Ireland

Most Active Counties on Twitter in Ireland

This is an infographic we recently created for Bank of Ireland. We took the volume of tweets per county and overlayed it with CSO population data to illustrate the volume of tweets per 1,o00 of the population. By adding this extra layer of data we can more accurately show what counties generate the most Twitter activity.

From past research (and common sense given the size of it’s population!), we know Dublin generates the most amount of tweets, but when you drill down to a comparable portion of the population as we have here, we see per head of population Dubliners are the 4th most active behind Louth, Waterford and Monaghan.

The study was compiled by analysing all geo-tagged tweets in July 2013 made in Ireland which was 5% of all tweets made in the country and totalled 1.25 million tweets.

Tweets per 1,000 of the population in Ireland

Tweets per 1,000 of the population in Ireland

Facebook Statistics Ireland (October 2012)

Facebook have just released some new-ish statistics on the Irish market, which paints a picture of how we’re using the social network not just in terms of duration and mobile access, but on a deeper level – what we’re sharing and when we do it.

I say new-ish because some of these are from a study last March, so apologies if you have seen these before.

Facebook Users

  • Over 70% of Irelands Facebook users return DAILY
  • Irish people have an average of 268 friends
  • 25 to 34 year olds account for 30% of Irish Facebook users
  • 50% of users access via their mobile
  • There are 2,281,680 Facebook users in Ireland (Socialbakers.com)
  • Almost 170,000 new Facebook profiles have been created since April (Socialbakers.com)
  • Most of these have been added in August & September 2012 (Socialbakers.com)

Facebook Content

  • We like 133 million items per month
  • Leave 81 million comments
  • Send 77 million messages
  • Upload 24 million photos
  • Posted 14 million wall posts
  • Posted 9 million status updates
  • Checked-in 471,000 times
  • Uploaded 103,000 videos

When we use Facebook

  • Unsurprisingly check-ins hit a peak on Saturdays
  • Dublin Airport is the number 1 check in location (Socialbakrs.com)
  • Photo and video uploads peak on a Sunday
  • We’re least likely to fan a page on a Saturday, most likely on a Monday
  • We send the fewest messages, and post the fewest comments, on a Saturday
  • The weekends (Fri – Sun) we post our status updates

Facebook vs Google, Yahoo & Microsoft

  • We spend 5.01 mins on Facebook looking at 490 pages
  • 3.26 mins on Google looking at 272 pages
  • 0.38 seconds on Yahoo looking at 44 pages
  • 1.00 min on Microsoft sites looking at 51 pages

Facebook Statistics Ireland (May 2012)

The second post on Social Media statistics for Ireland looks at how we use Facebook.

From the first post, looking at social media in general, we can see that Facebook is by far and away the most popular social network. It’s used by 53% of the population of the country. According to Ipsos MRBI this makes it 3.5 times as popular as the next social network – Twitter. The amount of people using Facebook has increased by 6% since May 2011 – which is the highest single jump since Ipsos began reporting in Feb 2012.  However, what I don’t have access to is the amount of time people are spending on Facebook or any social network in Ireland for that matter, although international research would indicate that we are spending more time on Facebook, not less.

Facebook in Ireland

The Facebook analytics company Socialbakers is a great source of data related to Facebook. It’s figures differ slightly to those of Ipsos MRBI when it says;

  • Facebook is used by 46% of the total Irish population (Iposos said 53%, 1)
  • This means almost 70% of the total online population of Ireland are on Facebook (4)
  • There’s 2.1 million Facebook accounts registered to Irish people. However this isn’t to say 2.1 million people use Facebook as this will include duplicate accounts
  • 53% of users log in daily (9)
  • 83% of users log in at least fortnightly (3)

Facebook by age group (1)

From the Ipsos MRBI survey;

  • 85% of 15 – 24 year olds are on Facebook
  • 62% of 25 – 34 year olds
  • 56% of 35 – 44 year olds
  • 31% of 45 – 54 year olds
  • 29% of 55 – 64 year olds
  • 9% of those aged 65+
  • The average age of Facebook user in August 2011 was 30.5 years.

