A FORMER INTERCOUNTY GAA star and a cult t-shirt promoter have figured out something of value to small and medium businesses – how to harness the potential of online to grow their enterprise.
These smart entrepreneurs – Dermot Macardle, MD of Gaelic Performance, and Ian Bolton, MD of Teebusters.com – will be two of seven SME owners revealing the digital tools that brought them success in an upcoming conference in Dublin.
DMX Dublin, Ireland’s largest digital marketing event, is running at the Aviva stadium on 12 March next (click here for more info). Macardle and Bolton will be speaking as part of the new SME stream at the conference, dedicated to bringing inspiration and ideas to Irish small and medium-sized businesses around online challenges and opportunities.
Here are just some of the people attendees will hear from:
- Fabio Molle, co-founder of Funky Christmas Jumpers, a massive online store for Christmas jumpers which was born out of a failed attempt by Molle to find one to wear for a Christmas party five years ago. They managed to get Ryan Tubridy to wear their jumpers on the Late Late Toy Show and have a large global reach through their online shop.
- Liam Lennon, founder of Juicers.ie, a juicer and health-related products online shop. Liam says that he used his experience in creating e-commerce sites for companies like Aer Arann to build his own – the web-only business quadrupled in size in the last three years, selling products across Europe. Liam says that he focused on digital channels to deliver a great online experience – “we have learnt how to grow internationally without the huge cost normally associated with exporting”.
- Ian Bolton, MD of Teebusters.com, provides a platform for designers online and works on a time-limited basis. “Our business has grown exponentially since we applied digital marketing techniquies to out new limited edition retail division,” he says. “It has enabled the business to move from an Ireland-only market to one where we deliver globally every day of the week.”
- Dermot Macardle, MD of Gaelic Performance, which markets a range of Gaelic football-related products, put his experience as captain of the Monaghan senior football team to good use off the pitch. Dermot says that he found that and his “passion for all things digital” meant that he could target a niche online that tapped into new markets.
The content programmer of DMX Dublin, Colin Lewis, said that it is vital that the successes of SMEs be heard among the backdrop of success of larger brands – and in fact, that some exciting innovation is happening in that sector. He said:
Lots of small Irish firms are using digital tools to accelerate growth and expand internationally. Using cost-efficient and ubiquitous tools such as social media has enabled these firms to market internationally at scale – and fast.
Organised by the Marketing Institute of Ireland, DMX Dublin has speakers and workshops from across a broad range of companies, large and smaller. The list of speakers is being added to week-by-week here and runs from 8am to 5.30pm on 12 March.