MONAGHAN BIDS FOR BIG BUSINESS BOOST!

24 September 2015 No Comments by The Northern Standard

PETER HUGHES

A number of potential strategies to boost trade in Monaghan Town and promote its retail attractions over a wider catchment area were unveiled at Monday’s meeting of the Monaghan Municipal District by the new town centre co-ordinator for the county capital, Trevor Connolly.

Mr Connolly said plans were in train to put together a ‘town team’ of relevant stakeholders, one of whose objectives would be the formulation of a strategy to achieve “purple flag” status for Monaghan Town, an accreditation that would open up the potentially lucrative market to the town of becoming a major conference venue.

The recently appointed co-ordinator was formally introduced to the meeting by Municipal District Cathaoirleach Robbie Gallagher, who congratulated him on both his new post and his recent marriage.

At the outset of his presentation Mr Connolly outlined his academic qualifications in business finance and marketing, and in urban planning development and urban regeneration. He told the members that he had worked in retail in Monaghan and for an international development company in the UK.

Among the objectives he pinpointed for his new role were the increase of shopper footfall in the town and a reduction in the number of vacant premises. He said he had spoken to the town centre managers in Sligo and Letterkenny, met with the organisers of the forthcoming Taste of Monaghan event and was involved with the town’s Hallowe’en Bats Festival Committee.

Mr Connolly said he had met with plenty of the businesspeople and retailers in the town and had discussed with them possible means of promoting Monaghan outside of the county. He was also working with a number of community groups, and it was great to see the positive atmosphere within the town – he hoped he would be able to augment and combine their work for the promotion of the town.

The co-ordinator detailed discussions he had held with Clearwater Promotion, which was a Northern Ireland advertising agency specialising in outdoor promotion. They had explored possibilities for billboard advertising in different locations in the North which would be geared to attracting a different demographic to Monaghan, and highlighting the currently advantageous Sterling exchange rates.

Referring to the potential of advertising on phone boxes and bus shelters and the use of digital display marketing, Mr Connolly said that these approaches could be used to target key areas in the North that were within commuter distance of Monaghan.

He also advocated the use of footfall counters in the town, pointing out that they were used in Sligo during such events as the annual fleadh and ….

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