Hardware Association of Ireland & Digital Bootcamp

To learn more about the innovative Hardware Association of Ireland & Digital Bootcamp go to


Delicious Digital Marketing for Food Businesses.

The Digital Marketing Programme was created specially for food businesses, micro-breweries, boutiques distilleries and coffee roasteries. We want to help you not just learn, but implement successful strategies in food & drink marketing with a strong digital flavour.

This is the perfect new platform for food marketers at established brands, SMEs and food startups to get help and advice on how to build their brand, raise awareness and drive sales.

The Monthly Workshops are run in The Digital Hub in Dublin and during the programme we are available as you create your Masterplan. Monthly Menu includes a digital audit, a digital strategy, a digital studio, social media plans, digital campaigns, digital advertising and digital sales.
At most workshops we will have a special guest speaker who will share their digital learnings and successes. We will also deliver 1-2 sessions as live & recorded webinars during summer holidays.

If you want to register for the Digital Food Marketing Programme, or just want to more information, please don’t hesitate to contact us:

Phone: +353 1 906 0006
Twitter: @socialmedia_ie

Match Metrics To Your Strategy – A Focus On Facebook

We have looked at the main success factors in great digital marketing last week, so today we’re going to laser in on one of the social media giants: Facebook.

Besides your own website, Facebook is arguably your online shopfront.  With this in mind, using Facebook to build customer satisfaction is key but monitoring your performance is just as vital.


Facebook – Made to Measure

Okay, so you have built up a healthy following and you feel you are engaging your fans well.  Regular updates and the odd cat meme?  Excellent, but remember that every aspect of your Facebook interaction with fans can be measured to hone your efforts further.   One point to note however, is to link these metrics with your Facebook strategy.

The basic (and the most popular) metrics to note are fan count, likes & comments.  As these grow, they provide many a marketer with a warm and fuzzy feeling of success!  Simply speaking, a rise here is a positive step but if not allied to your objectives they mean surprisingly little.

Measure Against Your Goals – An Example

A brief example that this humble writer can recount was from time spent working with a local visual arts festival.  One early objective was a campaign for artistic submissions launched worldwide to give the festival an international flavour.   The net was spread wide to forums, Facebook & Twitter communities etc to attract them.  After this big push, the event’s Facebook friend count increased by 400% in three weeks!   Cue the celebrations, until the next phase of marketing began.  This was centered upon promoting ticket sales and attendance, where local fans are the obvious target.   The discovery was sobering – our hyper-inflated friend count revealed that most of these new fans were international, from Asia, South America, even Australia…  None exactly in a position to attend a festival in Dublin!

Ready, Take Aim, Measure

What to take from here is that while basic Facebook metrics often highlight positive trends, they may not be the right ones for your aims.

Looking to spread great content?  – Look for number of shares of your links, or its ‘viral’ spread

Promoting an event? – Measure if fans are primarily in your area, promote posts to local users only

Increasing leads & referrals? – Check Google Analytics, are clicks from Facebook to your website growing?

If you want to use social media to improve your business, you’re in for the long game.  Returns may not be rapid, or easy to pinpoint at first but keep your objectives in mind and stay the course.  Growing your Facebook presence must be a means, not an end.  Whatever your business is looking to achieve, use Facebook to assist these goals and measure to suit.


Installing The Digital Marketing Cog Into Your Business Engine

Think of your business as an engine (a finely tuned one, no doubt)! If you introduce a new part or component into any engine, it will affect how the rest of the system performs. This principle is certainly true when looking at the explosive growth of digital marketing and its integration into your marketing and business functions. Let’s look at your business holistically and ensure that any digital integration assists and augments your existing business engine – a new part installed to increase performance!


Digital VS Traditional Marketing – No Need To Argue

Your business now has access to an already massive and ever growing digital marketing toolkit – a huge array of methods to interact with, understand and sell to customers online. Pulling back the curtain into this world means that you can dispense with traditional methods in future and bask in the warm success web based marketing offers? Not quite!