Facebook by Gender (4)

  • Females account for 53% of users and males 47%

Facebook by social classification (1)

  • 56% of ABC1
  • 44% of C2DE
  • 18% of Farmers

Irish Kids 9 to 12 years of age on Facebook (7)

In a January 2011 study into Irish kids and teenagers use of social media conducted by the London School of Economics, (LSE) found…

  • 21% of Irish kids aged 9 – 12 years have a Facebook profile
  • 49% of this group admitted to faking the age on their profiles
  • 14% of this group admitted to having their profiles set to public
  • 6% listed their home address and telephone number on their profile
  • 11% listed their school
  • 8% have more than 100 contacts
  • 25% contacted people they didn’t know (apart from through the internet) on social networks (including Facebook and others)

Irish teen’s 13 to 16 years of age on Facebook (LSE)

  • 47% of Irish teen’s aged 13 – 16 years have a Facebook profile
  • 14% of this age group admitted to faking the age on their profile
  • 8% of this age group admitted to having their profiles set to public
  • 11% listed their home address and telephone number on their profile
  • 58% listed their school
  • 35% have more than 100 contacts
  • 22% contacted people they didn’t know (apart from through the internet) on social networks (including Facebook and others)

Facebook Use Among 3rd Level Students (5)

In a November 2011 UPC study into the use of social media by 3rd level students found:

  • 96% of 3rd level students use Facebook (5)
  • 75% of 3rd level students use Facebook as their main communication channel, compared with 6% who use email (6)

Facebook in Politics (8)

In a study by Dr Ciarán McMahon, a lecturer in psychology at Dublin Business School, into last year’s Irish elections, he found;

  • Candidates who had a Facebook account received 4,402 votes on average
  • Candidates who did NOT have a Facebook account received 2,100 votes on average
  • Candidates who had a Twitter account received 4,885 votes on average
  • Candidates who did NOT have a Twitter account received 2,676 votes on average
  • 78% of candidates had a Facebook account
  • while 57% had a Twitter account

Top 10 Check-in Places

  1. Dublin Airport – 38,034 check ins
  2. Temple Bar – 22,127
  3. The O2 Arena – 18,584
  4. Dublin Airport Terminal – 15,578
  5. Cork Airport – 10,744
  6. Olympia Theatre – 7,623
  7. Cineworld – 6,701
  8. St. Stephen´S Green – 6,638
  9. Blanchardstown Centre – 5,987
  10. Shelbourne Hotel – 3,826

Top 10 Check-In Place’s outside of Dublin (national position)

  1. Kildare Village – 2,989 Check-ins (16th)
  2. Cork International Airport Hotel – 2,431 (26th)
  3. Cliffs of Moher – 2,225 (30th)
  4. The Quays Pub, Galway – 1,886 (44th)
  5. Fota Island – 1,639 (53rd)
  6. Geoff’s Bar, Waterford – 1,446 (71st)
  7. Mantra, Maynooth – 1,288 (79th)
  8. The Marshes Shopping Centre, Dundalk – 1,269 (80th)
  9. Shannon – 1,263 (82nd)
  10. Drumoland Castle Hotel – 1,227 (86th)

Irish Brands on Facebook

Socialbakers is an incredible source of information on brands using Facebook in Ireland. Their table of brands with the most fans is a little skewed as it also includes international pages of Irish brands. These international pages are aimed at a larger audience and so are not directly comparable to pages of brands who only operate in Ireland. But it’s still worth a read.

References

  1. Ipsos MRBI Feb 2012
  2. Facebook.com
  3. Ipsos MRBI Nov 2011
  4. SocialBakers.com
  5. UPC
  6. Data Solutions
  7. London School of Economics
  8. Dr Ciarán McMahon study
  9. Ipsos MRBI May 2012

Irish Social Media Statistics (May 2012)

*Updated June 25th with latest Ipsos MRBI stats.

It’s been a year since I wrote anything on social media statistics in Ireland, so it’s about time for an update.

This is the first in a series of posts on Irish Social Media Statistics. This post will focus on general statistics available on the use of social networks in Ireland, our online habits and even smartphone penetration – these all matter. Later posts will look at specific networks these including;

The series aim’s to bring together all the research thats currently out there. It’s taken a good bit of time to put together so do please go forth and share.

Internet Use in Ireland

This first section is about how we use the internet in this country.

