DÚN LAOGHAIRE

1 days / 12 talks
Thought Leaders & Digital Innovators

8th June 2017, Pavilion Theatre
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“The Twin Tech Earthquakes of 2016”

The quickly-shifting digital landscape can seem intimidating, but Alan Coleman, CEO of Wolfgang Digital, takes a glass-half-full approach. “The digital marketing industry is one of the fastest moving industries and most exciting industries in the world,” he says. “This means every day is different and there are always new opportunities for business growth.”

Focusing on the future, Coleman’s presentation “The Twin Tech Earthquakes of 2016” will examine how the digital sphere is evolving in order to explore the ways in which businesses can best take advantage of major movements in the tech industry. “We’ve a really interesting talk lined up on the two seismic tech events of 2016 and what they mean for our work and lives going forward.”

Attendees will head home prepared to grow their business through the next stages of digital evolution. “We’ll detail the fundamental strategic shift every company needs to make,” Coleman says.

Coleman points to Littlewoods Ireland as an example of excellent digital transformation on the part of an Irish company. “They have migrated from a catalogue-only retailer to an online-only retailer in recent years. They killed the catalogue and have seen phenomenal business growth, leading to them picking up awards in Ireland, the UK, Europe, and the US for their efforts.”

Alan Coleman will be presenting “The Twin Tech Earthquakes of 2016” at DLR Summit, 8 June 2017, at the Pavilion Theatre in Dún Laoghaire.

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‘Digital Transformation–An Imperative for Irish Business’

Aisling Curtis is the expert when it comes to working in an ever-evolving business landscape. The Commercial Director for Small, Medium Corporate Solutions at Microsoft Ireland sees her role as “creating the right environment for my customers, partners, and teams to be successful.”

In addition to sitting on the Senior Leadership team at Microsoft Ireland, Curtis is a member of the IMI Council and Women’s Inspire. Her career in technology has allowed her many opportunities to both mentor and be a mentee. Curtis’s background is a global as well as an Irish one: she has sat on boards in Ireland, the UK, the Netherlands, and South Africa.

Curtis began her career in the financial sector, gaining some work experience before going to university. “I was always interested in technology, which led me to enjoy an exciting international career in Telecommunications with both Irish and global opportunities,” she says. Curtis has experience in leading business, consumer, strategic, and operational teams across both emerging and mature markets. Her involvement in multiple channels across multiple markets has made her a leader in gauging business environments.

Looking forward, Curtis predicts digital as crucial to business success, as the title of her presentation, ‘Digital Transformation–An Imperative for Irish Business’, exemplifies. “We believe Irish businesses must successfully transform their business model in the next two years or risk losing out,” she warns.

“Irish organisations could tap into a $100 trillion market through successful Digital Transformation of their business models by 2020,” she says. This success is dependent on more than simply utilizing emerging digital technologies, however. Curtis advises businesses that are looking to digitally transform implement an all-encompassing digital strategy.

“Digital transformation is not just about the technology alone. It is about fundamental change to business models and processes.” She points to companies such as Laya, IMRO, and Thyssen Krupps as key examples of businesses successfully implementing digital transformation.

Aisling Curtis will be presenting “Digital Transformation–An Imperative for Irish Business” at DLR Summit, 8 June 2017, at the Pavilion Theatre in Dún Laoghaire.

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‘How to Digitally Transform and Advance Your Business by Collaboration with Irish Research Partners’

Dr. Chris Horn, co-founder, CEO, and chairman of IONA Technologies, is the industry expert on Irish technology development, trends, and business. As an honorary Doctor of Science from Trinity College Dublin and former TCD lecturer in computer science, Dr. Horn is at the forefront of the Irish high-tech debate. His career has been marked by positions that speak to both his interest in the digital revolution as well as a passion for digital development in Ireland.

Dr. Horn holds a degree in Electronic Engineering, as well as a PhD in Computer Science, from Trinity College Dublin. Dr. Horn co-founded the NASDAQ listed IONA Technologies, listed at one time as one of the top ten software companies in the world by revenue.

In addition to his dedicated work with IONA Technologies, Dr. Horn is a noted thought-leader in the Irish digital sphere. With regular opinion contributions to The Irish Times and chairmanships across a number of organizations, including the Irish Management Institute, UNICEF Ireland, the Irish Brain Research Foundation, and The Science Gallery, he continues to work towards an Ireland that is at the cutting edge of global tech development.

