Over 500 Irish SMEs gathered at The Point Village in Dublin this morning for Boost Your Business, run by Facebook Ireland. At the event, SMEs heard from Facebook’s small and medium business team on industry insights and latest trends. Business owners also participated in workshops to help them grow brand awareness, drive sales and find new customers.
Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Simon Coveney T.D. spoke about Brexit and its potential impact on Irish businesses. Minister for Trade, Employment, Business, EU Digital Single Market and Data Protection Pat Breen T.D., addressed the audience on another challenge facing SMEs next year - the EU's new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) which will take effect in May 2018. The new regulation will increase the obligations and responsibilities for organisations and businesses in how they collect, use and protect personal data.
Furthermore, panellists from Magee of Donegal, Burren Perfumery and Boutique Bake shared their experiences and practical advice on how they have achieved growth and success through Facebook and mobile marketing.
During the event, Director SMB EMEA for Facebook, Olivia Leonard emphasised the critical importance of having a mobile strategy, "Christmas 2016 was the first time we saw global mobile conversions overtake desktop on Facebook, with mobile-first shoppers increasing each year," she said. "As a small or medium business, you need to be available and accessible where people spend the majority of their time and that is on mobile. In Ireland, there are approximately 2.7 million people using Facebook on their mobiles and we want to help businesses reach these potential customers."
She added, "In addition to this, there are 46 million people around the world connected to a business in Ireland on Facebook and expanding into new countries has become easier. We want to help businesses unlock the potential of the global market and understand how tools like international Lookalike Audiences and multi-city targeting can enable them to reach new audiences abroad."