Since this business is state funded, there is a cap on how many employees they can hire. The cap on employees forces current employees to be responsible for multiple duties outside of their job description. For example, the Marketing team is responsible for the research and analytics of the several different Failte Ireland domestic tourism campaigns, but since they no longer outsource their PR and social media management to a 3rd party they must oversee PR and Social media. For employees, here a full work week is 37 hours with an hour and 15 minutes for lunch. Surprisingly most of the employees take about 15-30 minute breaks, if they take one at all. My shadowing couldn’t have come at a better time for Faitle Ireland because many of the employees are leaving for their summer holiday including Shaunna, the current Marketing team member that overtook social media management. Gemma my superior, assigned me to social media management in her absence. They were interested in seeing my perspective on their social media posts and introduce them to new SM trends that other travel businesses may be doing that they are not. Gemma provided me with several informational brochures, PowerPoints and PR plans for Fáilte and I could begin.
Fáitle Ireland is a 3-story building on Amiens St. and our offices are located on the second floor. My cubicle was located near the middle of the room with the rest of the Marketing department. I was provided with everything I needed to work productively i.e notepads, pens, highlighters and access to the printer. I started my first project by researching other national tourism businesses that pose a competitive threat to Ireland. The countries I researched included France, Spain, Germany and London. The only clear difference between Fáilte Ireland and these social media sites was their interaction with the followers. France, Spain, Germany and London had built a noticeable relationship with their followers on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. I noted social media post that triggered followers to use hashtags, repost or comment back to the tourism social media page. The biggest trend offered followers a chance to win tickets or dinners at popular venues around the city. Another popular trend was asking the followers to post their best selfie in front of specific areas and tagging the photo. After I gathered my data I had a meeting with Gemma and Mary, the Head of Marketing to share my findings and share my suggestions. Mary was impressed with my work and asked me to edit their social media calendar for the Wild Atlantic Way’s (WAW) Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. WAW has a running social media calendar with preplanned post for the rest of the year. I realized after reviewing their calendar that it was too domestically focused. The posts did include exceptional sites to visit, activities and upcoming festivals, but they neglected international and social media days. For example, gay pride was this July and every other country had made a post about the day or LGBTQ events available during the month. The other countries also acknowledge What I call social media days, like #selfieday and #penguinday. I was sure to provide the team with a list of upcoming holidays that would make their social media less robotic and more organic. I also suggested that they utilize more videos, hashtags and tags through out their social media posts. This project was an incredible opportunity for me to put my experience with social media management to the test. I’ve added several future tweets and post to the WAW social media calendar and I can’t wait to see the interaction from their followers.