Pittman Traffic and Safety Solutions with the Ecommerce award at the County Kildare Business Awards 2018

Pittman Traffic and Safety Solutions win the Ecommerce Award sponsored by Graphedia at the County Kildare Business Awards 2018

Over 360 business leaders from across Kildare attended the Kildare Business Awards Gala Ball in association with Kildare County Council and LEO Kildare on Friday night in The K Club.

3 finalists were shortlisted for the award on the night

  • Pop Up Races,
  • Car On
  • Pittman Traffic and Safety Solutions

Pittman Traffic and Safety Solutions won it on the night

The MC on the Night was Keith Barry and had some fun with Owners Niall & Sarah before announcing the award, have a look at pics below

 

Santas MAgical Trail 2018 Launch, Niall from Graphedia, dressed up as an elf with the team from Clanard Court hotel

The Award Winning Santas Magical Trail website is now live.  Now in its 10th year the website is a more robust reliable system, that can deliver and perform, meeting customers expectations.  (Santas Magical Trail 2018 Launch, Niall from Graphedia, dressed up as an elf with the team from Clanard Court Hotel promoting the Sleep over part of the experience)

Santa’s Magical Trail – a fun filled and action-packed experience for children young and old!

The new ECommerce Website was designed and developed by Graphedia Kildare, the new cusotm buile Event Booking Software / System integrated with WordpPress backend has a host of custom built features to help people book the event and hotel rooms online.  The success of the site meant that dates with hotel rooms were sold out within hours.

Visit the new website here https://www.santasmagicaltrail.ie/

Full details of the website development can be read here https://www.graphedia.ie/website-design-kildare-wexford-portfolio/santas-magical-trail-booking-engine/

Santas Magical Trail won the Ecommerce Award at the County Kildare Chamber Business Awards in 2017 https://www.graphedia.ie/santas-magical-trail-wins-top-ecommerce-award/

We are hiring a Web Developer

Graphedia is a superlative Digital Design Agency delivering cutting edge design in web design, eCommerce, SEO, AdWords, Logo Design, Brochure Design, App Development & Digital Animation Services.  About Us

We are fun forward looking company, looking to recruit a creative web developer (nerd) to join our expanding team of nerds working with our senior programmer and designer here in our fortress of solitude. This is an excellent opportunity to join a fast paced, creative work environment.

Roles & Responsibilities:

  • Website development, content publishing.
  • Website management queries from clients and team members. Debug complex issues and bugs using debugging tools
  • Conduct code reviews to maintain a clean and consistent code
  • Collaborate with colleagues from Design, Marketing & Development
  • Liaise with team members, clients, and 3rd party service providers
  • Provide support to the digital team.
  • Liaise directly with clients to ensure their web requirements are managed.

Key requirements:

  • Proficient in PHP, WordPress theme and plugin development, JavaScript / jQuery, MySql.
  • Experienced in developing for CMS systems (WordPress).
  • Able to work both alone and as part of an awesome team.
  • Knowledge of WordPress installation, configuration, administration security and optimisation.
  • Web hosting, email set up, and DNS knowledge ideal.
  • Code Level debuggers

Experience:

  • Experience with commercial web development projects
  • Experience with industry standard design packages such as PHP, WordPress theme and plugin development, JavaScript / jQuery, MySql.
  • Usability – understanding of how customers interact with websites and how to improve and innovate on same
  • Strong interpersonal skills
  • Ability to multi-task and ensure flawless execution and delivery
  • Passionate about all things web related
  • Good responsive design and user interface design.

 

We know you cannot have all these skills and you may have other skills of interest, please apply and let us know, if you want to work in a happy place and nerd out to your hearts content then this job is for you.

Email info@graphedia.ie with the subject line “Web Developer Role”

Remember, personality goes a long way,

personality goes a long way,

If you have sent in your cv before please send in again, remind me who you are again.

Interested? Then apply now and see what difference you could make!
Graphedia  is an Equal Opportunities Employer

All applications taken in the strictest of confidence

Meet the team, Testimonials

 

Email info@graphedia.ie with the subject line “Web Developer Role”

Bride Street Gang are back for Wexford Marathon Team Relay 2018

 

Graphedias one of the sponsors of this years Wexford Maratho, are sponsoring team “Bride Street Gang” in entering the  Wexford Marathon 2108 Team Relay. The team consists of Niall Reck (owner of Graphedia.com) and his fellow Bride Street childhood buddies, Dermot Foley, Gavin Hayes & Paul Hillis, who all grew up in the mean streets of Bride Street 😊 (OK Paul just go with it you are getting in on a technicality that your good wife is truly one of the gang members 😊)

We are putting out a challenge to any company or team to try and beat us at this years Wexford Marathon Team Relay.

Bride Street Gang are back for Wexford Marathon Team Relay 2018

We claim (are) to be the best looking, coolest and fastest team on the day and we have the photos to prove it (check out our superlative Running Shirts) and we challenge any team to beat us on

  • Coolest Team Photo
  • Most Awesome Team Name
  • Best Time on the day

We are Laying the smack down, So tag us on your entry to this years marathon, lets have some fun and see if you are cooler than us 40 year old studs.

Register online today http://www.wexfordmarathon.com/apply/

All proceeds go to great cause “It’s Good to talk

 

Can you beat the Bride Street Gang

Thanks to Lee Robinson Photography for the photos and Sportkit / Promotex for the Running Shirts.

Bride Street Gang are back for Wexford Marathon Team Relay 2018

Check out last years article Graphedia Sponsor & Take part in Wexford Marathon

 

Speed Update from Google: Page Speed for Mobile Search Rankings

Starting in July 2018, Google will use mobile page speed as a ranking in their mobile search results.

People want to be able to find answers to their questions as fast as possible — studies show that people really care about the speed of a page. Although speed has been used in ranking for some time, that signal was focused on desktop searches. Recently Google announced that starting in July 2018, page speed will be a ranking factor for mobile searches.

The “Speed Update,” as they are calling it (a new ranking algorithm), will only affect pages that deliver the slowest experience to users and it will only impact a small percentage of queries. It applies the same standard to all pages, regardless of the technology used to build the page. The intent of the search query is still a very strong signal, so a slow page may still rank highly if it has great, relevant content.

Full article here

So what does this mean ??

So make sure your site loads fast for desktop but especially mobile, if your website is a year or 2 older now time to come in for tune up and get those websites running.  Although speed is one element of ranking as Google says it is all about relevant content.  Put time into your content, if you have great content this will get results, if it is great content with a flash fast page speed then you are a winner winner chicken dinner.

 

Google Analytics Data Retention and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)

Over the past year Google has shared how they are preparing to meet the requirements of the GDPR, the new data protection law coming into force on May 25, 2018. Today they are sharing more about important product changes that may impact your Google Analytics data, and other updates in preparation for the GDPR. This is important and requires action even if you are not based in the European Economic Area (EEA).

Product Updates

Today Google introduced granular data retention controls that allow users to manage how long their user and event data is held on googles servers. Starting May 25, 2018, user and event data will be retained according to these settings; Google Analytics will automatically delete user and event data that is older than the retention period you select. Note that these settings will not affect reports based on aggregated data.

Action: Users of Anlaytics should review these data retention settings and modify as needed.

Before May 25, Google will also introduce a new user deletion tool that allows you to manage the deletion of all data associated with an individual user (e.g. site visitor) from  Google Analytics and/or Analytics 360 properties. This new automated tool will work based on any of the common identifiers sent to Analytics Client ID (i.e. standard Google Analytics first party cookie), User ID (if enabled), or App Instance ID (if using Google Analytics for Firebase). Details will be available on our Googles Developers site shortly.

Google say they remain committed to providing ways to safeguard your data. Google Analytics and Analytics 360 will continue to offer a number of other features and policies around data collection, use, and retention to assist you in safeguarding your data. For example, features for customizable cookie settings, privacy controls, data sharing settings, data deletion on account termination, and IP anonymization may prove useful as you evaluate the impact of the GDPR for your company’s unique situation and Analytics implementation.

Contract And User Consent Related Updates

Contract changes

Google has been rolling out updates to their contractual terms for many products since last August, reflecting Google’s status as either data processor or data controller under the new law (see full classification of our Ads products). The new GDPR terms will supplement customers current contract with Google and will come into force on May 25, 2018.
In both Google Analytics and Analytics 360, Google operates as a processor of personal data that is handled in the service.

  • For Google Analytics clients based outside the EEA and all Analytics 360 customers, updated data processing terms are available for their review/acceptance in their accounts (Admin ➝ Account Settings).
  • For Google Analytics clients based in the EEA, updated data processing terms have already been included in their terms.
  • If you don’t contract with Google for your use of our measurement products, you should seek advice from the parties with whom you contract.

Updated EU User Consent Policy

Per Googles advertising features policy, both Google Analytics and Analytics 360 customers using advertising features must comply with Google’s EU User Consent Policy. Google’s EU User Consent Policy is being updated to reflect new legal requirements of the GDPR. It sets out your responsibilities for making disclosures to, and obtaining consent from, end users of your sites and apps in the EEA.

Action: Even if you are not based in the EEA, please consider together with your legal department or advisors, whether your business will be in scope of the GDPR when using Google Analytics and Analytics 360 and review/accept the updated data processing terms as well as define your path for compliance with the EU User Consent Policy.

Find Out More

You can refer to privacy.google.com/businesses to learn more about Google’s data privacy policies and approach, as well as view their data processing terms.

Google say they will continue to share further information on their plans in the coming weeks and will update relevant developer and help center documentation where necessary.

Launching the 2018 Wexford Business Awards on Wexford’s North Main Street: Tom Enright (CE, Wexford County Council), Enda Kavanagh (CE, Wexford Chamber), Niall Reck (Chamber president) and Graham Scallan (vice president)

Top businesses across County Wexford will be recognised for their efforts at the 10th Annual Wexford Chamber Business Awards in May, the diamond anniversary of the event.

Over the years, the awards night and the awards themselves have become highly-successful and prestigious and their progress will be followed every step of the way by the Wexford People.

The awards night, which is sponsored by Wexford County Council, will be held at Clayton Whites Hotel on Friday, May 25, and will be hosted by comedian, author and broadcaster Colm O’Regan.