  • A recent ComReg report suggest Irish users spend 10 hours 7 minutes online each week (1)
  • However Comscore reports this figure as 20.1 hours per month, with users visiting 1,966 pages on average (2)
  • An AMAS survey found 77% of 16 to 29 year olds are on the internet every day
  • 64% of 30 to 44 year olds are online every day
  • 43% of 45 to 69 year olds are online every day
  • 21% of 60 to 74 year olds are online every day
  • 25% of those surveyed said they hadn’t been online in the last 3 months with 62% of those in the 60 – 74 age group. (3)

The takeaway here is that we’re spending more time online than ever before, which isn’t a surprise. In a late 2010 study Comscore were reporting we were spending just over 18 hours a month online, less than two years later and this has increased by 10% to over 20 hours. The AMAS figures also show an increase in how many of us are going online each month – in all age categories, including ‘silver surfers’. More of us are using the internet and for longer than ever before.

Social Network Use in Ireland (4, 5)

In a *May 2012 survey Ipsos MRBI asked 1,000 respondents what social network, if any, did they have a profile on;

  • 53% had a Facebook account (+6% since May 2011)
  • 42% Do not have any social network account (-6%)
  • 15% Twitter (+5%)
  • 13% LinkedIn (+5%)
  • 13% Google+ (+13% since May and 3% since Feb ’12)
  • 1% Foursquare (n/c)

Social networking growth has levelled off in Ireland, perhaps we have reached saturation point. While the figures above show small percentage growth for all networks in the last 12 months, with new kid on the block Google+ having as many users as LinkedIn and just 2% behind Twitter. Foursquare has remained niche and will probably remain so. What these figures don’t tell us is – how long are we spending on these networks. A person saying the have a Google+ account and logs in once per month, is very different to someone who Tweets on a daily basis.

In another survey of 1,000 social network users for Nokia DMA’s;

  • 77% stated Facebook was their preffered social network
  • 7% stated Twitter
  • 72% of resondents update their profile from home
  • 17% on the move (mobile) 11% update from work
  • 59% of people use Social Media to keep in touch with friends and family
  • 35% of people access social media mostly on their smartphone

Irish Parents of Kids & Teens (LSE)

In a January 2011 study into Irish kids and teenagers, aged 9 – 16 years of age, and their use of social media was conducted by the London School of Economics (13). They found:

  • 39% of Irish parents don’t allow their children to have a social network profile
  • 42% of parents allow their children to use social networks freely
  • 20% of parents allow their children to use the social networks without supervision
  • 60% of females aged 9 to 16 years and 58% of males aged 9 to 16 years have social networking profiles (this figure includes Facebook and others)

Smartphone Penetration in Ireland (12)

In a study carried out by Red C into smartphone penetration in Ireland in November 2011, it found;

  • 49 of the irish Population own a smartphone
  • This was up 14% on March 2011
  • This figure is expected to rise to 71% by the end of 2012
  • 37% of males own a smartphone
  • 32% of females

Smartphone by Demographics

  • 39% of under 25 own a smartphone
  • 41% of 25 – 34 year olds own a smartphone
  • 37% of 35 – 44 year olds own one
  • 33% of 45 – 54 year olds
  • 19% of 55+
  • 54% of ABC 1′s own a smartphone
  • 56% of Dubliner’s own a smartphone
  • 46% of smartphone owners own an Apple device
  • 16% Samsung
  • 9% HTC
  • 9% Blackberry
  • 7% Nokia

Advertising (6)

According to the IAB online Adspend study, €5.8 million was invested in advertising on social media websites in 2011.

Social Media in the Workplace (5,6,7)

An Integrity Solutions survey of 84 IT and security professionals in December found;

  • 24% of Irish businesses block all employee access to social media sites
  • 27% allow some restricted access
  • 49% allow full access

In a survey conduced by Candidate Manager in the UK & Ireland(9);

  • 14% of Irish businesses use social media to scout for staff
  • Of these 92% of these use LinkedIn, 43% Facebook, 32% Twitter
  • In a study by The Wheel, 64% of Irish businesses were found to use some form of social media for business activities (8)

Social Media & Product Opinions (10)

A TNS Digital Life study into how consumers use social media to share product opinions.

