Five com­pa­nies join forces

Wicklow People - - NEWS -

THE for­ma­tion of MSS Group was an­nounced this week as five com­pa­nies, all in­volved in mar­ket­ing re­lated fields, have come to­gether to of­fer a unique, sin­gle, all-in­clu­sive ser­vice for clients.

MSS Group has brought in­dus­try ex­perts to­gether, of­fer­ing mar­ket­ing and de­sign, PR and event man­age­ment, dig­i­tal com­mu­ni­ca­tions, cri­sis man­age­ment, me­dia train­ing, stake­holder en­gage­ment, even spe­cial­ist en­vi­ron­men­tal com­mu­ni­ca­tions - all un­der one roof.

Aughrim man Tim Ivers is head­ing up the Mar­ket­ing & De­sign arm of the new ven­ture.

‘Pre­vi­ously our clients were us­ing three or four agen­cies, each com­pet­ing for their own slice of the mar­ket­ing bud­get. Our clients now brief one agency, get­ting a stronger, cost ef­fec­tive mar­ket­ing of­fer­ing. We ad­vise our clients on the best way to get their com­pany or product mes­sage to their tar­get au­di­ence. We are ag­nos­tic in what type of ser­vice we ad­vise, in that we don’t just push mar­ket­ing, dig­i­tal, PR or events – we ad­vise our clients on what is the best for their busi­ness - not ours,’ he says.

In charge of PR is Kieran O’Byrne from Grey­stones who spe­cialises in en­vi­ron­men­tal com­mu­ni­ca­tions and stake­holder en­gage­ment.

‘Our di­rec­tors each have more than 20 years of ex­pe­ri­ence in their fields,’ he says. ‘We work with client com­pa­nies across di­verse busi­ness sec­tors, each of which is of­fered a ser­vice struc­tured to en­able them do bet­ter busi­ness. We fo­cus on strate­gic, tar­geted mes­sag­ing for our clients across brand, mar­ket­ing, PR and dig­i­tal com­mu­ni­ca­tions, aimed firmly at what they want to achieve,’ Mr O’Byrne adds.

MSS Group Di­rec­tors all have in­dus­try ex­pe­ri­ence across global clients and brands as well as SME and Ir­ish in­dige­nous com­pa­nies. HO­TELS and guest­houses in Wick­low and across the coun­try ex­pe­ri­enced an in­crease in busi­ness dur­ing the first six months of the year.

CSO fig­ures show that over­seas vis­i­tors rose by over 3 per cent, while the do­mes­tic mar­ket also in­creased, with 71 per cent of hote­liers say­ing busi­ness lev­els up un­til the end of May were up com­pared to the same pe­riod last year.

How­ever, Brian McNa­mara, Chair of the Wick­low Branch of the Ir­ish Ho­tels Fed­er­a­tion, warns that Brexit is al­ready im­pact­ing on tourism per­for­mance and could con­tinue to have an af­fect.

He said: ‘vis­i­tor num­bers are up, which is good news and the growth in do­mes­tic tourism is par­tic­u­larly en­cour­ag­ing as it ex­tends be­yond the tra­di­tional tourism hot spots and its im­pact on lo­cal economies can be felt more widely. How­ever, the lat­est CSO fig­ures show a con­tin­ued fall in UK vis­i­tors, our big­gest mar­ket na­tion­ally, which il­lus­trates the fragility of the tourism re­cov­ery in Wick­low.

‘Many of the con­se­quences of Brexit are largely out­side our con­trol, so it is im­per­a­tive that we mit­i­gate the risks and po­ten­tial dam­age where we do have some con­trol over our des­tiny. Con­tin­ued growth re­mains a pri­or­ity for the sec­tor, which is the coun­try’s largest in­dige­nous em­ployer. It is achiev­able but it re­quires spe­cific ac­tions.

‘Ire­land’s com­pet­i­tive tourism of­fer­ing will cer­tainly help and this is un­der­pinned by im­por­tant mea­sures as the zero rate travel tax and the 9 per cent tourism VAT rate which brings us into line with other coun­tries in Europe.’

Mr McNa­mara, Gen­eral Man­ager of the Glen­view Ho­tel, also be­lieves that it is es­sen­tial that fur­ther in­vest­ment in product de­vel­op­ment and mar­ket­ing con­tin­ues to take place.

‘Enor­mous strides have al­ready been made in the de­vel­op­ment of our prod­ucts and brands in­clud­ing Ire­land’s An­cient East and ‘Dublin – A Breath of Fresh Air’, for ex­am­ple. How­ever, the re­cov­ery has not been felt to the same ex­tent through­out the county.

‘The UK mar­ket in par­tic­u­lar pro­vides the widest spread of vis­i­tors across Ire­land and the broad­est sea­son­al­ity. Nine out of ten (91 per cent) hote­liers na­tion­ally be­lieve more needs to be done in terms of re­gional mar­ket­ing in par­tic­u­lar. Time and time again, Ir­ish tourism has shown it­self to be an ex­cel­lent in­vest­ment with ev­ery euro spent in des­ti­na­tion mar­ket­ing by the state re­sult­ing in €34 be­ing spent by vis­i­tors in the coun­try.’

Tim Ivers, Trich Kearns and Kieran O’Byrne, MSS Group.

Brian McNa­mara, Chair

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