2021

I do love my pint of stout and as someone who has worked for Guinness and for a subsidiary of Heineken, who produce both Murphy’s and Beamish in Cork I think I am in a position to chat about it!

During lockdown I think enjoying a creamy point of stout in a pub with friends was quite possibly the thing that I missed most of all and was most grateful when we were able to return to our favourite local.

Where I live in Ballincollig in Cork I am blessed to have the White Horse Bar, Restaurant and Music Venue just down the road from me and a little further away, and on a tricky narrow road we have a wonderful “old man” pub called the Inniscarra Bar.

To stay Covid extra safe Kay, the very lovely proprietor of the Inniscarra Bar tried her very best to keep serving outdoors as long as possible complete with a little canopy and an outside fire, and even outdoors the regulars quickly had their regular seats, just as they would have had inside.

On one particular Thursday night I slipped down there with my fantastic neighbour, Brian for a couple of pints and we sat on a bench outside,

I asked for my pint of choice ‘Murphys’ to be advised against it by Kay who warned that it wasn’t pouring too well and I would be better off with either a Guinness or a Beamish. Two of the regulars overheard our conversation and remarked that the demise of Murphy’s was a sad state of affairs as it was always known as a “Murphy’s House”.

For me, it’s crazy that this could happen in any pub in Cork, but I wasn’t surprised as I hadn’t noticed any activity around this brand in quite a while.

A few days later while doing my grocery shopping in Dunnes Stores I noticed Murphy’s Stout cans on the shelf with new horrible (at least to me) purple and pink branding.

What in the name of god are they doing with that fantastic brand” I thought to myself and I wondered what the logic was behind this garish change.

That weekend I was chatting with my soon to be son in law, Mark and the conversation turned towards the new Murphy’s can. It turns out it wasn’t just me felt this way and this young man also hated the new branding – the beauty of the old brand is that it carried weight and some class and was confident, self assured and rooted in tradition, but this?!

Our first world problems!

A few days later while in town getting my hair chopped I happened to bump into an old buddy of mine who works for Heineken in Cork. I hadn’t seen him for an age so we had a great chat and before he left I had the opportunity of asking him what the hell was going on with Murphy’s!

I told him about the Inniscarra Bar experience and gave him my feedback about the new branding on the cans and after a while he turned around to me and said..

Ah….you are not our target audience!

That put me right in my place and we finished up our conversation and on my way home I reflected on what he had said to me and the sad fact that I was now 56 and thought yes, I was probably no longer the target audience, possibly no one’s target audience!

I thought some more and it started to bother me.

While you might make changes to your brand to appeal to a “new” audience, maybe you should first consider the fools who actually do ask for it and figure out what they like about it, as there might just be some valuable nuggets worth holding onto and the build from these.

Target audience my arse…!

Greg

Greg Canty is a Partner of Fuzion Communications who offer Marketing, PR, Graphic Design Podcast Production and Digital Marketing services from our offices in Dublin and Cork, Ireland


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