  • 51% of Irish people like to write about brands on social media
  • This compares with a global average of 47%

When asked about motivation to write about brands;

  • 74% did so because of a special offer or promotion
  • 47% did so seeking advice

A study by Accenture (13) into the Irish market found

  • 67% of Irish people use social media to explore their options before making a purchase decision
  • 46% of us will write about our purchase/product experience
  • 36% of us trust comments about brands that come from people we know
  • 26% say negative comments affect the purchase decision
  • 30% of us have posted negative comments online

Social Media & Non Profits (8)

In a survey of 178 charity organisations conducted by The Wheel, the national representative and support body for community, voluntary and charity organisations;

  • 90% of Irish non-profit organisations use social media
  • 75% love or like using social media as part of their operations
  • 72% said social media has had a positive impact on their relationship with stakeholders
  • 49% struggle to implement it
  • 75% use social media channels to reach potential supporters
  • 67% use it to enhance existing relationships with consumers

Of the social networks at their disposal;

  • 81% said they use Facebook
  • 43%  use Twitter
  • 31% are on Youtube
  • 29% frequent LinkedIn
  • 18% blog on WordPress
  • 18% upload to Flickr

How popular are they on social networks?

  • 35% of charities have fewer than 100 followers on social media
  • 23% have between 1,000 and 5,000 followers
  • 6.2% have more than 5,000 followers

Social Media & Politics (11)

In a study by Dr Ciarán McMahon, a lecturer in psychology at Dublin Business School, into last year’s Irish elections, he found;

  • Candidates who had a Facebook account received 4,402 votes on average
  • Candidates who did NOT have a Facebook account received 2,100 votes on average
  • Candidates who had a Twitter account received 4,885 votes on average
  • Candidates who did NOT have a Twitter account received 2,676 votes on average
  • 78% of candidates had a Facebook account
  • while 57% had a Twitter account

References

  1. ComReg Quaterly report
  2. Comscore Study
  3. Amas
  4. Ipsos MRBI
  5. Nokia DMA’s
  6. IAB Online Adspend Study
  7. Integrity Solutions Survey
  8. The Wheel Survey
  9. Candidate Manager Survey of UK & Ireland
  10. TNS Digital Life Study
  11. Dr Ciarán McMahon study
  12. Red C
  13. Accenture
  14. London School of Economics

 

How an Irish Band Used Social Media to Sell Out Their First Gig

King Kong Company live from Feb 4th 2012

Here’s a project I’ve been working on the side for over a year for a band called King Kong Company. On February 4th last they played their first gig in front of an audience of 600 people, using only Facebook and Youtube to build their fanbase and, indirectly, sell all those tickets!

How did they do it?

1. They had a Plan.

They wanted to play a gig, not just a gig but a great gig. The band originally played together in the late 1990′s and didn’t simply want to re-hash old tracks or play a load of new tracks to an audience who didn’t know them. This is where Facebook and Youtube stepped in – music could be released online and distributed easily. So, in February 2011 they set about releasing one music video per month for a year.

 

2. The Budget was €0.00

It’s a big undertaking to produce 12 music videos – thats roughly 60 minutes of good quality content. They needed stories, actors, locations, crew, choreographer, director and someone to do the marketing. They begged and borrowed the lot. The biggest investment was peoples time, but lucky they’re a nice bunch so could call in a lot of favours.

 

3. A Lot of Hard Work

By releasing one track per month, instead of spending an intense amount of time producing and releasing an album, they spread the workload out over a year. That sounds easy doesn’t it, but between producing the tracks and producing the videos there wasn’t much room for error. Once one video was complete producing the next track was already under way. Besides myself they had a Choreographer and Director who worked on all the videos, such was our commitment the band considered us three as members too.

Perhaps the biggest asset going for the band was they made music people were interested in, the videos were always engaging and sometimes just plain weird. Oherwise this project would’ve gone nowhere.

This is Damn You Dorothy, one of the most loved tracks.

 

4. Identify All Opportunities

This sounds a bit vague but you have to be looking for as many opportunities as possible to promote the content.

Each new track was seen as an ‘event’ by fans who were actively encouraged to share it on Facebook – this helped build fans and get views. I found Facebook video was only ok, but Youtube was better. Just try Google search a Facebook video for one. Another thing going in Youtube’s favour was the cumulative view count – it’s not all about popularity but there’s something reassuring to new viewers if they’re watching something that is popular. After testing one video launch with Facebook video, I opted to keep all the videos on Youtube only.

Remember to put a URL – such as your website or Facebook Page into the first 2 lines of the Youtube description. When it’s embedded in Facebook the URL shows as a live link. Better still get people to share direct from your page as it the wall post will also feature ‘via KingKong Company’ which is another live link.

