IIBN asked Bobby in an interview to give Newsletter readers an insight into Go Wild Magazines.
Bobby revealed that Go Wild Magazines are high quality A4 glossy tourism magazines for 5 tourism regions in Ireland and in March 2020 one tourism region in Northern Ireland. We are also launching our first UK mainland title in May with Go Wild Cornwall.
You can visit the Go Wild Magazines website here www.gowildmagazine.com
IIBN went on to ask how did you get the idea/ concept for the business?
The idea stemmed from Fáilte Ireland announcing the development of the Wild Atlantic Way 5 years ago and I thought that there had to be a magazine opportunity for the route.
Give a brief account of your education background.
Educated in Waterford at Waterpark College, no third level education as it wasn’t really a choice then.!!!!!!! Showing my age here!!!
Did you always know/ever think you would become an entrepreneur when you were younger? No, initially I was happy working and developing the knowledge to one day start my own venture.
Is entrepreneurship a common trait in your family?
Yes, I suppose it is, both my sister Valerie and my brother Brian are both self employed.
Did you have prior knowledge of the industry before setting up your company?
Yes, I worked as Sales Manager for the Limerick Leader for 5 years and had previously served there as a Sales Representative for 7 years some years earlier. I also worked for 2 years with Hopkins Communications as their Account Director in Limerick which gave me a great insight into Advertising agency life and the workings of same.
What was your previous work experience (if any)? Do you think this gave you an advantage when setting up your business?
As the magazines are totally reliant on advertising for profitability my experience in the Limerick Leader gave me a base of clients across Ireland to get me started.
How did you initially fund your business? (self-funded, government funding, etc)
A very small bank loan.
Looking back, would you have changed the method of funding you chose?
No. The loan was small enough to cope if the Go Wild magazine plan went wrong.
What difficulties, if any, did you encounter when securing funding?
The usual problems with Banks in Ireland. They certainly need to be more supportive of entrepreneurs and copy the system that works so well in the United States. The person who set up Mc Donald’s had several failures before becoming a worldwide success.
Did you encounter any financial difficulties in the first year of operation? If yes, what did you do to surpass them?
The first year is always difficult as you are giving out credit to advertisers and hoping that they will pay on time. Gladly, they did and 90% of our original advertisers five years ago are still with us today.
What characteristics do you feel benefited you most when starting your business?
Tenacity, Drive, sales ability, never quitting. Being very positive and believing that the glass is always half full.
To what do you attribute your company’s success/growth to?
Hard work and great clients who support our Go Wild vision to bring the best of Ireland to the world.
What is your opinion on the importance of a professional network for an entrepreneur?
Certainly, networking is vitally important as you never know who you will meet or what connections they can make for you.
Do you think entrepreneurship has changed in recent years?
Yes, its slowly being recognised by the younger generation as an opportunity to create their own vision, the success of the Collisson brothers from Limerick at such a young age is a huge testament to that.
Would you ever consider starting another company or involving yourself in new start-ups again? No, I am currently now focused on establishing & setting up Go Wild in mainland UK and we will have our first title in May with Go Wild Cornwall.
If you had one piece of advice for a new entrepreneur, what would it be? Don’t give up.
If you have a dream, follow it. If you work relentlessly towards your goal and stay focused you have a great chance today with so many options to promote your business.
Remember failure is just a lesson, get back up and start again.