By @SimonCocking. Great interview with Paul Dunphy Esquire who will be speaking at the upcoming Social Media Summit, March 1st/2nd, Dublin.

Brief background about you?

I’ve always worked in Media in one form or another, prior to starting my own business I was Media and Communications Executive with the aid agency Oxfam Ireland for 14 years. Over 2 years ago I took a career break during this time the idea of starting my own social media business came about. At the Social Media summit on day 2 I will tell you the rest of the story!

What inspired you to speak at this event?

It’s going to be fantastic, have you seen the list of speakers including Teb Rubin? WOW. Plus it’s the first of it’s kind. I’m delighted to have been invited to speak at and tell my story. It’s going to be the social media business event of the year!

Why it will be helpful for people to attend. What will they get out of it?

So much! so many interesting and motivational speakers like Kathy Doyle, Jill Holtz, Jack Murry and so many more, plus workshops on how to use Snapchat and Instagram to your best advantage! I expect to come away motivated and with a lots of new contacts and Twitter followers! Plus you can either go for the two days or one day tickets also available.

Why is social media so important for businesses?

It’s free marketing, I can never understand any business that is not using Social Media (and using well!) and the figure is high in Ireland that do not use, however more and more businesses are seeing the light and signing up to all forms of social media. I’m a social media curator and I manage people’s social media for them usually because they do not have the time or the necessary know how. A new account I started this week on Twitter is @opticalShopIre give a follow! based in Blackrock.

Your tips for people looking to do well on social media?

Engage, and then engage some more, be polite, helpful and kind, stay away from negativity it’s so easy to get pulled into it. Give out what you’d like to get back and you will soon find you do. Plus most importantly hire me! I have just added on my webpage free Twitter Do’s and Dont’s, you can download for free on my webpage.

Without naming names what avoidable mistakes have you seen companies make with their social media strategy?

The biggest of all and it’s the ultimate sin in my book is having a Twitter/Facebook account that has not been used in 6 months or more, this is the biggest offence in my book is having a inactive account, you’re better not having any social media presence than having inactive accounts! It’s so bad for business as you will just go to there competitors who are active online! Another is impatience it won’t happen ‘overnight’ you have to put in the work in but if you do you will soon see results.

Running your own business is also tough, how do you manage the work /life, online / offline balance?

The work/life balance is very important to me, I work from home and my dog Mindy is very insistent on regular walks which get’s me up and out! I also cycle every lunchtime around the glorious Phoenix Park (weather permitting) and visit the deer!. Learn to say ‘no’! or at least ‘it will have to wait till tomorrow’ . Exercise is key it’s when I do my planning.

Who has inspired you?

Samantha Kelly, lead organiser of this event and also the lady who helped me start my own social media business, always helpful, encouraging and a great source of positivity and fun! If she wasn’t already hooked up and if I wasn’t gay I would propose! (joke!). She rocks Twitter.

Anything else you’d like to add / we should have asked you?

To find out more about Paul and his social curating work, visit his new webpage which was designed by the very talented Brenda Doran  and you can see Paul on March 2nd when he will be speaking at the Social media summit about his business and how it came about and what has happened along the way! It’s been interesting!

If you would like to have your company featured in the Irish Tech News Business Showcase, get in contact with us at [email protected] or on Twitter: @SimonCocking

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