We also got several admins of pages with tens of thousands of music fans, based in the south-east to post the videos. We didn’t overdo it, but the month we announced the live gig we did it via Youtube annotations on the latest video and had that video posted to pages with a total of 75,000 fans in our target audience.

The band scooped the Irish Music TV Viewers Choice Award back in November. This was a public vote with the band up against Ham Sandwich, Villagers, Lisa Hannigan and 40+ other Irish bands. The award was won by the band with the most active fans – which was a huge surprise for us. The award did very little to get any kind of press coverage outside of the South-East again, but got the band plenty of airplay on Beat 102-103, the station with the biggest 18 – 35 year old audience in the region and several of the DJ’s got behind the bands music. For that the effort was worth it – and a few more bloggers became aware of the band.

One of the more ‘normal’ videos for Uncle Trouble – it’s Waterford, but for anyone who knows the city, it doesn’t look like it.

 

5. A bit of Luck

Admittedly there was some luck involved, but most of it came from everyone making such a huge effort in the first place. For example the IMTV award came at the perfect time, just as the gig was announced, this was quickly followed by a new track too. All of which managed to keep people talking about the band.

Waterford has suffered badly in the recession and this is evident in its nightlife. Go back five years and Waterford rivalled Cork in terms of club nights, gigs and events. Today all its clubs are mainstream, you won’t pay more than €5 to get in and drinks are as cheap as €2.50 – on a Saturday night. Our tickets were €10 and the venue couldn’t compete on those cheap drinks prices. This put us at a disadvantage in one sense where people were unlikely to stumble in off the street for the gig, but in another it meant the crowd were going to be all fans.

Also going for us was the amount of people travelling. We had people from Cork, Tipperary and big bunch from Dublin – which shouldn’t be a surprise since over 60% of our Facebook fans are based there. They travelled because the gig was billed as the one and only gig the band would do. The ‘plan’ was to do one great gig, but considering the success and feedback from it the band will play again.

 

6. The Result

Just over a year since the first video made its debut, they now have 13 very well received videos (inlucing the latest one below), an award, a very active Facebook community begging for another gig, and not to mention 600 people out there who walked away from the gig telling people how good it was.

King Kong Company on: Youtube, Facebook, Soundcloud

Check out the atmosphere in this clip from the show, because when you break it down, this was just a local band playing a local gig.

Social Media Articles From the Neworld Blog

I’m not going to be posting anything this week. However, I’m not sure if you also check out the Neworld blog, where I write two posts per week on social media. There’s a link above to it. Some posts worth checking out;

1. Best 15 Twitter Campaigns

I found some really great campaigns from the last few years. Twitter’s 140 characters might seem small but its what you do with them that counts!

 

2. How a Facebook Campaign Increased Sales by 35%

A Neworld client Glenisk increased their sales by 35% through an integrated marketing campaign that centred around a Facebook app.

 

3. Why People Aren’t Checking into Facebook Places or Foursquare

As the headline says, just why aren’t people checking in?

 

4. Irish Social Media Statistics (May 2011)

Facebook, Twitter, Youtube and LinkedIn statistics for Ireland as of May 2011. Stats are pulled from a dozen or so sources so are very indepth. Took a weekend to put together too!

 

5. Ten Innovative Facebook Commerce Examples

I pick out ten of the best examples of commerce on Facebook.

 

6. The Best Five Facebook Check-in Deal Examples

Facebook Check-in Deals launched in Ireland in March, so I put together the best 5 examples I could find.

 

7. Ten Facebook Newsfeed Marketing Tips

Did you know 85% of your fans interaction with your brand on Facebook happens in the Newsfeed? Here’s ten ways to make the most of your newsfeed

 

8. Five Great Uses of Facebook Credits

The best examples of how Facebook Credits are being used outside of games. Credits are going to become an integral part to the platform so lets see how some early adopters are using them.

There’s plenty more articles, tips and resources at this link, and not all of them are in list format either!

Enjoy. Regular posting back next week.

#IRLday Getting Ireland Trending

Tomorrow (Monday May 23rd) is #IRLday a semi official attempt by the Twitter users of Ireland to get the country trending on the microblogging site. It’s no coincidence that the day also clashes with the arrival of President Obama on his first visit to the country. The aim is not just to get the country trending (to be one of the Top 10 tweeted topics), but to use the occasion to promote Ireland as a tourist destination.