Currently, Dr. Horn maintains a partner position of Atlantic Bridge, which parents the University Bridge Fund, an investment organization with funding of €60 million. The University Bridge Fund is dedicated to developing companies “built from research generated at all Irish universities and third level institutions.”

Dr. Horn will present “How to Digitally Transform and Advance Your Business by Collaboration with Irish Research Partners.” Using specific examples of interesting research, all of which is currently being undertaken by the Irish university system and receiving funding, Dr. Horn will explore how this research can disrupt or transform specific business markets. Specifically, Dr. Horn will examine blockchain, data mining and insights, AI interface, and natural language understanding as digital trends with the power to transform the digital landscape in coming years.

Read about Dr. Horn’s latest projects on his recent profile by Irish Tech News.

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‘The Future of Marketing is Traditional and Visual’

Niall Hanlon is no stranger to the power of digital. The Facebook Client Solutions Manager for Retail has been involved in the industry for the past 6 years, working on direct response advertising solutions. Following graduation from Dublin City University with an MSc in E-commerce, Hanlon began his career with the National Digital Research Center in Dublin before moving on to a three-and-a-half-year long journey with Yahoo in Dublin and New York. Since early 2016, Hanlon has been with Facebook in Dublin.

With his extensive background in digital, Hanlon is an authority on moving operations online. “There are many companies all over the world that have successfully implemented digital transformation across all sectors from banking to retail. The list is endless!”

“I work on the omnichannel retail vertical working with the UK’s biggest retailers,” Hanlon says. His work involves making sure advertisers on Facebook make the most out of the company’s best in class advertising solutions.

Hanlon will share his insider information on how these advertising solutions can bolster a business’s marketing campaign at the DLR Summit.

“I would like to highlight how Facebook has developed in the past number of years and how mobile and video are focal points across the Facebook family of apps,” he says. He hopes audiences will head back to the office understanding “Facebook as a medium for delivering great advertising experiences.”

Hanlon will bring examples of the high-standard level of work that can be achieved with Facebook solutions. In addition to taking home inspiration from these examples, Hanlon believes audiences will be able to begin “how to think about planning campaigns for Facebook.”

Niall Hanlon will be presenting “The Future of Marketing is Traditional and Visual” at DLR Summit, 8 June 2017, at the Pavilion Theatre in Dún Laoghaire.

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‘Creating and Using Great Content to Grow an International Business’

Director of Strategic Partnerships for the Digital Marketing Institute, Michael Goeden, is the expert in utilizing digital content for growth. With licensed partners and distributors in over 100 countries and a count of more than 18,000 professionals holding DMI certification, Goeden’s claim to digital marketing expert is one that can’t be argued with. Over the past 8 years, DMI has developed into the “dominant digital marketing and digital selling professional certification body.”

“I have a particular focus on developing large, multinational distribution channels and contributing to the strategic development of the business as a whole,” Goeden says of his role at DMI. Goeden’s presentation at the DLR Summit, “Creating and Using Great Content to Grow an International Business,” will draw from his experience in growing DMI into a highly successful, global organization.

Establishing DMI as an industry authority in the digital marketing, education, and training spheres has all come down to content, according to Goeden. From an office space in Dún Laoghaire “creating and using great content and the right messaging, having a solid plan and being consistent has led to success and continued growth on a global scale,” he says.

Goeden lists IBM and Oracle as two organizations he believes are at the top of their game in implementing digital transformation.

Goeden’s presentation will share key principles of creating and distributing useful content that can position your business in the right way. His back-up examples and stats will exemplify how curating effective content has sparked success for many businesses.

Additionally, Goeden wants to stress the importance of collective effort in content creation. “I want participants to leave feeling that there are things they can do routinely as an individual, a team and as an organization that will build brand awareness, drive inbound leads, and stimulate relationships.” Goeden will provide “plans for people to consider implementing when they are back at the office”, a promising beginning for anyone interested in developing effective content for their digital marketing strategy.

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Improve Reach and Generate Engagement with Easy Analytics

If you’ve ever come up with a great idea for an Instagram post for your business or updated your organization’s Facebook feed, you know online marketing is an effective and cost-efficient way of reaching consumers. However, if you aren’t taking the time to read the numbers, you may not be getting the most out of your digital marketing strategy. Utilizing data and analytics tools is a must if you want to make the greatest online impact possible.