Around 500 local business leaders will be present at the awards, where local companies will be rewarded for their successes.

A lot of awards are up for grabs from Start-up Business of the Year right up to the Overall Business of the Year Award and the Chamber President’s Award, a lifetime achievement award given by Wexford Chamber.

The awards, which are free to enter, are open to businesses across County Wexford including both members and non-members of Wexford Chamber. The awards have a number of new categories this year including Family Business of the Year Award and Franchise of the Year Award.

The shortlisted companies, win or lose, will also have an opportunity to secure strong media profiling, as each shortlisting finalist is featured in the Wexford People.

Chamber President Niall Reck predicted the growing confidence in business in the region will be reflected at the awards ceremony.

‘We expect great interest once again and especially for this our 10th Anniversary. The success of our Business Awards has been because of the support we have received, and continue to receive, from businesses across County Wexford.

‘The level of entrepreneurship, innovation, courage and drive demonstrated by SMES is something that we recognise in our Business Awards and it is a pleasure to have the opportunity to say thank you and to celebrate success.’

The closing date for receipt of entries is Friday, April 13, with the shortlisted companies being announced on Friday, April 20. The awards winners will be finalised by the judging panel on Wednesday, April 25, and announced at the Black Tie Gala Awards Dinner on Friday, May 25, at Clayton Whites Hotel. Entrants will be judged by an independent judging panel comprising of senior management teams of the category sponsors along with other sector specialists judges.

‘We are excited to be working closely with Wexford County Council and all of our sponsors in order to make these awards bigger and better than ever! This is a special year and we would encourage all businesses, big and small to enter. Celebrating brilliance in business, we are delighted to offer a wide variety of categories to suit all sectors,’ said Enda Kavanagh, the new Chief Executive at Wexford Chamber.

For more information, contact Tracey Morgan at Wexford Chamber on 053 91 22226 or online at www.wexfordbusinessawards.ie

Sean Gallagher with Niall Rec, managing director of graphedia.com. Photo: Steve Humphreys
15th March 2018

Article by Entrepreneur Sean Gallagher in the Sunday Independent on the 25th March 2018

Striking a balance in business between enjoying what we do and making time for family and community is something that many entrepreneurs struggle with. It’s a struggle that design company Graphedia’s founder, Niall Reck, seems to have mastered. A growing business and active role in his community are yielding him both success and fulfilment.

Click here for Full article

Set up by Niall Reck in 2000 and with offices in Wexford and Kildare, leading digital design company Graphedia employs four staff and has annual revenues of almost €500,000. While it’s in a competitive environment where technology is constantly developing, the company has managed to carve out a successful niche for itself in the areas of web design, graphic design, app development and digital animation.

“We look after everything for our clients from developing traditional company logos and brochure designs to web design, ecommerce websites and SEO, or search engine optimisation. We’re also an authorised Google AdWords partner,” explains Niall. “Our key strengths lie in our creativity, our innovative approach to projects and the fact that we are absolutely passionate about everything digital.”

As he introduces me to the company’s senior developer and programmer, Brendan Doyle, the pair explain what’s required for success.

“It’s all about giving users a better experience, making sites easy to navigate, encouraging engagement and having clearly defined calls to action, whether that is to buy now, sign up, download or click through for more information.

“Today’s websites and apps need to be responsive in how they looks and feel. But they also be to be optimised for specifically-targeted user traffic – and this is where the integration of social media and video come in,” says Niall. “It’s also where Google Analytics and web marketing tools become essential so you know who is visiting your site, how long they are staying, where their eyeballs have gone and where they have clicked though as a result. We used to design for desktops and then adapt for desktop but with 75pc of our clients’ users coming via mobile, we now design for mobile first,” he explains.

The company has built up a diverse mix of clients, mostly from the SME sector, ranging from retail and construction to property, tourism and hospitality to manufacturing, finance and consulting firms. In addition, it looks after the design requirements for a number of local authorities and representative bodies such as chambers of commerce.

It’s a network of customers which Niall has built up over almost 20 years of working for himself as well as from his involvement in a myriad of community, voluntary and business organisations. He is president of the Wexford Chamber of Commerce, a past president of the Rotary Club of Wexford and an active fundraiser for the local hospital. Giving back to his community is important to him.

An outgoing individual, he began working in local bars and hotels during his teens and believes that this helped him develop his strong social and interpersonal skills.

“Business is all about being able to talk to people and read people. It’s something you have to develop and learn through experience,” he says.

Having completed a diploma in product design in Carlow IT, he joined a local IT firm and quickly got to work polishing his design, sales and training skills. After three years, he felt it was time to strike out on his own and so Graphedia was born. “The name for the business came to me in a dream,” he explains. “I just saw the words graphic and media coming together and fusing in a white light to reveal the name Graphedia.

“While I love the name, and it’s well-known now, back then it was funny how much time I had to spend explaining what this hard-to-spell name actually meant and where it came from.”

Just married, he broke the news to his wife Sarah that he was leaving his job and going out on his own. She was hugely supportive and encouraged him to follow his dream.

A qualified accountant, she joined the business in 2005. In the beginning, however, he worked from the couple’s home before moving to the Wexford Enterprise Centre and later managed to buy his current premises. “There have, of course, been many challenges along the way from having to compete with larger, more established businesses to managing cashflows,” admits Niall.

“However, we faced them all head on and if I couldn’t find a way through them I found an alternative way around them,” he adds.

The first five years flew by. As a sole trader in those early years, he looked after everything. “I was still working by myself. If I am honest, I was beginning to feel a bit of a busy fool,” admits Niall. “In 2005, I signed up to do a six-month part-time owner manager’s programme with business consultant and trainer Blaise Brosnan. Blaise helped me undertake a SWOT analysis of the business and also of my own skills. Importantly, he helped me realise where I was spending most of my time, much of which was on non-billable activities.

“I realised that it was time to begin to think and work more strategically. That’s when I decided to take on extra staff, including Sarah, who now looks after the finance and office admin side of the business, to help free me up to focus more on the business development side of things. As a result, I halved my working hours and doubled my turnover,” he adds.

In 2014, in order to extend the company’s reach, he opened a second office in the Kildare Chamber of Commerce hub in Naas.

He also recently added another employee to the team and is now looking at making a further hire in the near future.

“I love this business and the industry,” explains Niall. “From mobile and apps to 3D it’s constantly changing, which is exciting. I see huge potential in the whole 3D animation side of our business. We’ve been including this as part of promotional video for customers for some time now.

“It’s not only hugely effective in improving user experience, but is a real point of differentiation for us as a company. Plus, we love doing this type of work. We see virtual reality and augmented reality as something that will also soon become mainstream in the industry. That’s the great thing about this industry, you have to be constantly moving forward. Our job will always be to serve our customers’ needs no matter what the technological trends of the day are,” he adds.

NIALL’S ADVICE FOR OTHER BUSINESSES

Go with your gut

Our instinct is nature’s way of guiding us. Learn to trust your gut when making decisions. It’s seldom wrong. To become successful at anything, you first have to believe in yourself and learned to trust your own judgement.

Value your team

While in business, it’s vital to value your customers but it’s also important to value your team. They are the lifeblood of any business. Treat them well and make work fun. It is absolutely possible to enjoy the journey while still getting the job done.

Give back if you can

Life is about achieving balance. My formula for happiness is family first, then business and then charity. I believe it is important to give back to your community, whether through supporting your local school, hospital, Chamber of Commerce, Rotary Club or other voluntary initiatives in your area. That’s part of what real success is all about.

Click here for Full article

The Clanard Court Hotel in Athy, operators of Santas Magical Trail has scooped top ECommerce  award at the Kildare Business Awards  2017.

Santa’s Magical Trail – a fun filled and action-packed experience for children young and old!

Now in their 9th year Kildare’s Santa experience was recognised for its ECommerce excellence.

The awards took place in The K Club in November to a full house of over 300 local businesses.

The new ECommerce Website was designed and developed by Graphedia Kidlare, with a host of custom built features to help people book the event and hotel rooms online.  The success of the site meant that dates with hotel rooms were sold out within hours.

Event booking engine features

  • Allows the client to load multiple places by date and time
  • Allows the client to create multiple products or events
  • Coupon code and private booking features
  • Extendable reporting module
  • Realex payments integration
  • PDF ticketing with QR codes
  • REST API to allow external integrations

Hotel booking engine features

  • Allows the client to load bedrooms by type
  • The system automatically assigns rooms based on occupancy
  • Timer on checkout like Ticketmaster to ensure tickets are sold fairly.
  • Newsletter integration
  • Financial reports and stats
  • Full room and occupation report

You can visit the website here

https://www.santasmagicaltrail.ie/

 

Children’s charity Sensational Kids launch new website

Award winning children’s charity Sensational Kids has launched its new website which has been proudly sponsored by Kildare Website Design company Graphedia.

The charity provides affordable and accessible child development services for children of all abilities, including those with special needs and other developmental delays.

The website was built from the ground up, importing data from previous website, it is ECommerce  Responsive, with Realex Payments Integration, a donation feature, Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) Marketing, Rich Data Tags for e-commerce and a custom event booking plugin, with PDF tickets with QR barcodes, attendee lists and event reporting.

The collaboration between Sensational Kids and Graphedia came about when Sensational Kids was invited to do a presentation about its work to the Kildare Chamber of Commerce. One of the people listening to the Sensational Kids CEO Karen Leigh as she delivered her presentation was Niall Reck of Graphedia. He instantly offered to build a new website for the multi-award-winning charity as part of its corporate social responsibility efforts.

Karen says of the new website; “We were blown away with the generosity of his offer and even more delighted with the end results. We run an online child development shop as a fundraiser for our early intervention services for children so our website is critical to our funding streams.  Since the new website went live recently we have noticed a steady increase in sales from our online child development shop, which is helping us with our fundraising goals.  We really can’t thank Niall and his team at Graphedia enough for everything they have done for Sensational Kids.”

Niall Reck of Graphedia says Karen’s presentation inspired him to make his offer to build the website.