This is the brainchild of Pocket Native, an Irish software company who provide travellers with time and location relevant information to enhance their holidays. The #IRLday initiative  has received the backing of the office of An Taoiseach, Discover Ireland, Enterprise Ireland and Bord Bia amongst others. This follows a number of other initiatives aimed at giving Ireland a unique positioning in International tourism.

Twitter’s Trending Topics

So how does one go about creating a trending topic on Twitter? It’s not just about having a certain number of tweets containing the desired hashtag. According to Sociable News, Trending Topics, also rely on the number of different users using the hashtag, the amount being steady over time and the time zone they are in.

This is no mean feat either. There’s roughly 400,000 Irish users on Twitter. 150,000 Irish tweets are sent per day, 85% of those by just 22% of the Twitter population. So to get #IRLday trending will take a big effort to push it into the trending topics of the 300 million Twitter users.

What is #IRLday? (From Bloggertone)

“#IRLday is a chance for anyone interested in increasing Irish tourism to have a coordinated, international voice to let the world know what’s so great about Ireland. Specifically, it:

Allows communities to tell people why they should come visit, what’s special about their area and why they live there

Allows tourism and hospitality providers to promote what’s great and special about their businesses, their community and their interpretation of the world-famous Irish hospitality

Shows how resilient, vibrant, enthusiastic and fun Ireland can be

Gets American and other tourists excited about visiting Ireland”

So Irish Twitter users, and lovers of Ireland, at home and abroad get tweeting about Ireland tomorrow. Don’t forget the hashtag. More details on how you can take part here.

#IRLday Official Website

Recent Interview on Dublin City FM

I returned to Alex Gibsons show The Persuaders a couple of weeks back on Dublin City FM. We talked Facebook, and the importance of active and engaged fans over just the acquisition of new fans. Download and description of the show below.

Download

In this podcast I’m joined by Roisin Ni Mhordha…and our guests are:

Alex Fitzgerald, editor of Irish Tatler: The Men’s Issue and Terry Prone, writer, broadcaster and Chairperson of The Communications Clinic. We discuss  the male image and also how the media is addressing the need to cater specifically for men with examples of Irish Tatler bringing out The Men’s Issue and Paul Galvin’s column in the Irish Independent’s Weekend Magazine.

And we discuss Facebook Marketing Tips with Luke Abbott from Neworld Associates, including the need to build fan engagement with practical case-study examples.

 

 

The Marketing of Brand Ireland

It’s surprising how a small country of 4 million people can have an International day of celebration. I am talking about Paddy’s Day, a national holiday celebrated and loved the world over. Given the international reaction to St Patricks Day last week you have to admire how marketing can quickly change perceptions. Just a few months ago we were the poor guys of Europe getting bailed out by the EU and the IMF.  All that is still going on in the background but lets show the world Ireland is still very much open for business.

The last few weeks have seen some very clever marketing techniques put into action at home and abroad. All aimed at promoting Ireland as a tourist destination. The ideas span social, viral, ambient and guerrilla marketing, exactly what this blog was made for.

1. The Land of 1,000 Welcomes


Earlier in March a new initiative was launched to find 1,000 ambassadors for Dublin. People who know the city inside and out, who were passionate about it and and who passed a Garda vetting process. These ambassadors will be available from June 16th to take tourists out for a cup of tea of a pint in one of three Dublin institutions – Bewleys, The Porterhouse or The Merrion Hotel (What do you mean no Starbucks?!). The ambassadors are unpaid volunteers, giving their time. It’s such a good idea some well known Dubliners have also signed up. The celebs include presidential candidate Senator David Norris, Bill Cullen from Irelands The Apprentice and comedian Mario Rosenstock. So the tourists land, we bring them for a drink (paid for by the campaign), make them feel welcome and give them an insiders view of Dublin, a bit of history or maybe local knowledge. You won’t get that anywhere else and it sticks on brand message so well you have to wonder why no one thought of this before. This is the excellent work of one Trevor White. More info here.