With so many analytics tools and applications out there, approaching data interpretation can be intimidating. What do the numbers mean? What is the most effective method of digitally marketing your product? Which platform works best for your business?

This list will help you sift through the junk and find the easiest, most effective data and analytics tools for your business. Read on to find out how you can use data to measure your marketing campaigns and increase reach and revenue!

Google Analytics

One of the best known data analysis tools is Google Analytics. This application provides you with important information about how well your website is performing, both in general and in regards to specific elements on the site. It measures customer interaction, demographic information about your audience, and which aspects of your website are the most frequently visited.

Google Analytics is helpful in determining where your customers are coming from and why they’re visiting your site. If you feel confused or overwhelmed by the interface at first, you aren’t alone. However, Google are constantly updating and improving the Google Analytics user interface, working towards a platform that provides comprehensive information on an easy-to-navigate interface.

Clicky Web Analytics

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If you’re looking for a more user-friendly Google Analytics, try Clicky Web Analytics. The site provides real-time audience analysis. With Clicky, you can monitor users surfing your website while they’re on the site. Additionally, you can access individualized user reports and visitation history. On-site heatmaps make it easy to monitor which elements of your content are the most popular.

Buffer

Is your marketing strategy focused more on social media platforms than on websites? Consider installing Buffer, a wonderful tool that analyzes social media engagement and impact. Buffer’s free plan provides data about social media platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. For a busy schedule, take advantage of Buffer’s scheduling software, which allows you either to publish your own schedule or leave it up to the program to publish at times when your content is likely to make the biggest impact.

Are you truly engaging with consumers through social media, or could your strategy use an upgrade? Buffer’s statistics reads will make it easy to determine if you are reaching your social media marketing objectives.

Cyfe

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There’s a reason Cyfe has been consistently named one the top most useful applications for data analytics. Its business-focused, user-friendly dashboard configures data from across a multitude of sources. By drawing information from places like social media as well as websites, Cyfe provides an in-depth analysis of online impact with a large scope. Cyfe allows you to monitor all of your data in one place. The dashboard feature makes it easy to look at your digital marketing strategy as a whole, or focus on specific aspects, such as social media platforms or finance.

Facebook Audience Insights

Increase your reach by implementing targeted social media campaigns with Facebook Audience Insights. Audience Insights helps you determine how effective your Facebook content is. By using demographic data, Audience Insights allows you to develop content that is specifically targeted based on interests, occupations, locations, or ages of your audience. This platform ensures you have a cutting edge in consumer engagement by enabling you to break down your competitors’ audiences through interest-based data.

Crunching numbers is necessary when developing an online marketing strategy. With so many free tools and programs available, it’s easy to make the most of your online presence and ensure your business is a success.

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A version of this article can be found on the 3XE Digital Conference blog.


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Online Retail Booming for Irish E-Commerce

From  Laura Slattery for the Irish Times on May 4, shopping in Ireland continues to move off high-street to online. According to a recent study by Wolfgang Digital, Irish e-commerce revenue grew by 45 percent in 2016, marking major growth for the second consecutive year.

Wolfgang Digital notes that this online growth translates into a rate at nine times the rate of Ireland’s gross domestic product. Chief executive Alan Coleman said that Ireland can “expect this rampant growth to continue” in years to come.

According to Coleman, online spending accounts for 6 percent of the Irish economy, where in “the advanced UK market, online’s share of spend is as high as 16 per cent.”

This recent report studied a sampling of Irish retail and travel companies. The organizations surveyed had combined earnings of nearly €300 million for the year 2016.

Retailers cited a revenue growth of 24 percent. As for Irish travel sites, Wolfgang determined these businesses had a “whopping” 79 percent swell in earnings. These sites also boasted a 15 percent rise in average transaction value, in addition to an improved rate for converting visitor traffic into revenue-earning transactions, likely due to a recent tourism boom in the country.

Holiday Holdings

Shoppers took to the Internet for the yearly Christmas shop, figures from the fourth quarter suggest. As transaction growth exceeded revenue growth, the study indicates that online retailers offered customers online discounts, which were readily taken advantage of by holiday shoppers.

Cutting-edge advertisement formats such as “conversion-focused” strategies earned retailers who adopted these formats early-on higher revenues. Google Shopper ranked as the top-performing revenue-driver for companies included in the study. The format, which promotes search results from various retail sites in response to keywords, was only launched in Ireland in 2016’s fourth quarter.

