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POSTED 18.2.2019

Returning emigrants get back to business in Ireland

The successful media launch of this year’s Back for Business entrepreneur mentoring programme was helped by past participants telling their stories.

The initiative, which is funded by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, helps returning emigrants start and develop businesses in Ireland.

Launched by Minister of State for the Diaspora and International Development Ciarán Cannon, the programme runs over six months from this month (February) to July 2019.

StoryLab worked with Back for Business to help the programme in its call for new participants ahead of its January 25 deadline.

And by telling the stories of returning emigrants who had already gone through the programme, we were able to grab the attention of national media across the board.

Presenting a series of interesting stories that were relatable to each region was also the key to unlocking regional coverage across the country.

Our campaign resulted in 62 pieces of coverage with estimated coverage views of 200,000. It reached an online readership of 46.6 million and resulted in 242 social shares.

One piece of coverage in The Irish Times focussed on stories from Adam Kennedy-Ripon who lives in Prague but is about to relocate to Ireland with his business Surfstr; Eilín O’Caroll, a funds consultant who returned from London to bring an old 17th century house back to life and Lisa Caffrey who brought the idea of a new high-end jewellery business from Saudi Arabia to Louth.

The Sunday Independent covered a news story from past participant Aidan Mehigan who is this month launching a new Irish whiskey brand while the Sunday Times focussed on a number of participants to tell the wider story of the initiative.

Telling the stories of such diverse businesses and their creators is the core of what we do at StoryLab every day. As former journalists, we can identify the stories that other journalists want to write about and the information they need to hit the mark.