2. Ireland Town

Its like Farmville except you build your own small town in Ireland. You can visit important Irish tourist destinations and build up cpoins by carrying out different activities. One of these includes sending postcards from the tourist destinations you visit. These crop up in the newsfeeds of the players friends. There’s more than just gold coins at stake, theres real prizes including a holiday to Ireland. Tourism Ireland have over 250,000 people on their different International pages, they hope 100,000 will play the game and through newsfeed postings and Facebooks viral features they want to reach over 32 million people. Designed and built by Betapond in Waterford, this is one of a number of International tourism apps the firm has built in recent months. Play Ireland Town.

3. St. Patricks Day Afterparty

This was a Guerrilla style campaign promoted in London with hand written posters and unbranded beer mats directing people to the St Patricks Day after party – in Ireland. The point of the campaign was to direct people to online channels – on the Discover Ireland website visitors could win flights to Ireland while clips, like the one below, and others showing Ireland in full swing on March 17th were posted the Discover Ireland Youtube channel.

4. Sydney Irish Dancing Flashmob

In 2010 Tourism Ireland turned the Sydney Opera House all green to celebrate 200 years of the city’s St. Patricks Day celoebrations. In 2011 the venue was booked solid for the week of Patricks Day by the Youtube Symphony Orchestra. So perhaps this explains why a different approach was taken in Sydney this year – with an Irish dancing flashmob. While this might lack the big wow factor of turning the Opera House green for Sydney residents, it has proved to be a bigger wow for the online audience and has already sailed past 500K views in under 5 days. Below it is the Opera House from 2010.

 

5. International Monuments Turned Green for Paddys Day

New Zealand: Sky Tower (Auckland)

 

UAE: Burj Al Arab Hotel (Dubai)

 

South Africa: Table Mountain (Cape Town)

 

England: Angel of The North (Gateshead)

 

Scotland: Nelsons Column (Edinburgh)

 

England: Battersea Power Station (London)

 

England: London Eye

 

France: Moulin Rouge (Paris)

 

USA: Empire State Building (New York)

 

USA: White House Fountain (Washington)

 

USA: Chicago River

 

Lidl: Brilliant Customer Service

I had an amazing customer service experience with Lidl recently that’s certainly worth sharing.

The Backstory

Just before Christmas they advertised an espresso machine for just under 60 euros. After a little bit of research, and I mean a tiny bit because as this thread points out how much of a bargain it is, I said I’d pick up one. So what if I only get six months out of it, it’ll still save me a fortune on take away coffee.

I picked one up and for the first two months it worked perfectly. The coffee was great and I had no problems, well, none a coffee machine could fix.

Then at the start of February it developed a problem. The steamer stopped working, and I was annoyed to say the least. I can get by without coffee, I only drink a cup or two max a day, but when I drink it I do like to enjoy it.

To Bin, Or Not To Bin?

Because it was so cheap I thought to myself, there has to be a catch. I thought customer service would probably be too much hassle to sort it out, involve lengthy expensive phone calls, lots of being put on hold. Etc. We’ve all had those experiences when paying through the nose for items like gas, electricity, phone, cable and broadband. And for a cheap coffee machine I was prepared for the worst customer service experience, multiplied by 10. I was just about to bin it when I thought, sure why not? Lets get onto customer service and see how they get on.

Lidl’s Brilliant Customer Service

How lucky I was that I decided to get onto Lidl customer service.

1. I emailed them and received a reply within 2 minutes. The email suggested that I try a possible solution and if that didn’t work to ring them. They gave me a mobile number.

2. I rang and it went to voicemail, asked me to leave a message as they were probably on another call and they would call me back. I didn’t trust them so rang back later that day. (I bet they would have rung back, but this lack of trust comes from poor CS experiences elsewhere) They took my details and explained I would have to post the machine back to them. They wouldn’t accept goods presented in person, but they would supply a postage paid tag.

3. I received the tag within 2 days.

4. Popped the machine in the post last Monday (Feb 28th)

5. Unpacked a new machine today (Mar 2nd, pictured)

In total it took a couple of weeks, but only because I took my time in ringing them back after the initial problem, and then again I delayed after receiving the tag. In all had I done it in one go, the whole process would have taken 5-6 business days. No hassle, no grief, no waiting. They just sorted the issue.

Lidl, accept my apologies for me thinking you would be like all the others, when really your out on your own when it comes to CS. And while I’m at it, your staff at the till don’t snarl like they do in certain other supermarkets. Full marks for great customer service.