Buymedia in the spotlight at the upcoming National Enterprise Awards

Mayo Business Buymedia in the spotlight at the upcoming National Enterprise Awards 2018

Buymedia was founded in September 2015 with the simple aim of helping businesses get the best advertising options for their specific needs. The founder, Fergal O’Connor has over 25 years of experience in the advertising and media business. He set up Buymedia when he realised that the majority of small and medium enterprises were struggling with advertising planning, purchasing, managing and monitoring. It was very evident that businesses needed help and Buymedia was born to help businesses get a better return on their advertising.

Buymedia recently won the Local Enterprise Awards during Local Enterprise Week, which ran from the 5th to the 9th of March. This quickly expanding company will now represent Mayo at the next stage of this competition, the National Enterprise Awards, which is due to take place on May 24th at the Mansion House in Dublin.
Fergal O’Connor and John Magee, Head of Enterprise at Local Enterprise Office Mayo, took some time out in advance of the awards ceremony to talk about the journey Buymedia has been on so far and any advice that both of them may have for any aspiring entrepreneurs thinking of setting up a business in Mayo.

Fergal, what exactly does Buymedia do?

"Success in business is measured in small percentages and if businesses can identify several areas where they can make small improvements it will have a huge effect on their overall bottom line. Buymedia focuses on making small improvements in each of the 18 steps in the advertising, planning and implementation process.

The technology that Buymedia has built uses Artificial Intelligence, Market Intelligence, Automation and Predictive Analytics to give the best recommendations for individual business needs based on their advertising requirements. Buymedia has evolved the advertising process to make it easier for businesses to manage their advertising campaigns across all media – traditional and digital."

What was the defining moment for Buymedia in the initial start-up stage?

"In the start up eco-system, there are numerous businesses who can spend years in a phase called pre-revenue i.e they are not generating any revenue. I have always believed that success of a business is defined by it’s ability to have clients that are willing to pay for your product or service. In my opinion our defining moment was when we were able to show clients that we could add enough value to their business that they are willing to pay for it."

What’s next on the business agenda for your company?

"We have recently taken over a number of high profile clients on both the advertising and media side. Our aim for 2018 is to help 40 to 50 businesses manage an advertising budget of between €50-€100K per annum and get them a better return on their advertising budget. We are looking beyond Ireland also with client interest in the UK, Australia, US and South America."

You can been recently announced as the Mayo finalist at the National Enterprise Awards 2018. What does this mean for you as an entrepreneur and for the business on the 20th year of the competition?

"It is a huge honour to be selected from all the great businesses in Mayo to represent the county at the National Enterprise Awards 2018. The fact that it is the twentieth anniversary makes it even more special and we hope that we can raise the profile of our business and the innovative businesses in the county both nationally and internationally."

John, what exactly is the National Enterprise Awards?

"The National Enterprise Awards, now in its 20th year this year, is organised by the national network of Local Enterprise Offices and celebrates the achievements of Ireland’s micro-enterprise sector. The awards recognises and promotes the success stories of small business owners from all over the country. The ceremony is due to take place on May 24th in the Mansion House in Dublin and we are thrilled to have Fergal O’Connor of Buymedia represent Mayo at the National Final.

Mayo has been very successful over the years at this national competition, with Agrispread, based in Ballyhaunis, having won the overall title in 2011; Donal Byrne of Big Red Barn, now based in Swinford, winning the Best Regional Business award in 2016 and most recently Monaghan Bros Bar Furniture, based in Mayo Abbey, winning the Best Exporter award in 2017. All strong businesses exporting internationally from their headquarters in Mayo, showing that Mayo is the place to grow and scale world class businesses. Assisting and supporting such businesses is a key goal of Local Enterprise Office Mayo."

Fergal, have you found Mayo a supportive environment in which to grow your business?

"I would recommend any person considering starting a business or even at business idea stage to make their local LEO office their first call. I can honestly say that without the support of LEO Mayo, we would have struggled to get the business start and would have found it impossible to progress at the pace we did."

Lastly, Fergal, do you have any advice for somebody considering starting up a business?

-          Surround yourself with a support network of advisors. The entrepreneurs journey can be lonely and you’ll need support.

-          Try to get into business accelerator programmes as it will help progress your business and make relevant business contacts.

-          Sell, sell, sell! – it is never too early to engage with clients. Even if you have nothing to sell, these early conversations with potential clients can   lay the foundation of future client relationships.

John, what would be your advice be for a business start-up?

"Basically, come and talk to us. Local Enterprise Office Mayo serves as a “first stop shop”, providing entrepreneurs in Mayo with advice on starting and growing a small business, high-quality business training and financial support.

You can call us on 094 9047555 or email if you would like to talk further about your business or business idea."