“When I heard Karen’s presentation I was inspired to offer her and Sensational Kids whatever services they needed. I saw an opportunity to improve on the website that they had and to make it more user friendly. The challenge was to build a website which has a bespoke design, promotes the services of Sensational Kids, has payment integration, includes a blog, accepts donations and promotes events with a ticketing option. Over two to three months we developed the custom-built website from the ground up with all of these features. It was a pleasure working with Karen and we are delighted with the end result. Graphedia was established 17 years ago in Wexford and we were delighted to have opened our Naas office three years ago.”

 

Sensational Kids Website Design Kildare

  • Sensational Kids helps over 200 children every month through Occupational Therapy, Speech and Language Therapy, Educational Psychological Assessments, Reading Tuition, Play Therapy and many more services. https://www.sensationalkids.ie
  • For further information about Sensational Kids, please visit www.sensationalkids.ie, call 045 520900 or drop into the shop and centre in Kildare Business Park, Kildare Town.
Graphedia Scoops Top Google Award – 2017 EMEA Mobile Ads Certification Challenge Award

 

Graphedia is proud to announce we’ve just won a top award from Google. Graphedia are certified Google Partners, as a digital agency we have been recognised as a Winner of the 2017 EMEA Mobile Ads Certification Challenge.

One of the Top Average Highest Scores in Ireland

Niall Reck attained the top mark.  Google Partners like Graphedia are focusing their efforts towards grasping the rapid advancement of mobile-centric digital advertising.

2017 EMEA mobile Ads Certification Challenge WinnerThe award recognises that Graphedia reached one of the top 10 highest average scores in the mobile ads certification challenge in Ireland. Graphedia took the Google Partners Mobile Ads Certification Challenge June 2017 and excelled in the results, demonstrating our expertise in optimising digital strategies across multiple devices.  Full details of this here

As Google notes, passing the exam is meant to show that you have “a demonstrated ability to build and optimize high-quality sites, and allows you to promote yourself as a Google accredited mobile site developer.”

Niall Reck from Graphedia said “We are thrilled with the recognition and shows the hard work and dedication the team here put into creating superlative mobile friendly websites for our customers.”

Sponsors of County Kildares Ecommerce Business Awards

Graphedia Sponsor the ECommerce Award in the 2017 County Kildare Chamber Business Awards. One of the most recognised, reputable business awards in the country.

The awards in November in the K Club, recognise the efforts businesses are making year on year to thrive and succeed.

Graphedia is one of the largest creators of Ecommerce Websites in the South East, with our motto “Create sales while you sleep” and over 5 million Euros in online transactions to date, we are very proud to have Sponsored the Award for the past 3 years and look forward to this year’s event, and wish all applicants the best of luck.

ECommerce In Ireland & Award

This award category is aimed at businesses keen to show how they are harnessing the latest business thinking and technology to keep them at the cutting edge when selling or trading online.

“With Irish consumers are now spending €850,000 an hour online, up 20 per cent on four years ago, making Ireland one of the fastest growing digital economies in the world.  The figure was contained in one of two reports, by Minister for Communications Denis Naughten, highlighting the burgeoning strength of e-commerce in Ireland.

The first report on the macro-economic impact of the internet indicated the digital economy here now encompassed 6 per cent of gross domestic product (GDP), equating to €12.3 billion.   However, on the current growth trajectory this will expand to about €21.4 billion or nearly 8 per cent of GDP by 2020.” Source Irish Times

For this category, the judges are looking for evidence of a successful E-commerce website, and selling online. The Business should be forward thinking with a determination to strive for continued success by pushing the boundaries. The winning business in this category should have an excellent appreciation of how new technology can deliver a competitive advantage.

CLOSING DATE FOR ENTRIES IS WEDNESDAY 20TH SEPTEMBER 2017 AT 5PM so get applying

Business can apply online for awards here

https://www.countykildarechamber.ie/county-kildare-chamber-awards/ecommerce-award/

The Full Irish Times Article can be read here

https://www.irishtimes.com/business/economy/irish-consumers-spend-850-000-an-hour-online-report-finds-1.2667357

Graphedia are the latest company to achieve EcoMerit Environmental Certification. This leading Digital Design Agency recognises the importance of sustainability in a modern business, and chose EcoMerit as a tool to guide them on their journey, through the Greensave Program with Wexford Chamber of Commerce.

Wexford Chamber alongside Econcertive, Wexford Local Enterprise Office and Wexford County Council have run the GreenSave project.  Which aims to provide assistance to Wexford businesses to help them become more sustainable while making savings on their energy, waste and water.

‘It’s all really just common sense’, observed Owner Sarah Reck. ‘We recycle, read our electricity and water meters to help us control our usage and we monitor our business travel. Simple things like making sure we switch off lights and appliances all add up. We avoid printing out documents as much as we can and hence minimise our paper waste.’

The EcoMerit programme helps member organisations across Ireland to measure and improve their environmental performance. Certification Manager Phil Walker said ‘It’s great to work with companies like Graphedia who already have a small carbon footprint but who still seek to make new improvements each year. This year they will implement a policy of buying only sustainably sourced paper. They will also be looking more closely at the impact of their business travel.’

For more information about EcoMerit go to www.ecomerit.ie

For more information About Greensave Programm go to http://www.wexfordchamber.ie/greening-wexford-businesses/

Website Defacement:  Attack of Reputation Online

Before the widespread use of the Internet, vandals who wished to make a point—or just make a name for themselves—were limited to physical vandalization. They might grab a can of spray paint and throw their logo on the side of a store or take some other similar action. Today, however, vandals are increasingly moving online, and the resulting activity is known as website defacement. This can come in many forms, including ransomware or hackers hacking, and it could lead your website being marked as dangerous for consumers. Are you prepared for anything like that?

What is Website Defacement?

Website defacement is any activity that changes the appearance or operation of a website without the consent of the owner. It can take any number of forms, such as placing unauthorized images on the website or removing items that the owner wants to have included. Sometimes, website defacement does not change the appearance of the website, but it may alter its functionality through the placement of a malicious line of code on the site. Ransomware is a great example of this, and isn’t something that most website owners are ever aware of until it’s too late.

Don’t forget if google thinks your website has been compromised it will put a note on your website when searching saying “this site may be hacked”, and a message like this is bound to make your customers click on the competitor next in line and not trust what you are selling.

Sometimes it can be down to a poor plugins installed on a website by a user, or the website just not being secure enough.

Still other forms of website defacement take the form of an attack on reputation: hackers may, for example, put up derogatory information about an entity on the entity’s own website. For some, hackers hacking into a website and posting unsavory facts or allegations about the website’s owner is simply the way they operate.

People who engage in website defacement do so for a number of reasons. For some people, it’s just fun to cause chaos and havoc. For others, it may be a form of protest, particularly if they put up their own message on the website of a business or entity that engages in activities with which they disagree. People who engage in website defacement as a form of attack on reputation frequently have a grudge against the owner of the site—and, deserved or not, they feel that hacking into the site is the way to get even.

What Can You Do About Website Defacement?

The best thing to do to protect yourself is to use an established business that specializes in protecting websites like Graphedia.com. Get your Website built properly free from nasty plugins installed with themed websites.  We can monitor your site for you and alert you to any website defacement. This frees you to focus on other things, such as running your business or focusing on your cause.

Website defacement can be a disaster, but it doesn’t have to be. Take steps to protect yourself today, contact graphedia.com 053 9144835

 

Continuing from our success at being awarded Google AdWords Partners for AdWords Search Ads last year, Graphedia have been certified AdWords Mobile specialists under the Google Partner Programme showing

Our new specialization recognizes that Graphedia has demonstrated expertise and sustained client performance in mobile advertising.

The Google AdWords certification is a professional accreditation that Google offers to individuals who demonstrate proficiency in basic and advanced aspects of AdWords. An AdWords certification allows Google to recognize Graphedia as an expert in online advertising.

 

Achieving Partner status means that we have demonstrated AdWords skill and expertise, met AdWords spend requirements and delivered agency and client revenue growth.

Our profile can be viewed https://www.google.com/partners/#a_profile;idtf=8464777227;

We now are credited with having the partner badge on our website showing that Google recognizes our agency as an AdWords certified partner.

So if you need help with your AdWord Campaign don’t hesitate to contact us

 

We had a lot of fun being  involved and taking part at this years Wexford Marathon, we had two teams enter “The Bride Street Gang” consisting of Niall Reck, Gavin Hayes, Dermot Foley and honorary Bride Street Member Alison Redmond from Kildare. The Second Team was Called “the Graphedia Babes” Which was Helen Sinnott, Laura Halpin, Elaine McMahon and  Ger Mulhall.

As part of the excitement and to help us run faster we got printed Limited edition racing T Shirts. See images, designed by Niall.

Happy to report “the Bride Street Gang” came in 7th and The Babes came in 21st.  One questions how we done that consider Niall was on the team and Gavin had spent a week on holidays (eating and drinking), on the beer at an Eddie Vedder concert 2 nights before and then enjoyed the Wexford Kilkenny match celebrations the day before 😊 .

Over 100 people entered the marathon and over 30 teams took part in the relay (in what is possible know as one of the toughest marathons in Ireland with the amount of hills involved), all running to raise funds for ‘Its Good 2 Talk’.  Friends of ‘Its Good 2 Talk’ Chairperson, Berna Rackard, said “We are so grateful to all of these athletes for their generosity both in terms of time and effort and the funds they have raised for our charity will really make a difference to the work that we do.  Thank you so much!”

Enjoy the photos below, hope to see more teams there next year try to take on the might “The Bride Street Gang”

 

You have just done a search on google for your name, and look there is a competitor paying for top position for your name.  A.K.A: They are being parasites (or maybe they don’t know this is happening). Following are some tips to let you know your rights.

A competitor bidding on your company’s name as a search term is frustrating, but it is entirely acceptable by Google.

What can you do if your competitor’s Google ad appears whenever a customer does a Google search for your company’s name?

It depends on the situation. Are they paying for bids using your name as a search term for their ad, or are they paying for your name AND using your business name in their ad?  These are two very different things and clarifying which they’re doing will show you what you can do to rectify the situation.

