How’s Your Digital Footprint?

Digital Footprint

Ever stop and think about where all that stuff you posted back in your Bebo days went? Me neither.

Did you know that the World Wide Web was invented by Tim Berners-Lee in 1989? Initially it was very much a one-way communication method, with a high level of coding expertise required to create and upload content. Fast forward to the noughties and it had evolved into a two-way free for all. The age of citizen journalism was born!

The introduction of the current heavyweight platforms of social media – Facebook in 2004, Twitter in 2006 and Instagram in 2010 – saw the world (and its mother) publishing pictures of their lattes, checking in for pre-holiday airport pints and, of course, sharing their opinions.

So so many opinions. Good ones. Bad ones. Helpful ones. Hateful ones. Not to mention those that come back and bite you in the ass…

Case in point this week in Irish politics when Senator Lorraine Clifford-Lee, a Fianna Fáil politician, found her digital footprint hadn’t only caught up with her, but pretty much squashed her underneath.

The Senator had a number of historic tweets raked up and leaked to the press…an unfortunate coincidence perhaps with the fact she is currently contenting a by-election in Dublin Fingal for a Dáil seat.

Lorraine Clifford Lee

Senator Clifford-Lee made the unfortunate decision to publish a number of tweets in 2011 and 2012 using derogatory terms like ‘Pikey’, ‘Knacker’ and ‘sluts’ to describe things she disapproved of, like Cheryl Cole’s hair extensions…

The tweets were wrong then, they’re wrong now, and there’s no condoning it. Senator Lorraine Clifford-Lee is not the first person in the public eye to suffer because of her digital footprint, and she certainly won’t be the last.

As a world we are constantly being educated and, subsequently, developing. What may have been acceptable language and behaviour in by-gone years, is often not acceptable now. As we understand the offence that certain words or actions may bestow on our fellow peoplekind, there is an expectation that we no longer adopt such traits. This is particularly true of the young and educated.

That’s what makes Senator Clifford-Lee’s tweets so newsworthy. She should have known better.

That said, the internet has changed dramatically over the last ten years, as has our understanding of how it works. Think back to 2010 when Simon Coveney tweeted on the then Taoiseach, Brian Cowen, who was giving a Morning Ireland interview, saying he sounded “somewhere between drunk and hungover” on the program….

Digital Footprint
#ouch

The now infamous tweet led to ‘Garglegate’ and the eventual demise of Cowen’s career. Would Simon really have made that comment if there was a microphone in front of him? If he was speaking to a journalist or on the Six O’Clock News? I think not.

I think Simon Coveney, like so many other people back in the ‘early days’ of social media, simply forgot he was publishing his opinion to the world. Just like Senator Lorraine Clifford-Lee forgot.

It is a fact that publishing online carries the same legal responsibility as publishing on any other platform. The informal nature of social media can often distract us from this reality and lull us into a false sense of security.

Content we publish online is accountable by the same laws of libel, defamation, slander, copyright, etc., as any other publisher. It doesn’t matter if it’s published on a private or business page, it’s still liable. The increasing number of legal cases originating from social media platforms is testament to this new digital age reality.

So how many of us really stop to think about that?

When you’re sitting at home on the couch, phone in hand, publishing your opinions to the world. If someone took a fancy to forensically examine your digital footprint would you be confident that you would emerge unblemished?

If not, it may be a good time to start hitting the delete button.

Lorraine Clifford Lee

COMMUNICATIONS HUB specialise in Digital Marketing Training, Social Media Training and Online Management for Business.  For more information please contact us.

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The Rising Star of Instagram!

See that bright glistening star shooting across the social media sphere?  It’s Instagram…

Shooting Star

The rise of Instagram has continued at a rapid pace in 2019 and with no signs of slowing down, it’s becoming the latest ‘go to’ social media platform for business and personal use alike.

In fact, without a doubt, Instagram is now the most popular topic in the social media training classes I run.

Businesses are flocking to get established on the platform and the weird and wonderful world of Insta stories, hashtags and moving emojis is becoming more and more mainstream for many SMEs.

Even Influencer Marketing is starting to make an appearance in the Insta marketing of many small businesses, as they begin to appreciate the ready-made markets these ‘bloggers’ can bring to their brands.

According to the latest IpsosMRBI statistics, 41% of the Irish population now have Instagram accounts – an increase of 4% since December 2018.  Of those  accounts, 65% of users log on daily, bringing it neck in neck with Facebook in terms of daily usage – no mean feat!