Online Shopping Credit

Wolfgang cited smartphones as the primary mode of shopping online. The devices accounted for 45 percent of online traffic, with desktop browsers holding 42 percent of traffic, and 13 percent generating from tablet devices.

Coleman wasn’t surprised by these results, despite this being the first Wolfgang study to find mobile traffic outpacing desktop.

Brexit

Wolfgang Digital found that the portion of revenue for retail sites originating from outside of Ireland cooled from 36 percent in 2015 to 19 percent. The study cites this trend as a result of the weakening of the pound in comparison to the euro.

However, Coleman said Brexit offers Irish e-commerce retailers an opportunity in regards to the European market. Not only is competition in the UK is “floating further and further away from the valuable European market,” but also “the EU’s drive to enhance the Digital Single Market” make the European market a prime target for Irish e-retailers.

Alan Coleman is the CEO and founder of Wolfgang Digital. He will be speaking at the DLR Summit on 8 June 2017. 

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Digital Transformation in Irish Business ‘Struggling’ to Meet the Challenge

John Holden reports in today’s (4th May 2017) Irish Times, that “struggling” is the term most associated with Irish Businesses when it comes to Digital Transformation, according to the recently-released 2017 KingramRed Digital Transformation Report. Surveying a multitude of Irish business sectors, the report found senior-level staff are “not developing a vision of their digital future.” Further, “leadership capabilities and awareness are not sufficiently developed in this area to drive direction and mitigate risks.” 

Of the organizations included in the report, less than half had developed a set strategy for future digital improvement in order to stay competitive in a digital landscape. A mere 53 percent of businesses surveyed acknowledged an immediate necessity to establish a digital strategy. 

Autopilot: Digital Leadership

A majority of those surveyed felt the move to digital lay below upper-level management and executives, believing it was the responsibility of IT departments, instead. Out of the participants at management and senior-levels, 60 percent stated that digital transformation was not a crucial issue for CEOs. 

This neglect of senior-level employees in leading digital transformation has caused preparation efforts to become “dissipated in silos across organizations.”

Adoption Agents: Implementing Digital in Irish Business

Irish sectors including finance, analytics, and agriculture were included in this second report by the KingramRed digital consultancy firm. The survey considered businesses’ engagement with developing technologies, such as analytics, AI, smart devices, and robotics. 

Out of organizations surveyed, 65 percent were already engaged with technologies such as algorithms and data analytics, with a “further 20 percent expecting to take advantage within two years.”

Alternatively, robotics proved to be a technology that Irish businesses have been hesitant to adopt. Only “30 per cent of organisations” are currently examining how to implement robotic solutions in their business or considering adopting robotics.

Digital Transformation Screens

This lack of advancement in digital transformation could be boiled down to one major agreement in the report. A strong majority felt there is a current “shortage of skills and resources,” making it difficult to implement a digital transformation strategy. Although 72 percent of participants are funding digital in their businesses, only half of business are confident in their digital resources, claiming that their organizations have the skills necessary to implement digital action plans. 

Overall, the report claimed that “the shortage of resources and skills is a serious challenge to driving forward with change.”

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‘Digital Strategy for Business’

Speaker Hugh O’Byrne, VP Digital Sales for IBM, will be presenting “Digital Strategy for Business”. O’Byrne has an extensive background in the digital world. With over thirty years of experience, O’Byrne began programming as business use in computers was expanding from large corporations to medium-sized businesses.

“Everything had to be built, such as payroll,” O’Byrne says. “It was exciting as there was so much which needed to be done–very little existed.”

Currently, O’Byrne is responsible for digital sales at the $80 billion technology company, IBM. He created the largest digital sales center in Dublin for IBM globally, a project that employs 800 people in Dublin and another 120 in Bratislava, Slovakia.

O’Byrne’s presentation will cover digital strategy in business. “All business to business research is done online and companies often make choices about who to choose without ever talking to a vendor,” O’Byrne says. He hopes to highlight the importance of digital in business today. He advises businesses to not ignore the digital world. “It’s here to stay and how business will be increasingly done. You need to engage appropriately, choose some basic strategies and stick with them.”

Companies that engage with the Internet can be categorised in two ways, O’Byrne says: those which have grown up with the Internet and have always used it in business and those which are now applying it to their business models. “Whichever company you are–digital is a key element of your digital strategy going forward.” In his presentation, O’Byrne will exemplify how businesses can incorporate digital strategy into their models with an Irish company that uses digital in their business daily.