Traditional methods should rather be combined with and enhanced by digital options rather than being dispensed with. These methods have not been made obsolete by any means. Depending on the size of your business, the old reliables of TV, radio and print advertising can still be highly effective means for creating mass brand awareness. Direct mailing has stood the test of time but has arguably been surpassed by email marketing and is an example of digital’s great impact on the marketing old school.

Many companies have married old and new and created a little synergy by making the call to action on these campaigns digital based. Point customers to your website, encourage them to follow and interact on social media. Now these passive, unknown customers are made visible and ready for you to build relationships, leads and sales. This gives your brand an extra dimension through digital and is something we will delve into more tomorrow.

Tune-Up Your Other Functions With Digital

Once the marketing department have caught the digital bug, it often takes longer for these same approaches to be considered throughout the rest of the organisation.

Many firm’s customer service is still primarily phone based, but this burden on costs and man hours can be reduced by introducing platforms such as customer forums, live chat services and even website FAQ sections. If you are increasingly savvy gaining customers digitally, they may be disappointed that they cannot then follow up at other stages of their life cycle with you by these means also.

Digital is here to stay, so integrate it when possible all around your business, it should improve performance to misfiring parts and have the already finely tuned functions purring like a kitten.

Irish Bank Sector – Social Media Analysis #BOTB

Continuing our ‘Battle of the Brands’ social media analysis, this week we’re looking at the Irish Bank Sector.

We’ve compared the biggest Irish banks across Facebook and Twitter. We then analysed their data and highlighted some interesting insights, have a look below to see what we found.

Facebook Analysis



What we discovered

  • Only 2 banks are actually on Facebook, RaboDirect and Bank Of Ireland while AIB have a GAA site
  • BOI posts about sponsored popular culture like Leinster Rugby & Dragons’ Den
  • Rabo posts financial tips & advice, which engages fans and helps build trust
  • Posting is often inconsistent, a week will frequently pass without content

Key Insight

For banks, Facebook is an effective channel for creating a human connection with customers.

RaboDirect is very adept at creating that connection. Their posts are engaging  and helpful to their members. They don’t push promotions or products, instead they educate their fans in the area of finance, offering tips and tricks. This helps to build trust with their fans.

Bank of Ireland uses Facebook to promote what they do, trying to engage with fans via sponsored popular culture. While this is good for brand awareness,  perhaps fans will view them as a source of popular culture, not as a trusted financial institution?

Twitter Analysis



What we discovered

  • The most retweeted message was from Ulster Bank, regarding their technical problems
  • Twitter accounts are mostly used to field complaints and questions
  • Most successful accounts educate with news and advice (RaboDirect, Danske Bank)
  • Least successful accounts only tweet when things go wrong (Ulster Bank)

Key Insight

Twitter makes a great channel for educating or talking. Most banks use their Twitter account as a customer service desk, ie. talking. However, a lot of customer tweets sent to the banks are complaints.

Ulster Bank is currently receiving the most complaints due to their recent technical problems. Our sample indicates that there is a lot of negative sentiment around the brand on Twitter. Followers are annoyed that the service was down, but they are more annoyed that Ulster Bank is not giving them any information on what’s happening, why it’s happening and/or when it will be fixed.

It appears that banks are treating Twitter like a public announcement desk. They keep their messages clean, cold and lacking in information, the same kind of messages they give to newspapers and reporters. They aren’t engaging in the group conversation which is what Twitter does best. In essence, they don’t seem to “get” Twitter or are nervous about being too open to customer complaints on Twitter.

The exceptions to this are RaboDirect and Danske Bank. They use Twitter to educate and their content is frequently redistributed, leading to a high engagement rate. Other banks could learn a lot from these these two banks use of Twitter.

More to come soon!

That’s it for this week. Next week we’ll be looking at Irish politics, looking at who’s doing the best and who needs some work.

If you’re interested in learning more about market analysis, or you’d like a analysis performed for your sector, click here to contact us.

You are what your top content says you are

Did you know that you can easily look at your public data to find out how people perceive your company or what message they associate with your brand? It’s true and it’s simple, all you have to do is look at your top content.