If your competitor is not actually using your name in an ad, but is only bidding on a search term using your name, Google will do nothing. Google’s position is stated on the AdWords website. It reads, “Google will not investigate or restrict the use of trademark terms in keywords, even if a trademark complaint is received.” However, if your company’s name is trademarked, and your competitor is using it in their actual advertising, there are things you can do to rectify the situation.

 

What can you do if they are using your name in their ad?

The first thing you can do is to complete a complaint form with Google, at this link:

https://services.google.com/inquiry/aw_tmcomplaint?hl=en-GB

Google are very responsive and will deal with your issue very quickly.

Before you do that, however, make sure you have a valid case to file a complaint. You’ll want to read through the rest of this article, and then take a look at Google’s trademark policies at this link:

https://support.google.com/adwordspolicy/answer/6118

 

Paying for your Name / Keyword

Competitors are allowed to bid on your company’s name and/or brand, but they shouldn’t be using it in their ad copy, pretending to be you. The only time they can use it is when they are a reseller of your services or goods.  This is called “pawning off” (to get rid of or pass off, usually by deception) and is a parasitic thing to do. In this case, you can submit a complaint to Google (they will sort it out very quickly) or you can take legal action (not so quick, but pawning off is a serious issue, so you may want to take more decisive action).

In some cases, your competitor may not aware they are doing it. This can happen if they have “broad match” switched on in their ad campaign. For example, if your company’s name ends with a generic word, like solicitor or gardener, it simply means they are paying for anything with the word solicitor or gardener in it (like Graphedia Solicitors). They are probably just paying for everything containing the word, solicitor. They are probably not aware they are doing it, unless they check all searched words in their adwords account. Most companies don’t know all the ins and outs of AdWords. In this case, a courtesy email asking them to add your name as a negative keyphrase would stop this from happening.

On the other hand, if they are paying for your business name, and your name is quite unique, like Graphedia, for example, then, you are most likely dealing with a parasite. Your competitor is looking to take business from you. This happens to many and, yes, it has happened to us.  It doesn’t just happen to big businesses either. It happens to small business owners, as well. In an odd way, it’s kind of a compliment. It means your competitor sees you as a threat. Should you be honoured? Not really. It took hard word to get where you are!

 

When you are dealing with a parasite, there are four things you can do to halt their actions.

  1. Send a letter or make a phone call
  2. Pay for your own name on Google
  3. Pay for their name
  4. Start a war

Now, wait just a minute. There is no need to jump to number four just yet. We want to avoid starting a war right away, no need to go Al Capone on them! (Enjoy video below please note they use bad language :)) but keep reading below

 

1. Send a letter or make a phone call
This should be your first option. Either telephone them or send a letter asking if they are aware of what they are doing. This is always the best approach, but it isn’t always done. Why would you do this? They obviously know what they are doing. It’s called professional courtesy and is a good place to start.

2. Pay for your own name on Google
Unfortunately, to stop it instantly you should start bidding on your own name, because it is your name, after all, and your website references your name. You will have a higher quality score and, in turn, not have to pay as much as your competitor for the word.  We have done it ourselves, and have put some entertaining ads there.

3. Pay for their name
You can approach this tit-for-tat, but, to be honest. I really see it only causing a higher bounce rate in your analytics. If someone is looking for you they will normally jump out of a site that doesn’t have your branding on it. On the other hand, however, some marketers might recommend you should be doing this. To be honest, the logic behind this trend seems sound. After all, if someone is typing in a competitor’s business name, they are interested in what your competitor has to offer, right? That means they are probably interested in what you have to offer, as well. While we’re not necessarily advising you to sink to the pathetic depths your competitor did when purchasing your name, we’re also not telling you NOT to. That’s more an ethical issue than a marketing issue. And by “ethical,” we mean, if you don’t use their name as a search term, you can claim to be taking the moral high ground to anyone who asks–or those who don’t ask, but you just happen to tell!

4. Start a war

One serious downside to bidding on a competitor’s brand name is that you are basically starting a war. They and/or you are openly inviting your competition to bid on their and/or your brand name to start poaching some of your potential sales. While bidding on their brand name will make it more expensive for them to bid on their own name, the same thing applies the other way around. Their bidding on your brand name makes it more expensive for you to convert on your own brand. We know of one funny story where two advertisig agencies were going at it with each other for a while. It even got to the stage where one of the companies created an adult orientated site based around the other company name, so when you searched for “so and so”, you got “ooh la la”.  As funny as this sounds, it ended up messy and the two companies reverted to option one, making a phone call to each other.

If this has happened to you, hopefully this article helps. It’s a good idea to do a regular search of your business and domain names on Google every now and then. You might be surprised to see who is paying for your name.

Costs for advertising on google can be as little as 10 cent per click

Graphedia is an authorised Google partner. We’re experts at helping our clients rise to (and stay at) the top of Google search results.
We’ll be happy to help build your Google AdWord campaign. Contact us today.

Graphedia Are very Proud to be a Sponsor of this years #wexfordmarathon Wexford Marathon 11th of June 2017, in support of the nominated charity “Its good to talk”……

We will also have a couple of Graphedia Teams for the relay so look forward to whooping all of you who try and get the title  😊  Are you going to take on the Challenge

Register today for either full marathon or team relay. Visit www.wexfordmarathon.com for more details

 

9th of April 2017 over 2000 people run and walk the 10 k & 10 mile Hope & Dream to help raise money for 2 fantastic charities, Wexford Home Hospice & the Hope Centre.  2 great charities that care for people diagnosed with cancer and also care for the families affected by Cancer.

There isn’t a soul in the world who hasn’t been touched or affected by cancer, loved ones  & friends taken away from us too soon.  Graphedia has been one of the proud sponsors of Hope & Dream since it was created over 6 years ago. We were asked would we get involved by the creators at the time John O’Leary (My Sport), Alan Maher (Maher Consulting) and Tom Herlihy (Turkuts Barbers)

I remember them talking passionately about the Hope Centre and the Share a Dream foundation (at the time it was the share a dream foundation hence the name the name Hope & Dream) and the great work they do for kids to grandparents affected by Cancer and how they were going to organise a 10 mile run.  I asked what they would like, just a logo they said.  They spoke so passionately I offered the logo no problem, plus any graphics they need and whatever website they would like.   I remember that day designing the logo, which is still used to this day.

We at Graphedia have been proud supporters of the Hope & Dream 10 and I have been running the 10 mile for 5 years now, Battling fitness & Injuries every year, running through rain and cold winds and don’t get me started on the hills of Enniscorthy 😊.  But I think this is a good thing, it reminds us of the pain and the struggle people go through on a daily basis and my little aches and pains are nothing in the scheme of things, but it helps us create awareness.

Family Run, John O Leary (cousin), Margaret Reck (Sister) and Me, before the run

We run / walk to remember someone and raise money for charity, but it is you the carers, you are the ones we do it for, it is your compassion and love for people that inspires us to raise money, you never want for anything, never complain or strike.  You are there for people coming to terms with their illness which I can imagine is heart breaking, but you are also there for the fathers / Mothers, the Sons / Daughters the Brothers / Sisters who when alone struggle with their own emotions, always there a shoulder to cry on.  You are always there and for this we thank you.

Sarah & Niall Reck at 2017 Event, after the run

I hope going forward that you get more state aid to help you with the amazing work you do, I hope to see you all at the next event to help support these great people.  In the meantime, if you have read this simple post and you feel you want to do something to support your local hospice or Hope Centre, come run / walk the race with us next year.

 

If you like you can donate the 2 charities at these links.

http://wexfordhospice.ie/

http://www.hopesupportcentre.ie/

Thank you.

 

A new mental health awareness campaign was launched this week by Mayor Frank Staples and the Wexford County Council.  The campaign takes the form of a series of 4 posters, each poster depicts a person removing their happy-face mask to show their “unhappy face” underneath indicating their true feelings.

The team at Graphedia where honoured to be asked to design up the posters for this campaign, photography by Paddy Donavon.  It involved setting the mode, colour and tone of the series of posters and then using photoshop to create 3 dimensional masks out for their happy smiling photos and super imposing these into hands over the sadder darker image of people with depression. See samples above and below

Each poster carries the tag line “ASK, one conversation can save a life.”


If you were to stop people on the streets, around 80 per cent of people would say that they know someone who suffers or has committed suicide, so it touches a lot of people both directly and indirectly.

At the Launch their was fascinating and very open stories of depression from Mayor Frank Staples and Alan O’Mara how it affected their lives, how they carried a mask for years, until it got too heavy to bare, 2 very inspiring stories that let people know it is ok to have depression and to speak about it with others.

So the campaign is for everyone, sometimes to be afraid to ASK for help, and don’t be afraid to Ask someone out there “Are you OK” you might need to say it 2-3 times before they let down there mask.

Well Done, to Frank, Wexford County Council and all the team involved in this truly inspiring campaign for Mental Health.

 

When you think of major holidays for eCommerce websites, you probably think of Christmas, Valentine’s Day, and Mother’s Day. Most people wouldn’t think of St. Patrick’s Day as a holiday people spend a lot of money on. However, according to the History Channel, more than $4.14 billion dollars are spent on St. Patrick’s Day in the U.S. alone. With some 80 million people around the world with Irish ancestry, this holiday is one online retailers simply can’t afford to ignore. Sure isn’t it great to be Irish.

But what can you do to make sure you don’t miss out on your pot of gold?

Here are a few tips for getting your eCommerce site (and customer base) in the St. Patrick’s Day spirit.

Be Creative

While millions of pints of Guinness are consumed between St. Patrick’s Day and the night that follows, it doesn’t mean you need to focus solely on a few aspects of the celebration to create a hit.  What would customers outside of Ireland like to buy, some authentic Irish item, novelty items, Irish Gift Hampers, Handmade Irish Goods etc etc. Advertise anything you can that works with the celebration, from fun hats and shirts, to gadgets

Think about how many people are going to be buying clothes, gadgets, and party favors to celebrate the night, before the celebration even begins. Use this as inspiration to bring people to your eCommerce site.