So, what is it about Instagram that is so attractive to users?

  1. Its visually driven appeal offers an escape from so much of the clutter and noise of other social media platforms.
  2. It,s not (yet) as advert driven as Facebook, allowing for a more seamless user experience.
  3. It feeds into the popularity of video advertising and storytelling marketing.
  4. It’s fun!

Instagram

So if your business is burying its head in an Insta-sandpit, it’s definitely time to shake it free and get yourself set up!  Instagram is the fastest growing social media platform in Ireland (and around the world), with no sign of slowing down.

And, as we all know – where customers gather, businesses quickly follow!

#GetYourInstaOn

Instagram

Karen Twomey of COMMUNICATIONS HUB specialises in Digital Marketing Training, Social Media Training and Online Management for Business.  For more information contact her on karen@communicationshub.ie

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Social Media Stats Ireland 2019

Ipsos MRBI recently released their most up-to-date social media stats for Ireland and there were very few surprises.

Social Media Stats Ireland

Instagram has continued its enormous growth with 41% of the Irish population now having accounts – an increase of 4% since December 2018.  Of those who have accounts, 65% use it daily, bringing it neck in neck with Facebook in terms of daily usage.

Facebook has remained at a steady 62% in relation to account ownership in Ireland.  This is the same percentage as back in December.  We mustn’t forget that Facebook ownership is probably at a saturated level, so it’s no big surprise that it generally doesn’t see any significant changes.  Of those who have accounts, 65% use it daily, a 1% decrease since the last statistics.

LinkedIn fell by 2% bringing it in line with Twitter account ownership, which saw a 1% growth in users.  Twitter experienced an enormous growth in daily usership of 5% over the same period, bringing it up to 40%.

A new arrival on the on the Ipsos MRBI Irish social media stats is TikTok which has been measured at only 2% account ownership, however those who have accounts are very active with 33% using it daily.

Social Media Stats Ireland

In terms of social media messaging services, WhatsApp remains the most popular choice of download, closely followed by Facebook Messenger which saw a 3% growth in users over the last 6 months.

The losers of the world of social media messaging continue to be Viber, down 3% since December, and Tinder and Snapchat, which have remained stagnant over the six month period.

Social Media Stats Ireland

All in all, the trends of the last twelve months seem to be continuing among social media users in Ireland.  Facebook remains the most popular and most used social media platform, while Instagram is the fastest growing social media platform in the country and is sure to catch up to Facebook in terms of account ownership figures in the near future.

The future is social – make sure your business is!

Karen Twomey of COMMUNICATIONS HUB specialises in Digital Marketing Training, Social Media Training and Online Management for Business.  For more information contact her on karen@communicationshub.ie 

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It’s not what you say, it’s how you say it

Last weekend I attended the All Together Now festival set in the stunning landscape of Curraghmore House in Portlaw, Co Waterford.

Having purchased our tickets months back, we were eagerly anticipating what was promised to be a weekend of “like-minded people, music lovers, passionate performers, families, artists, musicians, creators, rebels, and refugees of a changing festival landscape…”

Wow, high hopes indeed.

My husband was lucky enough to escape from the ‘kiddie run asylum’ we call home on Thursday night and went off with some friends to get set up in anticipation of my arrival the next day.

Chomping at the bit on Friday, I all but did a drive by dumping of the kids at the grandparents’, and took off all smug and chilled in the knowledge that within the hour I’d be getting my festival vibe on with a nice cool can of Heineken.

Little did I know…

All Together Now

The traffic woes of the forsaken All Together Now festival goers have been well documented and, as there’s a good chance I’m still suffering from Post Traumatic Stress disorder from what should have been a 1 hour maximum drive instead taking 5 1/2 hours, I’m not even going to go there again.  You can Google it if I’ve lost you.

Yes, I did mean FIVE AND A HALF HOURS.  The last hour of which I spent in desperation for a wee.  Which at least helped pass the time as I contemplated all kind of acrobatics to relieve myself into the only vessel I contained, an empty coffee cup – you’ll be glad to know I resisted, just about.

So anyway, I got there, and to a toilet.  It wasn’t the end of the world.  Sh*t happens and all that.

What really did suck though was the completely inadequate response from the organisers of All Together Now, who basically ignored what was happening and went on a social media shutdown.  They only updated their accounts later that night to blame the delays on the number of people attending.