1219415_small (1)Your top content is who your fans think you are

The content that’s shared is the content that fans find engaging. They find it, enjoy it, and then redistribute it to their friends, which leads to more fans. We call this the “shared content feedback loop”. In short, engaging content leads to more fans that like that type of content. This sounds great, but if you’re posting the wrong type of content, then you’re probably getting the wrong type of fans.

When you look at your top content, you see exactly how your fans view you.

How do your fans view your brand?

Want to know? Then why not give it a try!  You can use our Facebook app to do this, it will only take a under a minute. Click here to give it a go.

Now, looking at your top content, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Does this content reflect the purpose of my business?
  • Is the prevalent theme the one I want people to associate with my brand?
  • Would the people that like this content buy from my company

If you answered no to any of these questions, then that means your content doesn’t match your business objectives, and this could be costing you time, effort and worst of all, sales.

Searching for a Niche Group - Magnifying GlassAlign your marketing message with your business objectives

Posting engaging content is good, but make sure that you’re posting the right kind of content. What is the right kind of content? It’s content that your target audience likes and shares to other, like minded people, ie. your potential customers. So the next time you post something, look at it critically and ask yourself, will this lead to more customers.

Remember, it’s not about getting the most fans, it’s about getting the right fans!

If you’re interested in reading more about analytics, then why not sign up for our newsletter. Send an email to and we’ll keep you posted on the latest updates in the world of digital marketing analytics.


Key Metrics to track on Twitter

To find out how well your business is doing on Twitter, measurement is key in revealing which campaigns were successful and which fell short. Metrics can be used to measure the response, engagement and effectiveness of your Twitter campaigns and to detail the impact of your Twitter conversations. Measurement is important to ensure that your efforts are taking you in the right direction. Below is a breakdown of some important Twitter metrics to better understand your Twitter presence.

  • Follower count refers to the number of people following you on Twitter
  • A mention is any Twitter update that contains “@username” anywhere in the body of the Tweet.
  • A retweet is a reposting of someone else’s Tweet
  • Impressions measures your potential reach and is the number of times your message could have been seen, based on the follower count of those talking about you.

Follower count

This is the only metric published for all to see. A large number of followers suggest strong customer awareness and brand recognition. Therefore the higher this number is the better right? Wrong. Lets take two companies for this example we will call them Company X and Company Y. Company X has 1 million followers and company Y has 500,000 followers. This suggests that Company X is twice as successful as Company Y is on Twitter, however this is not in fact the case. There is no point having all those followers if they are not being engaged with.  Yes it’s important to have followers but you may only be ‘reaching’ 10% of these followers. Its better to have a smaller amount of actual followers that engage with your tweets on a regular basis than a large number of followers who never engage at all. In fact, nowadays some companies have a number of ‘followers’ who aren’t even real people. Tools are now available whereby companies can ‘purchase’ followers. Yes their numbers will go up but so will the % of non engagement between the company and their followers.  In terms of a follower ratio, it is always better to be followed by more than the amount of users you follow.

Mentions and Retweets

The main purpose of being on Twitter is to interact with the public which will hopefully in turn lead to sales, greater customer awareness and brand loyalty. Mentions and retweets are vital for a business to succeed on Twitter. It shows that your followers want to engage with the brand and are passionate enough to spread what you’re saying to their own online community by retweeting a message made by you. Nowadays word of mouth marketing is more important than ever so this shows the importance of retweets. A retweet also widens your reach. The greater number of followers the user retweeting the brands statement/ mentioning the brand in a tweet has the better as the audience will be wider. This is why some companies try and get celebrities interacting with them on Twitter.


Impressions measures your potential reach and is the number of times your message could have been seen, based on the follower count of those talking about you. Potential Reach sums a user’s follower count and the sum of followers for any user retweeting any of their Tweets during the previous seven days to estimate the total potential reach in Twitter at any given time. Advantages are that it helps when measuring brand awareness. Disadvantages are that whilst you may have reached 100,000 people, only 10% may have actually read the message. You will never know the exact amount of people who actually read the message.