Green is Good, but Don’t Overdo it

What do you think of when you think of St. Patrick’s Day? For most, the color green comes to mind immediately. Of course every business out there is going to be going green in early March to show that they’re embracing the Irish. While adding green accents is certainly a good idea, don’t overdo it. Changing your website’s entire color scheme is probably a bit too much (I know we do it, but we are different ). Instead, add splashes of green here and there where it fits. Likewise, you don’t need leprechauns or pots of gold all over the place (Unless you are doing something really clever & Creative with them, like what we do, we convert all staff images into Leprechauns, and then use these as part of the marketing message).

Use Words and Numbers Related to Luck

Being lucky is associated with St. Patrick’s Day, so try to work that in somewhere. Luck is considered a positive attribute, and connecting that to your brand can help increase sales. Use the keyword “Lucky” for your discount code or work in the number seven, which is considered a lucky number. Offer seven percent off or put some products on sale for €7.  Four Leaf Clover, Buy three items get the Fourth for Free

Run a Sale

While people may not buy as many gifts on St. Patrick’s Day as they do for Christmas or Valentine’s Day, a sale is still going to bring in extra revenue. Have a weekend sale featuring anything related to St. Patrick’s Day. Remember to advertise that sale on all of your social media, too.

These are just a few ways you can increase your sales on St. Patrick’s Day.

Don’t be afraid to get creative and come up with unique ways of celebrating this holiday!

Some of our St Patrick’s Day Marketing we ran on Twitter, Facebook & Instagram, Don’t forget to follow us to see all our shenanigans

 

Graphedia are proud to be one of the sponsors at the 2017 Wexford Business awards, The awards now in their 9th year, the Wexford Business Awards, are county wide awards  that recognise the entrepreneurialism, innovation, diversity and talent of businesses of all sizes and across all sectors.

“We were very pleased to be able to support the most prestigious and largest business awards in the South East which has grown in stature and size since its inception, We have been sponsoring the awards for a few years now and it is a magnificent event” said Niall Reck, Director of Graphedia.

The awards honour Wexford’s industry leaders through the acknowledgement of innovative business processes, product development, enterprise, sustainability and overall business success. Central to the ethos of the Wexford Business Awards is sound environmental and green business practices, as the awards take into consideration the green credentials of all entries, across all categories.

View the website here

Winners and runners-up in each award category and the overall 2017 Wexford Business of the Year Award, sponsored by Wexford County Council, will be announced at the official Gala Awards Ceremony by host, Hector Ó hEochagáin, on Friday 26th May 2017 in Clayton Whites Hotel.

Launching the Wexford Business Awards 2017 on 6th March was (L-R) Tom Enright, Chief Executive Wexford County Council, Karl Fitzpatrick, President Wexford Chamber, Tracey Morgan, Office & Events Manager Wexford Chamber and Niall Reck, Director Graphedia.  Pic: Ger Hore 

 

Some top tips to help you promote your business Online for the lovers out there

Do you Know Shoppers are surfing for cards, chocolates, flowers and jewellery for their loved ones.
Don’t forget to check what is trending among hotel breaks and candlelit meals.

Searches for romantic gifts soar by 427% in February as people get ready for valentines day

Source Google

 

Think about it

What do we all order, Flowers, cards, gifts and Chocolates.  Some of those lucky couples even go out for a meal (romantic meal for two, maybe an expensive meal for two) in a location close to home and the luckier ones get to stay over night in a “5 Star Hotel”, or “Luxury Hotel” in a location not so close to home. Is your business targeting any of these Key Phrases, enticing couples to your store, or your town or your country.

 

What would you type in to find your service.

Think what would a man type in to google lying off on the sofa and maybe 1 or 2 nights before Valentines (possibly on the day) searching on his mobile phone last minute.

Then Think what a woman would type in 1 week before valentines (it is true, women are better prepared at these things )

 

Top Tips for AdWords for this month

Keep Budget uncapped and increase mobile bid adjustments by at least 30% between 5pm and 10pm.

As we are authorised PPC Google Adwords Partners , Sign up for a new Google AdWord campaigns for the month of February and we will give you a €120 spend on google AdWords to match your existing spend. Contact us today

 

If you are looking for Gift Ideas, we have put together a few sites that might help

Flowers

Dining Out

Gift Ideas

 

Holidays

 

 

 

 

Ireland’s Advertising Standards Authority Calls On Influencers And Bloggers To Declare Marketing Communications.

The ASAI, better known as the Advertising Standards Authority for Ireland recently released new guidance information on ‘Recognisability of Marketing Communications’. The goal is to help ensure Irish consumers do not get toyed with by social media websites or ads on blogs, through influencer marketing.

Rather than luring consumers into a false sense of security through celebrity endorsements or popular bloggers with a hidden agenda, these marketers must now fully disclose the fact that the communication is an advertisement. While the bulk of responsibility for the communication sits squarely with the advertising company, everyone involved has a measure of responsibility.

The goal is to slap a series of disclaimers and easily identifiable hashtags such as #SP or #Ad before the promotional pitch is even viewed by the consumer.

#SP = sponsored product

#Ad = Advert

Originally, advertisers could simply toss a small disclaimer before the-fold on websites or at the end of the marketing material. Some company’s get so sneaky with where this information is placed, that they tuck it away in the terms and conditions section of their material. They do this because they know, people don’t really read the terms and conditions entirely, and hope to slip one by consumers.

The new guidance on the ‘Recognisability of Marketing Communications’ issued by the ASAI outlines the general requirements of advertisers across social media, including:

  • Independent Reviews, including Blogger and Vloggers
  • Recognisability
  • Key watch outs
  • Free Products

The idea is to prevent paid advertisements from mixing in with the editorial content.

This is especially important for advertisements that are so well written and presented that it is hard to tell if it is simply a review or an actually advertising pitch controlled by company and fed to the masses through bloggers with large social media followings.

Online influencers, vloggers and bloggers are required to follow the ASAI’s Code of Standards for Advertising and Marketing Communications in Ireland. This covers all forms of marketing communication. Whether the information comes to you through email, social media or trained birds delivering messages like in the Game of Thrones, these guidelines must be followed.

 

Orla Twomey, CEO of the ASAI, says:

“The area of influencer marketing has seen a number of in-depth conversations both online and in the media recently as consumers voice their concerns about bloggers who may or may not be declaring marketing communications. Bloggers have also engaged in online forums where they have discussed best practice in so far as what exactly needs to be disclosed and when. The new ASAI guidelines aim to address these concerns and develop a uniform set of standards applicable to both companies and the bloggers who deliver the marketing communications.

As the independent self-regulatory body committed, in the public interest, to promoting the highest standards of marketing communications in Ireland, the ASAI aims to lead the way in ensuring all marketing communications are legal, decent, honest and truthful, inclusive of online influencer marketing.

As part of the ASAI’s ongoing Monitoring Service, the organisation has also begun monitoring blogs and online channels including social media. Furthermore the ASAI has also actively engaged with a number of bloggers to communicate the fact that the ASAI Code is applicable to all marketing and that all marketing communications must be declared. Feedback to date has been extremely positive as the ASAI aims to work with advertisers in the best interest of consumers, rather than against them.”

The days of company’s being able to hide, lie to, cheat and deceive consumers are greatly numbered. The ASAI, while financed by the advertising industry itself (go figure), aims to keep all marketing attempts honest, legal, truthful, and decent.

For a Pdf on ASAI GUIDANCE NOTE Recognisability of marketing communications Click here

 

What does it mean for Google Adverts

Well this is already covered by Googles “Google Advertement” symbol, so you don’t have to add to that side.

 

In other words, the ASAI wants to make sure you buy for the right reasons, not because someone pulled the wool over your eyes.

For more information please visit the ASAI’s Full article here

Dark Web : the part of the World Wide Web that is only accessible by means of special software, allowing users and website operators to remain anonymous or untraceable.

A little bit to help you understand the good, the bad and the ugly of “the dark web”.

By now, pretty much everyone is aware that their government can track what they do online. For this reason, the dark web is a valuable tool for those who have no interest in being followed. The dark web is, simply put, a part of the Internet that is not indexed by search engines, not easily accessible to everyone, and anonymous.

How the Dark Web Works

The dark web uses the Internet for communication between machines, just as “normal” websites do. However, accessing the dark web requires users to have specific software or configurations not available to most people.

The most popular domain suffix in the dark web is “.onion.”  This has nothing to do with small, pungent vegetables; rather, it is a reference to onion routing, a technique that uses encrypted information layered like the leaves of an onion. A full exploration of how it works is beyond the scope of this discussion. However, suffice to say, onion routing makes it much easier to hide online activity.

Users of the dark web frequently use Tor software. Tor is an acronym for “The Onion Router” and is a part of the onion routing setup. While it is not required to use Tor, it is far and away the most popular method of accessing the dark web.

 

Problems with the Dark Web

Of course, anonymity can lead to problems, and the dark web is no exception. It has been used for such unsavory activities as weapon and drug sales, contracts to engage in illegal activities, and so on.

One popular website was the Silk Road. The Silk Road was essentially an online market where people could purchase any number of illegal items using bitcoin currency. The United States federal government investigated the site and, in October of 2013, shut it down and arrested its founder. Ross Ulbricht was charged with conspiracy to traffic narcotics, computer hacking, and money laundering. (There were also issues with a murder-for-hire case, but that case is still pending.)

Still, as with anything else, the dark web does have good uses. For example, in some countries where free speech is restricted, it is used for political activities.

Be aware that—even on the dark web—it might still possible for a determined government actor to identify and track activity. Thus, users should not assume they are completely anonymous, and should govern themselves accordingly.

 

So there you have it, if you think the regular web has its weirdos, this is the twilight zone of the web (The Good, The Bad & The Ugly) that you should stay clear of unless you really really have too.

 

 

Niall has been a member of the Rotary Club of Wexford for over 5 years, lately having become the President of the club.  At this years Christmas Party Niall was awarded the Paul Harris Fellowship Award.

Jurgen Sassman, Hon Sec of Rotary Wexford, also addressed the Rotarians.  He commented on the success of the Club under the watchful eye of Niall and drew our attention to the wonderful website and much improved social media platform of Wexford Rotary, something that has been driven by Niall through his company Graphedia.com here in Wexford. Jurgen, aided and abetted  by Maura Bell, currently VP of our Club, then presented Niall with a prestigious Paul Harris Fellowship Award.  Rotarians have a tradition of honouring individuals who have made significant contributions towards the wellbeing of their Club.  Niall has certainly earned this accolade.  Hearty congratulations on this Award came Niall’s way – very well deserved!!

