Tell us what your business does?
Studio Lugh is a specialised and dedicated product photography studio producing ready to publish ‘cut-out’ photos for eCommerce merchants.
Where did the idea for your business come from?
I already have experience in the domain gained abroad. The Irish market is open and growing quickly. I needed to differentiate myself from all the other photographers who mostly do weddings and portraits and identified the eCommerce sector as having great potential.
Have you always wanted to run your own business?
Yes. I have been working freelance for 20 years now, firstly as an assistant to world famous photographers, then on my own.
What planning did you do before you started up?
I attended a (free) start-your-own-business course organised by Longford County Enterprise Board. This was very educational and motivating.
Which entrepreneurs do you admire?
Richard Branson, Jacques-Antoine Granjon (vent-privée.com).
What challenges have you faced & how have you overcome them?
Marketing was the biggest challenge. I initially ran adverts and wrote a business profile advertorial for the local newspaper. I only got requests for portrait photography from that! The Twitter network #irishbizparty really jump-started my business, the results are phenomenal.
How have you promoted your business?
Google, Golden Pages, the Longford Leader and of course, Twitter. Google+ is also quite helpful: it put me on the map!
Are you optimistic about 2014?
Very. The economy seems to be improving somewhat: employment and spending are increasing. Irish eCommerce is growing 20% year-on-year and should be worth approximately €5bn this year.
What advice would you give to budding entrepreneurs?
Steel your nerves, don’t listen to naysayers!