The hosts of a new marketing podcast are leading an initiative to help support local businesses ahead of the Christmas period.
The Social Antics Podcast was recently created by marketing manager David Doyle and UCC Business School lecturer Dave Alton who discuss different areas of business and all things marketing during Covid-19.
In light of the Level 5 restrictions which have been in place for almost two weeks, both Mr Doyle and Mr Alton came up with a new social media challenge in order to support local businesses.
The #GiftLocal challenge asks people to support a local retailer by buying a product or an online voucher, to gift the product or voucher to a family member or friend, to share it on social media using #GiftLocal and tag three friends in the post to spread awareness and help more businesses.
Speaking about the new challenge, Mr Doyle said that the duo’s involvement in many local businesses made them want to come up with something to help promote those local businesses that have had to shut their doors for the second time in seven months since the onset of Covid-19.
“We brainstormed a few ideas and because there has been lots of support for Irish businesses initiatives, we changed it a little bit to the idea of giving someone a product or voucher as a nice way of doing it so that was where the gift idea came from.
“A lot of these challenges run stale after a few days but we’re going to try and push it as much as we can and by asking people to tag three friends we’re hoping, similar to the ice bucket challenge, that other people will get involved,” he said.
Mr Doyle said that it has been “great to see how businesses have been so creative over the last few months during really hard times” and hopes that the challenge will see them supported over the coming months.
He said that businesses who have transformed their offering, be it physically or by putting their business online, “should not be forgotten about while their doors are closed”.
“It’s great to see businesses being so creative and putting back on their entrepreneurial hat that started the business in the first place to see what their gap in the market is and where they can fill it.
“We’re coming into a time when many businesses would usually be making most of their cash flow so it is quite a difficult time to have the doors closed so that's why we wanted to give a little bit of help and a bit of a push,” he said.