On behalf of his wife Sarah and himself Niall said “ I know the great people that have been given this award in the past, I am truely honoured to be given this fellowship, Thank you to my Vice President Maura Bell (who used to be my boss in Whites hotel 20 odd years ago) and a big thank you to founding memeber Jurgen Sassmanhausen for his kind words, a man that used to teach me German in school, almost 25 years ago. I look forward to your continuing support in the New Year and in the meantime we would like to wish you and your families our very best wishes, and a peaceful 2017.”

What is the Paul Harris we hear you say?

The presentation of Paul Harris Fellow recognition is The Rotary Foundation’s way of expressing its appreciation for a substantial contribution to its humanitarian and educational programs. It is named for our founder, Paul Harris, a Chicago lawyer who started Rotary International with three business associates in 1905.

Rotarians often designate a Paul Harris Fellow as a tribute to a person whose life demonstrates a shared purpose with the objectives of the Rotary Foundation. Today we have the honour and pleasure of recongising Niall Reck as he becomes a Paul Harris Fellow.

When a person is recognised as a Paul Harris Fellow, they are presented with a Certificate signed by the Rotary International President and the Chairman of the Trustees of The Rotary Foundation, and a lapel pin and medallion. The contribution to The Rotary Foundation can be made in one sum or by cumulative giving over a number of years. Individuals can make a personal contribution or the contribution can be from a club, a company or business.

From all of us here we wish Niall the continued success with rotary as it keeps him out of the office for a while 🙂

Congratulations to Team at Kildare Now for Winning the Ecommerce Social Media Award at this Years North Kildare Business Awards 2016 held in the K Club in November.  Commercial Manager of KildareNow Anna Fortune accepted the award with Content Manager Senan Hogan and Multimedia Account Manager Louise Cunningham.  Launched only 15 months ago, KildareNow won the E-Commerce & Social Media Category in which KBC bank and The Irish Biltong Co were also nominated.

Sarah & Niall Reck from Graphedia.com at The North Kildare Chamber AwardsNorth Kildare Chamber Business Awards 2016 in association with Clark, were held on the 18th November in The K Club. The awards are county wide awards recognising the entrepreneurialism, innovation, diversity and talent of businesses across all sectors. The awards honour industry leaders through the acknowledgement of innovative business processes, product development, enterprise, sustainability and overall business success.

Graphedia are very proud to have Sponsored the Award for the past 2 years, This award category is aimed at businesses keen to show how they are harnessing the latest business thinking and technology to keep them at the cutting edge when selling or trading online. For this category, the judges are looking for evidence of successful E-commerce website, selling online, with good use of social media . The Business should be forward thinking with a determination to strive for continued success by pushing the boundaries. The winning business in this category should have an excellent appreciation of how new technology can deliver a competitive advantage.

Best of luck to the finalists Proud Sponsors of this years awards

Graphedia also supplied all the graphics and Video animation for this prestigious event

 

Graphedia have been awarded Partner status with google on their expertise with Google Adwords.  The Google AdWords certification is a professional accreditation that Google offers to individuals who demonstrate proficiency in basic and advanced aspects of AdWords. An AdWords certification allows Google to recognize Graphedia as an expert in online advertising.

Achieving Partner status means that we have demonstrated AdWords skill and expertise, met AdWords spend requirements and delivered agency and client revenue growth.

Our profile can be viewed https://www.google.com/partners/#a_profile;idtf=8464777227;

Niall is clearly happy with partnership :)We now are credited with having the partner badge on our website showing that Google recognizes our agency as an AdWords certified partner.

Niall Reck the owner of Graphedia says “It is great for our company, we are absolutely thrilled with the partner status, we strive to moving forward and giving our customers the best and latest service, it shows the hard work we here at graphedia put into achieving results for our customers.”

 

So if you need help with your AdWord Campaign don’t hesitate to contact us

Seventh Annual Wexford Business Expo Brings Local Businesses Online

On Thursday November 10th, Wexford County Hall became the home for Google and Microsoft as the 2016 Wexford Business Expo provided local businesses with the knowledge and practical advice to establish and develop effective online sales strategies for their products and services.

Featuring many high profile speakers, who discussed the various factors that contribute to creating a successful e-commerce strategy. A particular highlight of this year’s Expo was the Google Digital Garage workshops, which took place throughout the day.  The Google Digital Garage, which has been described as the ‘Growth Engine for Digital Skills’, enables users to discover the complete range of Google tools that are at their disposal and how they can be used to maximise the effectiveness of an online presence.

The 2016 Wexford Business Expo was organised by the Wexford Chamber of Commerce, in conjunction with Wexford County Council, lead sponsors Zurich Insurance and ESET and media partner, the Sunday Business Post.

Business Expo Stands

Graphedia Also produced all the branding for the Expo, from Logo Design, Advertising Design, Posters, website, Banners and the Animated Promotional Video

8 Awesome Tips For Entrepreneurs to Keep You Movin’ This Week!

 

For most of us in business, entrepreneurship could be defined like this:  “I don’t have a 9-5. I have a when I open my eyes to when I close my eyes”…

Or like this…

“I am the maker of my products & services, the marketer, the accountant, the head of HR, the tax guy and the lunch lady!”

Running your own business ain’t for the faint hearted, that’s for sure. It takes graft, determination, business smarts, stubbornness and definitely a little madness!

There are, however, some awesome pearls of wisdom that have been passed down by the entrepreneurial greats along the way. And taking heed of those pearly words, could just make that path a little less crazy and complicated!

Here are some words from the greats to keep us motivated this week…..Gather round entrepreneurs!

Steve Jobs: “Have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow know what you truly want to become”

Richard Branson: “If someone offers you a great opportunity and you’re not sure you can do it, say yes – then learn how to do it later”

James Dyson: “While Developing my vacuum, I went through 5126 failed prototypes and my life’s savings over 15 years. But the 5127th prototype worked, and the Dyson brand became the best-selling bagless vacuum brand in the United States”

Henry Ford: “When everything seems to be going against you, remember that the airplane takes off against the wind, not with it.”

Timothy Ferriss: “Focus on being productive, instead of busy”

Yoda: “Do or do not. There is no try!” …(Yes, yes, we know Yoda is technically not an entrepreneur but he is one of the greats, so he had to make an appearance in our opinion!)

Mark Zuckerberg: “If you just work on stuff that you like and you’re passionate about, you don’t have to have a master plan with how things will play out.”

Bill Gates: “The first rule of any technology applied in a business is that automation applied to an efficient operation will magnify the efficiency. The second is that automation applied to an inefficient operation will magnify the inefficiency”

 

Well, we feel inspired – we hope you do too!

google-adwordsAnd we also wanted to add our own note on the great Bill Gate’s words on automation. You see, at Graphedia, getting our clients more online leads and sales is our business and let’s just say that business is gooooood! 😉

We believe that if you are following the sage advice above and you are working on something you are passionate about, you have a great product or service and an efficient business, then automation of your business is a step that can take your business to the next level and beyond.

What do we mean by automation? Well, its simple really, we mean driving warm/interested leads to your website and turning those leads into sales for your business through the use of online sales funnels, SEO, paid traffic and more.

…Essentially making sales while you sleep!!

If you would like to chat to us about automating your business and making more sales online while you sleep (!) then, why not give us a shout today.

P.S. We have a great summer offer running right now – sign up to 6 months of Google Adwords with us and receive a FREE €90 google adwords voucher! (We’re nice like that!!) Grab ‘em while they last.

Adwords-Free-Voucher-Google-Partners-Gameon

You might have noticed we have launched a ‘little project’ we have been working on for almost 10 YEARS!!

OUR BRAND NEW SUPER FUNKY, COMPLETELY OVERHAULED WEBSITE IS FINALLY LIVE!

Ta-da! Fan-fare! Trumpets! Drum Roll! Dancing Boys ….Ok, maybe not that last piece!

We are so excited to launch our new look Graphedia.com website that has been in the making for almost 10 years.

Phew, that was a lot of work and a long time coming!

The team here at Graphedia have been flat out working on a crazy amount of funky new websites for our clients that we barely had time to create our own super cool new site (See? We look after you first!)

Graphedia.com is a state of the art, mobile responsive site that we custom built, from scratch, to meet our own very specific company needs. Yep, we are just that good 😉

Super Awesome Website Design & Merketing Ireland

Our Creative-Juicy Bits!

We wanted to be able to showcase the very best of our work, our coolest designs, our most awesome apps and in general we wanted you to see all of our creative-juicy bits! (We even thought about making it glow in the dark!)

It was also important to us that we could give you heaps more great info about our services, provide a place for support and help for our clients and allow our clients to pay for our services right there on our website. Haaandy!

The site was custom designed , from scratch, with a whole new look, new branding and a heap of techy stuff that our incredible team of super-nerds worked on diligently until it was just right.

In fact, excuse us while we nerd out for a second;

The Techy Stuff

Graphedia.com is;

  • Fully responsive site, built on top of Twitter Bootstrap.
  • Custom developed AJAX portfolio section & portfolio sliders.
  • Custom developed share feature.
  • Custom social media feeds.
  • Parallax scrolling effects.
  • Uses the latest JavaScript and CSS3 techniques.
  • We used only minimal off the shelf plugins which increases the security of our site, as well as increase load times.
  • We use the latest caching techniques, gZIP compression and minification of our code to serve our site as fast as possible.
  • SEO optimised.
  • We use the latest SDK’s from Google+, Facebook & Twitter to analyse social interaction with the new website.
  • Full use of the latest techniques to get the most out of Google Bot such as “Schema” tags and “rel” tags on links.

 

Ah, that felt good!

Ok, time for the sentimental bit:

Its aliveI (Niall) want to extend a HUMUNGOUS thank you to my awesome team who drove this project and put up with all of my often picky, perfectionist requests! Sarah, Brendan, Corey, – you guys are legends (Hi Bobby, thank you too). And a huge thanks to my kids too for badgering me every morning for the last year – “Dad, Dad, is it done yet?”