URL Links

You can track the number of clicks you receive on particular links you share on your Twitter page and by analyzing the links, you can look for consistencies for what is being shared and commented on. That will tell you the type of tweets that get the public engaging with your brand the most.

By David Nulty

The above blog is one of a series of digital marketing and social media metrics blogs that can all be found in our upcoming Marketing Metrics eBook. To sign up for this eBook, please fill in the following form below.



Measure the performance of your YouTube account – Part 2


The Demographics report helps you understand the age range and gender distribution of your audience. You can adjust the date range and geographic region to see how the breakdown of your audience varies.

A further helpful, and once more obvious, metric or analytic piece of information comes from the demographics of who is watching your video. Demographic breakdown enables contend producers to understand the age and gender distribution of their audience.  This allows the content creators to establish a better picture of their average viewer and how to tailor their content for this audience. A bar graph, pie chart and table helps visualize the data. Through the use of either gender or geographic distribution the channel owners are able to display what percentage of their views came from whom and from where in a selected time period. Data can only be gathered on a video by video basis and not an entire channel.

The strength of this metric lies in the information breakdown it provides for each video. By sorting each video’s viewing figures by location, full age distribution and allowing for isolation of gender type the content creator has access to specific data that will enable them to tailor/target current, and indeed future, projects for success. Having access to specific information provided via demographic breakdown allows content producers to picture their average viewer during the creation process and thus tailor videos suitable for them.

The success of the Old Spice Guy campaign by Proctor and Gamble was no fluke. P&G carefully crafted the campaign to reach a specific market segment with an engaging message. Using demographic targeting they were able to ascertain who their competitors were, as well as why people bought those products and their own. Once they identified the segment that they wanted to reach, they chose the attributes of their product that were important to those people and reached out in a way that successfully engaged their target audience. P & G identified several possible segments but decided to go after men who aren’t caught up in their morning routine but who always like to look their best. Understanding that this target audience weren’t making the purchase decisions, P&G knew that any campaign would have to reach the grocery shoppers and make them want to buy the product for the men. Offline they targeted TV shows that both sexes watched together while online they created a series of 16 YouTube videos where the Old Spice Guy responded specifically to influencers.

The success of the targeted demographic campaign for Old Spice is highlighted in the growth attribute to their official Youtube channel. Their brand channel is #1 on YouTube and the #2 most subscribed to. They also saw close to 3000% growth of their audience on Twitter and close to 300% growth in traffic on The use of the demographic metric enabled P&G to target their specific audience type which enabled the brand to achieve great success and recognition.

Playback Location

The Playback Locations report reveals the page, site, or device the video was viewed on.

With the growth of mobile internet and smartphone usage an increasingly important metric to keep up to date with is playback location. The playback location report reveals the page, site, or device the video was viewed on. Although there is a good chance that most people might only watch a video on, there is an equally high chance that a viewer is watching a Facebook or Twitter link on a mobile device. This feature will also allow you to see exactly who is embedding your videos and which blogs/websites are giving you views! This allows content creators to find out what is working and to create more of the same type of content.

In 2011, according to research by Direct Sat TV, the average smartphone user spends nearly four and a half minutes watching videos on their device. Mobile video consumption is growing nearly twice as fast as other method of consuming videos. According to Microsoft, mobile internet usage will surpass desktop internet usage by 2014 with nearly 200+ million videos view on mobile devices already.

If your message is received on the users phone, iPad or some other location which is Youtube friendly but the message has not been set up to be playable in those locations the potential loss of viewers is high. Although people may be able to find your videos they mightn’t be able to view them and so audience growth is impaired. Identification of the playback locations that are trending highest will enable content creators to ensure that any videos they share are set up to play on those specific platforms.

Traffic sources

The Traffic sources report shows the various sites and YouTube features through which the viewer found your content.

Understanding how you are being found by your audience on Youtube is important issue for content creators as it can shed light on a referral source which they hadn’t previously been aware of. The Traffic sources report shows the various sites and YouTube features through which the viewer found your content. Sources of traffic to the content creators site can come from following links from social networking websites like Twitter or Facebook, searches on YouTube or clicks on Suggested Videos thumbnails.