Now, I’m no expert in event management but when you sell 22,000 tickets for your event, you better prepare for 22,000 people to attend.  Later Friday night they shared how amazing Fontaines DC were, which was scant consolation for those still stuck in traffic and missing the fun.

You probably don’t need me to tell you the response this generated across their social media platforms all weekend…

All Together Now

But hey, we’re all human, we all make mistakes.  The thing about mistakes though is that most of them can be forgiven…if you take responsibility and apologise.  Blaming other people for your mistakes is just plan rude.  And in the words of Patti Smith – the people have the power – especially in the world of social media.

After mature reflection (and a possible change of PR companies), the organisers of All Together Now did take responsibility and went on a damage limitation strategy.  Fair play, and better late than never.  They put on a great festival in so many ways and hopefully they’ll learn some valuable lessons from this year’s fiasco.

It did leave a bad taste though  – not to mention a very negative online footprint (we won’t even go there on the environmental footprint).

As someone who works in PR/Digital Marketing I always tell my clients that mistakes can and do happen.  There’s a fail safe formula for dealing with them though – acknowledge, apologise and promise to learn from it.  Simples.

All Together Now

COMMUNICATIONS HUB specialise in Digital Marketing Training, Social Media Training and Online Management for Business. 

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Digital Marketing Courses Cork

It’s that time of the year again when the shadow of those long winter nights is starting to loom.  It’s no coincidence that autumn is the busiest time for night courses – it’s a great time of the year to refocus and take up a new challenge after enjoying all those lazy sunny evenings (ish!).

Digital Marketing Courses Cork

August is always a busy time for me, putting together courses and fielding queries.  This year, there’s enormous demand for upskilling in the area of Digital Marketing and Social Media and I’ll be running numerous courses throughout the autumn.  There are courses to suit all levels of skill and of varying length, depending on the final qualification – internal certification, QQI L5, Diploma.
For ease of reference I’ve included a list of the confirmed Digital Marketing courses below.  There will be new courses added over the coming weeks, so keep an eye on our website!
If the commitment of a night course is too much for you right now but you’d still like to improve your digital marketing and social media skills, we offer one-to-one tailor made sessions and workshops.  Contact Communications Hub for more information!

Digital Marketing Courses for Autumn 2019

  • 4-week Social Media for Business Course running with IRD Duhallow starting in September:
  • 10 week QQI L5 Digital Marketing Course in Mallow College:
  • 10 week course in Cork Training Centre, Bishopstown:
If you need any more information on the above, please don’t hesitate to contact us! Email: karen@communicationshub.ie
Digital Marketing Training

COMMUNICATIONS HUB specialise in Digital Marketing Training, Social Media Training and Online Management for Business. 

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Social Media Training

Now that the summer is upon us, we’re winding down after a busy few months of Digital Marketing courses in Cork.

Although, we’re not relaxing too much as September is gearing up to be a very busy month with courses running in Cork Training Centre, Mallow College of Further Education and IRD Duhallow!

The summer months can be a quieter time for many businesses and so it’s a great opportunity to take some time to re-evaluate and even upskill.

social media training

Communications Hub offer one-to-one tailor made social media training workshops ranging from 2 hours upwards and covering a variety of social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and website blogging.

We can look at putting together online marketing campaigns, running paid adverts, using keywords/hashtags, as well as creating professional looking online graphics and videos.

With 86% of Irish people now researching goods and services online prior to making a commitment to purchase, it has never been more important for businesses to have an effective and targeted online presence.

For more information or to put together a social media training workshop for your business, contact us on karen@communicationshub.ie and we’ll be delighted to help your business stand out online!

#DigitalMarketing #SocialMediaTraining #OnlineTraining

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Why YouTube?

Does your business have a YouTube channel?  If not, here’s a few good reasons why you should!

Over 77% of the population use YouTube every week – so whether you know it or not, you’re probably a regular user of the platform too!

YouTube was established in 2005 and has grown from strength to strength over the years – much helped, of course, by the explosion of video as a content marketing strategy.  It is now the world’s second largest search engine (after Google) and the second most visited site after Facebook.

The average YouTube user spends an unbelievable 21 minutes per browsing session – compare this to Facebook at 11 minutes, Instagram at 6 and eBay at 6! (Similarweb.com 2019).

YouTube

 

In fact, over one billion hours of videos are now watched on YouTube every day with 1.9 billion monthly active logged-in users.  Of those 75% report watching YouTube on their mobile devices (Hubspot 2019) – a fact that should be kept in mind when designing YouTube content and adverts.