And of course, a big shout out, to our fabulous clients. Without you, we wouldn’t be able to do what we love and nerd out on design on a daily basis!

Why not take some time to have a good mooch around the site and get to know us?

Enjoy!

(The Interwebs Just Got Safer!!)

You know when you browse a website, you surf the net, you buy something online or just generally interact with websites? Well, have you ever wondered what happens to your personal data? Or how is it that marketers always know exactly which products you have been looking at and which ads to send your way?

Well, that is all done through … The Magic of Google Analytics.

Google Analytics is a Google product that essentially allows businesses to look at your interaction with their website and to check out how much time visitors spent on their sites, which pages they looked at, which products they browsed before eventually whipping out that credit card and making a purchase!

In the past, the communications between those businesses’ websites and Google Analytics was not always secure. Sites using HTTPS did benefit from secure (encrypted) communication between their website and Google Analytics, but those sites using HTTP did not and so personal data was not always secure.

Big Changes

However, that all changed last Wednesday when Google announced that they will now be securing all traffic communication of websites using Google Analytics, whether the website is HTTPS or not.

Google announced that “…with the increase in privacy related concerns we have made the decision to secure all communication to and from Google Analytics, protecting our clients, our client’s end users, and the broader internet”

So, What Does This Mean For You?

Well, for you, the end user (i.e. when you are browsing a website yourself) you can breath easy knowing that the data that is collected when you browse or interact with any website, either HTTP or HTTPS, is now encrypted and much more secure.

Essentially the inteweb is safer!

What Does This Mean If You Are A Business With A Website?

For you the business owner, this means two things:

  1. You can now tell your customers that their data is even more secure! Yay! Bonus!
  2. There is a downside, however for websites with SSL’s. Encrypted traffic is ever so slightly slower than unencrypted traffic and so you may see a slight increase in bounce rate – ie people not patient enough to wait an extra second before they leave your site! Did you really want them there anyway we ask you?

That’s about it.  We hope you found this little explainer blog useful.

 

To get 10,000 Irish businesses online for the first time and to get a further 2,000 Irish SMEs trading online over a period of two years, the Government have introduced a “trade-onlinevoucher scheme as part of the National Digital Strategy.

This allows businesses to secure funding for 50% of their projects spend, up to a maximum reclaim of €2,500.

We have hundreds of customers selling online throughout Ireland and we would look forward to working with you too.  If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact Us.

What the vouchers can be used for:

  • Development or upgrade of an e-commerce website
  • Implementing Online payments or booking systems
  • Purchase of Internet related software
  • Purchase of online advertising
  • Developing an app (or multiplatform webpages ?)
  • Implementing a digital marketing strategy i.e. Social media marketing
  • Consultation with ICT experts for early stage adopters of online strategy
  • Training/ skills development specifically to establish and manage an on-line trading
  • Activity

trade-online-voucher-scheme2

What the vouchers cannot be used for:

  • Businesses that are not already trading
  • Development of brochure websites
  • Purchase of non-internet related software
  • Anything other than online trading related activity

The vouchers are targeted at businesses with the following profile:

  • No online presence or companies seeking to improve their online presence
  • < than 10 employees
  • < turnover of €2m per annum

Graphedia win The Networker of the Year Award at North Kildare Chamber of Commerce Business Awards.

The award was Sponsored by Hanahoe & Hanahoe

North Kildare Chamber Business Awards 2015 in association with ISS Recruitment and Training were held on the 27th November in  The K Club.  The awards are county wide awards recognising the entrepreneurialism, innovation, diversity and talent of businesses across all sectors. The awards honour industry leaders through the acknowledgement of innovative business processes, product development, enterprise, sustainability and overall business success.

Little Video from Tara Lane on the night, thanks tara


Graphedia also sponsored the “Ecommerce Social Media Award” which was won by Future Ticketing

Graphedia are Runner Up at Wexford Chamber of Commerce  Service Provider Award sponsored by Datapac

The Wexford Business Awards, are countywide awards recognising the entrepreneurialism, innovation, diversity and talent of businesses across all sectors. The awards honour Wexford’s industry leaders through the acknowledgement of innovative business processes, product development, enterprise, sustainability and overall business success. Central to the ethos of the Wexford Business Awards is sound environmental and green business practices, as the awards take into consideration the green credentials of all entries, across all categories.

“We are delighted to have been nominated in this years award, there are some great companies in the category and Kerlogue Nursing Homeare deserving  winners”

 

2015 marks the 15 year in business for Graphedia, and to continue with the success of the company we have just opened our new offices in Sallins Road, Naas, County Kildare. We plan on recruiting more people to join our Kildare branch in the future, so if you feel you have the skills contact us. We put the success of Graphedia down to our excellent staff and superlative customers.

We are delighted with the move and look forward to working closely with the North Kildare Chamber in helping our company grow further. The big key if you are interested was to go with the opening phrase, “The Key to our Success” we do not sell keys, but we did have fun with it 🙂

See below some photos of the opening day with Minister Jed Nash, and other local businesses from Naas.

Kildare-new-office-opening2

Not holding the key this time, in the photo from Left to right Niall Reck (Graphedia), Ronon Twohig (house of Finance), Vice President Chamber Vivian Cummins, President Niall Browne & Keith Traynor (HTH Accountants)

Kildare-new-office-opening3

Vice President Chamber Vivian Cummins, Minister Jed Nash, President Niall Browne & Keith Traynor (HTH Accountants) in front Niall & Sarah Reck (Graphedia)

Well we are back, best to start this story from last years race

Race Day 2013, It’s day I will never forget, 1000 odd people there to run / walk the race, family & friends there to support us, a great buzz in the air, but the thing I remember most is the feckin cold, my god it was freezing that day. But Myself and my running partner Shane Carroll stripped down to the shorts & shirt and headed on, in fairness I think it was the cold that kept us going for fear of god should we stop we would have frozen to the floor.

Myself and Shane took a steady pace, meeting up with friends along the way (Hi Terry O’Dowd and David Burke, troopers) and managed to complete the run in a respectable 1:47, I think the congratulatory bum slap every mile spurred us on.

Now there are two things I felt when crossing that line, a great sense of achievement, having never dreamed I could do it, it felt great to cross the line but better yet was to see my wife and family at the finish line spurring me on, and to see the look of pride in my little girls eyes nearly brought me to tears, something I will always treasure.

Like most people I got my fitness back, a love for going out training, you may see myself and Shane running around wexford town in the early mornings or cycling to rosslare and I lost 10kg (from 104kg down to 94kg) before the race, so I lost the man boobs and belly, i was toned as they say.

What is the goal this year, to get fitter, lose about 5kg (christmas splurge), and come in in a better time.  But we also have some new recruits, we have Tim Nolan joining us this year, (makes me sick, he is just born fit, and making myself and Shane look like an asthmatic convention) and we all have a bunch of friends going to do the run / walk this year too.

An executive decision by my wife has concluded I won’t be growing a beard while training this year ( i was having a rocky 4 moment last year), as great and as much as i loved it, there is only some many homeless, hobo jokes I can put up with (I have grey hair and my beard was patchy ginger).

Read my previous blogs from 2013 online, for all our highs and lows in training, injuries, beards and weight loss experiences.

So I say this to all of you who think they would love to do it, or need a goal to lose weight, set the Hope and Dream 10 as your Goal this year, whether you run or walk it, if you start your training today you will lose weight, you will feel great and two great charities will benefit from it, it will also change your life.

So go do it, start training today in 10 weeks time you will be better for it.

– See more at: http://www.hopeanddream10.com/2014/02/06/on-the-road-again/#sthash.NtImmLQz.dpuf

Due to rising demads for our services we have hired our another Developer / Programmer. Everybody say hello to Brendan Doyle from Enniscorthy, he like Pinna Colades and singing in the rain. (will change this ;))

Brendan (nerd) is a very talented developer and we be delighted to help in assisting you with any web development or APP development enquirers you may have.

I’m out running around Wexford, my plan tonight is to increase my target to 6 Miles as I have 5 weeks left. As I run down Wexford Marine the stitch from hell hits me (both sides), so now I’m running and my sides feel like something is trying to get out.  I continue running and I start imagining the famous alien scene, I imagine that little bugger trying to rip its way out of my sides.  I continue running as I have no clue how to get rid of it, as I do I start thinking of the Braveheart scene at the end where they are taking his insides out of him, and just like Mel defiant to the end he screams the famous words, my inner sole screams something similar HOPE & DREAMMMM.  In a weird way this spurs me on, I am now 3 miles in and not even out of breath. As I run a few things come into my mind, of the people that have come up and said they could not do 10 miles or worse yet, said they would do it and now starting to back out, this is something that has never entered my mind and I will try to explain why and maybe it might change their minds. When I run, I see faces of people at the launch of H&D 10, I see the faces of the children with no hair, I see the face of the father who is diagnosed with cancer who knows the inevitable is soon. This man speaks to me telling me how great the Hope centre is, what they have done for him.  As he says these words I see his sons eyes, loving staring at his father and I remember having that same stare of love and hope many many years ago.  A stare unfortunately all of you will see or experience in your life especially when Cancer is involved.  I remember the words from Margot Kehoe from Hope and Shay Kinsella from Share a Dream on the night of how the money doesn’t go to buy medical equipment or to find a cure but on the little things, like cushions for chairs when people in the hope centre are painting to make them more comfortable or money for art supplies.  Or how Share a dream care & support for the entire family and not just the sick child. And as all these faces come into my mind I find I am running harder, faster and the stitches haven’t even dawned on me and I’m reminded that the money we raise is for people of Wexford, it is for our Fathers, Mothers, Brothers, Sisters, Sons, daughters, friends or loved ones that unfortunately might get this unforgiven sickness, to make their last moments a little more enjoyable. With all this in my head I feel if the people involved asked me to run 100 miles I would do so, as would everyone else there that night. So I am coming to the end of my 6 miles I am barely out of breath, and the stitches are in the background (BTW if any of you know how to get rid of stitch please let me know, they are distracting) and I hope this encourages you all to keep on going. – 