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In the thirteen years since it’s launch, Facebook has become an integral part of our everyday lives. We’ve been refreshing our Twitter feeds for eleven years, and in the five years since its inauguration, Instagram has rapidly developed from a place to share snapshots of lunch to a leading source for brand development.

The powerful pull of social media goes beyond a means of staying connected. These platforms are excellent points for consumer engagement and product endorsements.

If you’re looking to upgrade your marketing plan through social media or boost user engagement across Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook, here are the five key points you need to know.

#1 The Numbers

It can be difficult to see the big picture when you’re only using Twitter to retweet your favorite song lyrics. The stats below illustrate how widespread social media usage is!

  • How many people use Facebook each month? 1.28 billion, or the population of the world’s second most-populated country, India.
  • 44% of Twitter accounts go unused; nearly half of all accounts are tweet-less!
  • Each second Linked.in gets two new users.
  • More than latte art: Instagram has a per-follower engagement rate that exceeds Facebook’s by 50 times and crushes Twitter’s (120 times higher).
  • Pinterest boasts upwards of 400% more revenue per click than Twitter and 27% more per click than Facebook

#2: Social Media and Your Competitors 

When everyone from your co-workers to your mother-in-law are your Facebook friends, you know it’s imperative for your company to be active on social media. While the thought of surviving online alongside your competitors might be intimidating, there is an upside. Today’s analytics programs make it easy to track your competitors correctly. You can determine how they use social media and then figure how you compete.

Prior to Web 2.0, organizations would have to shell out huge amounts to get access to the details of their competitors. Now, that information is easily accessible and free with social media.

 

Take these tips to heart to compete effectively in the social media sphere:

  • Click the blue button: follow your competitors.
  • Track the content they’re generating. What types of details, products, or business aspects are they highlighting? Do they use graphics or copy-based content? How do they engage with customers?
  • Use Facebook Pages to Watch. Create a list of pages and Facebook will monitor their statistics for you!
  • Take advantage of Twitter Lists. Like Facebook Pages to Watch, prioritize certain profiles and keep track of your competitors’ tweets.
  • Check out Google+, Facebook Pages, and Yelp Reviews. See what customers have to say. What is working? What could they improve on? Compare your findings with your own strategies.

#3: Content is Key

Social media is all-over, all the time. Customers can get weary of the onslaught of articles, pictures, and media. Don’t let your content get scrolled past. Make sure your content is engaging, authentic, and attention-catching. Developing quality, relevant content is crucial.

#4: Keep up-to-date with the latest social media networks

While you’re developing strategies to implement across Facebook and Twitter, don’t let that distract you from the numerous new social media platforms that are popping up constantly. Engagement with consumers through platforms like Instagram, Pinterest, or Snapchat puts your business at the forefront of social media marketing.

As we move forward, video content is quickly moving into the limelight of social media strategy. Likewise, live-streaming promises to be a fixture that turns social media marketing to a real-time affair. Brands use platforms like Snapchat and Instagram to develop brand narratives that are engaging, exciting, and current.

Visual platforms incite consumer involvement. Your visual content must be enticing and interactive, inspiring shares, likes, and comments.

#5: Engage, analyze, activate with free applications

There are a wide-range of tools that can help you monitor content reception, engage consumers, and crunch the numbers produced by social media platforms. Luckily, many of these tools are free! Learn how to work with these applications to reach wider audiences and develop a better sense of your target audience.

  • Hootsuite

Hootsuite is one of the most popular tools available. The application allows you to track social media posts across multiple channels, analyze reception, and schedule tweets, Facebook posts, and Instagram photos.

  • Buffer

Buffer monitors engagement and activity data on each of your posts. This level of tracking allows you to schedule your posts for a time when they will give you the most exposure.

  • Followerwonk

Followerwonk gives you detailed insight into how your Twitter followers operate. Search for a username and find in-depth information on when your followers are likely to be online and what time they generally post. Plus, Followerwonk categorizes followers into specific categories, such as activity, follower count, or social authority, to help you better target content.

  • Viralwoot

A Pinterest-exclusive tool, Viralwoot helps you schedule and promote pins, helping you to gain new followers along the way.

These tools make it easy to plan social media campaigns. Additionally, they equip you with the data you need to target content, schedule posts at the best times, and better develop your social media strategy.

A version of this article can be found at the 3XE Digital Conference blog.

 

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