Useless Fact

The most watched video on YouTube is Despacito by Luis Fonsi.  Gangnam Style was the first you-tube video to be watched over a billion times.  It took five months to hit 1 billion views – in comparison to Despacito which took just over 97 days!

YouTube

Moving swiftly on…

YouTube ads can be In-Stream, In-Search and In-Display and research has found that they are 84% more likely to hold attention than TV ads.  After all, who watches live TV anymore!

YouTube ads can be especially good for building brand awareness, influencing behaviour and driving customers to your website…and who doesn’t want more customers, right?!

Of course, I can’t write a blog on YouTube without mentioning the important fact that it’s owned by Google and rates very highly in terms of SEO and SERP.  Couple that with the fact that video gets up to 60% more interaction than images online and it makes Youtube a no brainer for any digital marketing strategy!

I bet you’ve been singing this in your head since I mentioned it, right?  Here you go…

#YouTube #DigitalMarketing #VideoMarketing

Karen Twomey MA BSc is a freelance Digital Marketing Consultant and delivers a part-time QQI L5 Digital Marketing course in Mallow College of Further Education and a Digital Marketing Institute Professional Diploma in Cork Training Centre.  She also provides bespoke one-to-one and group training sessions.  For more information contact karen@communicationshub.ie

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Social Media Training Charleville

⭐️ UPCOMING SOCIAL MEDIA FOR BUSINESS COURSE ⭐️

Time to improve your online skills?

We’re running a group training session in social media in Charleville E-Centre on Wednesday 15th May from 9.30am to 12.30pm. We’ll be covering the following

  • Improve Social Media Skills
  • Learn to Create Better Online Content
  • Run Social Media Marketing Campaigns
  • Improve Online Following

For more information get in touch!

Communications Hub
🏫 E Charleville Enterprise Centre
📅 Wednesday 15th May  9.30am – 12.30pm
💰 €60pp (booking essential as spaces limited 😃)
Book online at: https://www.eventbrite.ie/e/social-media-for-business-workshop-tickets-60121258302

 

Social Media Training Charleville

Karen Twomey is a Digital Marketing Consultant with Communications Hub  and specialises in providing Digital Marketing and Social Media Training for businesses.  For further information Tel: 087 7642576 or email: Karen@communicationshub.ie

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Social Media Training Sessions Cork

Time to improve your online skills?

I’m currently putting together a number of training sessions that can be delivered on a one-to-one or small group basis designed to help those in business to make the most of their online presence and marketing.

The courses focus on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn, which are the top four most used social media platforms in Ireland right now (By the way – Instagram is now the fastest growing social media platform in terms of accounts and usage in Ireland!).

Social Media Training Sessions Cork

Social Media Training Sessions Cork

While most businesses have an online presence of some description, the demand now tends to be for help with how best to manage that presence.  This can be anything from training on content creation, SEO and implementing targeted  social media campaigns.

As every business is different and will have different goals and targets online, these more personalised online training sessions tend to be the most effective for business owners in terms of practical tips and take home points – they also have the added advantage of being more time effective than longer courses too!

Communications Hub have delivered digital marketing courses and social media training to all different types of clients over the years including those in existing businesses, start-up businesses, community organisations and those in the public eye, such as politicians.

The type of online presence and content needed by clients may vary depending on the type of organisation involved but the skills needed don’t and no matter what your online capabilities are, we can put together a training session to suit your needs.

So what are you waiting for?  Make today the day you help move your business ahead online and future-proof your marketing!

Social Media Training Sessions Cork

For more information on Communications Hub’s digital marketing and social media training sessions please contact us or keep an eye on our website and social media accounts for regular updates!

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Facebook Training Workshop Mallow

Time to improve your online skills?

This upcoming Facebook for Business Workshop in Mallow will help you improve your use of social media, increase your online reach and help you to create effective content.

Facebook Workshop Mallow

The workshop is one of a number of social media training courses that will take place in CoWork Mallow, with an Instagram for Business workshop scheduled to take place on Wednesday 20th March.

Spaces are limited to 6, cost €60 per person and must be pre-booked by emailing karen@communicationshub.ie or phoning 0877642575.

Take the first step today, and help your business stand out from the crowd!

Karen Twomey is a freelance Social Media Consultant with Communications Hub  and provides one-to-one and group social media training sessions as well as social media management.

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PR, Digital Marketing & Online Training