Ok so January is upon me, I have only 82 days left to run the 10 mile so lets just see how I get on and I haven’t actually ran yet so it is time to get on the road, now that I have my new turbo runners and yellow canary running jacket (thanks My Sport & Santa) it shouldn’t be a problem -right. Well in two words “not good” I say I ran 100 yards before I had to stop and take a good break.  I convince myself maybe it was just initial shock and continue onwards, again another 100 yards and bam my body stops, frustration is kicking in, I march onwards and continue this for the next 30 minutes.  I can feel every stone of my body weight (all 16 and a half stone of it) hammering my legs when I run, and it dawns on me, one I’m really out of practice / shape and two I might have pigged out too much this christmas. The nightmare of eating too much turkey over many many days has come back to haunt me and in hindsight I think my body thought the new runners would move my legs for me.  So I head home disheartened but knowing I need to up the gears. So I need a plan asap,  I really need to shift weight as I am carrying too much, after talking to the nutritionist (Hi Ciara) it turns out, I really am not putting in the right foods to keep me going, I eat far too much Toast in fact I eat near enough to a Sliced brown pan a day between toast and sandbos, so they are out.  And who would have thought it that fried eggs etc are bad for you (noooooo) so back to poached and boiled eggs for me.  Fizzy drinks are now out, Tap water is in, so are more oily fish, tuna, mackerel etc, I believe the word is Protein and the more of the better as long as I don’t fry it.  So just to be clear I am not on a diet I am just changing what I eat for the better.  I feel like I’m saying “I’m not fat, I’m big boned.” So Five weeks on… I am now running up to 5 miles jogging up forth mountain and lovin it, I really enjoy going out, myself and Shane also run 3km twice a week around town (the Hilly bits). I have lost 8kg in the past 5 weeks and I have been eating like a king (thanks to Phelim Byrnes recipes, Mick Kelly’s low carb / sugar plan and Ciaras Warnings).  My legs are now stronger, I’m getting faster and my recovery rate has hugely improved and my new turbo shoes are supporting my ankles great, also my blood pressure is dropping (first time in years). One other change is I have started to grow a beard (to my wife’s annoyance might I add) but it is great it keeps your face warm and no-one recognises the wheezing, staggering lump running around the mountain.  So I recommend you all get one and good shoes. So it is going well, lots of support happening down here and it is great to see so many people taking part. – See more at: http://www.hopeanddream10.com/2013/02/19/fatman-rises/#sthash.Il03FZ5O.dpuf

So I need to get on the Road, now due to my ankles not healed yet i will spend the first month or so on the Bike.  Saturday is the planned day for the cycle with my buddy Shane Carroll who has signed up for the race too, level of fitness same as me (poor), but I am more handsome.  So we plan to meet at 7:30am, now I don’t know what was harder, cycling the bike at that hour or getting out of the bed on a Saturday at 7am to one of the frostiest mornings I have seen this year.  But I got up and put the gear on (when i say gear I mean tracksuit, three jumpers a coat and a yellow reflective jacket and my new helmet from Hayes cycles, always best to be safe than sorry and I felt three jumpers would be more than enough to keep me warm. As it turns out upper body was fine, well protected, my hands and bottom half of my body on the other hand where the wind is channelled was not so warm in fact it nearly froze off. We decided to go along the Rosslare Road, see what shape we would be like in 30 mins and take it from there, so we headed out. First thirty minutes was great, we were at a good speed, warmed up well, feeling proud of our fitness we continued all the way to Rosslare Strand (pat on the back moment), it was great, great scenery and we were not that tired, we headed back.  Now it dawns on us that we are not as fit as we think, turns out the road  is mostly downhill from Whitford to Rosslare strand and that the wind had been on our backs the whole way down, now we had to cycle back into the wind (which was a breeze but felt like a hurricane) and cycle uphill the whole way back, the worst one being the mountainous hill from Mcdonalds to Whitford, I now regretted shouting weeeeee on the way down it when we first started out. I recall saying feel the burn many times as my thighs went on fire and to the end my hip joints and cocixs seised up like rusty gate, but we got there and to my amazement I have had no pains, the pain must be saving itself for next week.   So we did it in 2 hours and proud of our achievement we have arranged to go again next week, but with more thermals and gloves and also check the wind direction before we decide what route to take. Feeling proud of myself when I get home I brag all round me, eat like a man possessed and pass out for the next 2 hours.  Fitness is getting better, feeling great and enjoying it. Fitness level feeling good after and enjoying it, Weight loss to date still the same, man boobs and belly are retreating.  People are being very supportive and there has been a large number of people signing up to to run the race which is great. So please help spread the word and register online as soon as you can, if I can do it anyone can   You can Walk, Jog or Run 

so the training begins and so does the pain

First week back in the Gym and thank god I started light, I started on a Wednesday doing the strength training in Total Fitness Systems and naturally I was put in the beginners section doing some light stretching followed by some light kettlebell work and then a lot of exercises on the thigh region (squats, lunges etc).  All was grand the hour and half went by quick and I kept up with my fellow sports athletes.

At the end I felt great, my blood was moving, I said my goodbyes and left, now I don’t know what fresh air has on the unfit, but as soon as I got outside I had flashbacks of a rag week I had in Carlow many years ago, my thighs just gave up, I wobbled to the car like a drunk who can’t understand why the world is moving the opposite way than the direction intended.  I got to the car eventually, this should have been a sign of things to come, as the next day I woke to find someone had replaced my legs in the middle of the night with a pair of unmovable lead bars that hurt when i look at them (i’m told this is a good thing).  So I needed to warm them back up, so on Thursday night I went to the boxing class, the class was taken by Francis aka Chuck Norris (Don’t mess with me) so whinging that I can’t do something is not an option and I’m a man and if I’m going to whinge, it will be to the wife.  So it begins on the legs and I can barely move mine (lead leg syndrome), training goes well, I get through it and wobble to the car. For the following 4 days I was the butt of many jokes in the office as one day I had to climb the stairs like a man fighting gravity.  

Week 2, I started on strength fitness and my body was back to normal, exercising went well, still kept it light and at the end managed to walk to my car without the need of a zimmer frame.  Thursday night was boxing, where we worked on shoulders, arms, speed and technique, through skipping and boxing on the bag, now like every male in the world put in front of hanging bag I hammered that bag like their was no tomorrow, a lot of therapy sorted out right there, night went well and I slept like a baby. Next day legs were fine, shoulders felt strong (or used for the first time in a while) it was only when at the desk in the office I realised I couldn’t pick up a pen and when I did manage I felt like the girl from kill bill trying to pick up rice with chopsticks, all the muscles in my forearms were on strike (or the boxing bag was having its own sick revenge on me).  Going to be another day before I can write and another day before the guys in the office to stop laughing at me. So feeling good after all that and enjoying it, Weight loss to date strangely I have put on weight, must be all the muscle I have built up in my man boobs.  Wexford Numbers for the run/walk are growing fast which is great so if you would like to join us this March please do, or if you need any info on it, please contact me or the guys here at Hope and Dream 10. 

These are some of the posts I wrote for the Hope and Dream 10 mile charity run in Enniscorthy to help raise money for two great charities Hope and Share a Dream. We were trying to help spread awareness and get me back into shape (Win Win)

Niall Reck, Married with 2 kids, designer / owner at Graphedia, I am 36,  6ft 1, I weigh 105 kg and have a waist of  38”.  I know this sounds dreamy but it is far from it. To sum up my fitness level: Badly out of shape, supporting man boobs and a belly like Buddha.

When it comes to exercise I need a goal to keep me motivated, I have been noticing my fitness slipping away lately and too many bad habits creeping in.  Speaking with John O’ Leary about this years event and seeing I needed to get up off my butt the challenge was set and as Alan Maher said if all else fails a lot of people would pay to see me puking up at the finishing line.

I would have been fairly fit over the years, having done martial arts when I  was younger.  Work and family life took priority over the past couple of years and this is where a few bad habits have kicked in, also the added bonus of injuries playing football with eagerly unfit men I have torn almost every ligament in my right ankle and ripped most of the ligaments in my shoulder.

Bad Habits:

  • Overeating
  • The temptation of biscuits, crisps and sweets
  • Not exercising lately
  • Too much TV, curse you BBC 2 for creating hours of enjoyable TV from 6 to 9, from top food programs to dance programs.  And of course ITV 4 from 9 pm with endless hours of Clint Eastwood movies and Escape from New York too, how could i leave it.

Goals: 

  • Run the Hope and Dream 10
  • Raise a load of money for the Hope Clinic and Share a Dream, 2 great causes that do fabulous work which have helped and touched everyone in some way
  • Encourage a load of Wexford people to take part
  • Get my fitness back, I’m out of shape badly
  • Not necessarily lose weight but to decrease my fat and get more muscle in there.

To reach my goal of fitness this gives me 4 months to get in shape, seeing I cannot run for a while as my ankles are still healing this will involve a lot of core work and fitness stamina training.  So the schedule is 3 days a week in Total Fitness Systems, consisting of Kettle bell training on Mondays, Fitness Training on Wednesdays and Boxing Fitness on Thursdays.   I have also roped my good friend Shane Carroll into running the race with me in March so we will be Cycling our bikes every Saturday morning.  In two months time I plan on getting on the road and running, that should be fun.

So set your Rocky theme tune and lets see how this goes,  I’m really looking forward to it from a personal point of view and to see how much money I can raise for these two great causes

– See more at: http://www.hopeanddream10.com/2012/12/10/run-fat-boy-run/#sthash.JtRkAzhb.dpuf

The Minister for Enterprise, Trade & Employment has made regulations to implement the EU “Disclosure Directive”. The Regulations will extend the requirements to the disclosure of a company’s particulars on its letterheads and order forms to electronic communications and websites with effect from 1 April 2007.

Failure to display the requisite information on business letters, electronic communications and websites will constitute a criminal offence subject to a maximum fine of €2,000 and companies should take immediate steps to ensure they are compliant with the Regulations by 1 April 2007.

All Companies in Ireland will have to display their company registration information, on their website and all emails. Companies are required to display the following:
Company Registration Name
Registration Office
Company Registration Number