When creating traffic sources report the content creator can tick or un-tick boxes, depending on preferences, next to particular sources to either include or exclude them from their report. This functionality allows the content creator to compare specific sources or isolate individual sources for further examination. Traffic sources are split into various categories and each of these are displayed in the report. These categories include some of the following: views from all traffic sources, views from youtube, views from outside youtube and mobile apps coupled with direct traffic.

The traffic sources metric allows content creators to ascertain how they are being found by users. This is a key metric as it enables the end user to be tracked back to their original source which will then enable content creators to plan for future campaigns and adapt current ones. Content creators should ask themselves are more people finding your video through search or by direct link? Does twitter create a lot of views for you? How can you adjust your video titles, descriptions or keywords to draw more search traffic? Understanding this will greatly increase traffic numbers/video views. For content creators showing up in search is a big one, depending on how you write the headline, tags, and description. Another important aspect is showing up as a recommended video from other videos on the network which means being next to a video that’s fairly relevant to yours.

Understanding traffic sources, as set out above, is becoming more important to content creators and channel owners. Analytics can tell you many things when you know what to measure and this is true for traffic sources. Understanding where traffic is coming from is vitally important to keeping your current content relevant and ensuring any future content is tailored to achieve the greatest impact.

 Audience retention

The Audience retention report is an overall measure of your video’s ability to retain its audience.

The audience retention report is split into two different segments which are extremely useful in measuring the ability of your videos to retain viewers. These two segments are as follows:

  •           Absolute audience retention: Shows the views of every moment of the video as a percentage of the number of views of the beginning of the video. Rewinding and re-watching a particular moment or starting viewing mid-video will push the graph upwards (perhaps even above 100%), while fast-forwarding or abandoning the video will push the graph downwards
  •        Relative audience retention: Shows your video’s ability to retain viewers during playback relative to all YouTube videos of similar length. The higher the graph at any given moment, the proportionately more viewers kept watching your video over the preceding seconds of playback versus other videos at that same moment in their playbacks. Rewinding and re-watching a particular moment will push the graph upwards, while fast-forwarding or abandoning the video will push the graph downwards

Particular interest should be played to the first 15 seconds of a video as this is when the greatest drop off in interest occurs. By interpreting this metric, content creators can see at what points of the video people either stop or start watching. A peak in the middle of the graph, infers that viewers are skipping right to that section of the video. Likewise, a dramatic viewer drop-off at a specific point could influence the inclusion of particular elements that appears at that time in the next video. Finally, if there is a gradual decline in viewership across the video, it could be inferred that the video goes on for too long and viewers got bored.

Use of this metrics will help content creators in retaining viewers as it helps highlight the video specifics that influence viewer’s decisions to either continue or stop watching a video. Going forward this will improve the content put out by the content creators. This will enable the content creator to begin thinking about their content from the eyes of the viewers rather than as the producer.

As has been covered in this piece already, analytics are everywhere and with great reason. The growth of the internet and in turn Web 2.0 has led marketers to have an increased necessity for, in a nutshell, “insider knowledge” of how their marketing efforts are progressing. With Americans streaming 43.5 billion videos in December 2011 alone, up 44% since December 2010, the growth of video can’t be ignored any more.  According to a ComScore report, titled 2012 US digital future in focus, Youtube could be considered to be the main driving factor behind this growth in online video viewing.

The average viewer has showed a willingness to watch, and engage, with content for longer periods of time with video view lengths increased from 5 minutes to 5.8 minutes. Increased numbers of video views and the time spent viewing them has placed increased importance on the metrics associated with video views. With nearly 60 hours of video being uploaded every minute the emphasis now placed on recognising what videos attract specific target audiences has taken precedence for marketing agencies. Youtube Analytics allow, and enable, marketing agencies to target their campaigns to set audiences based on a specific set of parameters that can be tailored using the above.

By Colm Reilly

The above blog is one of a series of digital marketing and social media metrics blogs that can all be found in our upcoming Marketing Metrics eBook. To sign up for this eBook, please fill in the following form below.