THIS week’s High Flyer is Niamh Taylor, managing director of Belfast-based digital marketing agency, Digital 24.
What was your first job?
I began my career as assistant marketing manager for Bedeck working with a host of brands including Jeff Banks and Cosmopolitan and big retailers House of Fraser and Debenhams.
What qualifications do you have?
I went to Queen’s University Belfast where I studied Business Management and Economics. I’ve been working in digital marketing since before there was a qualification for it, but in 2009 I carried out the Chartered Institute of Marketing’s first industry qualification in Northern Ireland – the Diploma in Digital Marketing.
What do you attribute your success to?
I 100 per cent believe it is the 80-hour, seven-day working weeks. I’ll be honest, it hasn’t been easy and I have suffered from working wife guilt. But, this is genuinely what was necessary, because by working like this for three and a half years I have been able to allow Digital 24 to enjoy significant growth.
How would you describe yourself to someone who’d never met you?
I am an award-winning digital marketer with over 20 years’ experience. I have a diverse skill set and deep knowledge of digital marketing strategy. I am one of those people who loves the creative-strategic side of things as much as data analytics, and I am just as comfortable building a big picture digital strategy as getting down into the nitty gritty of optimising individual marketing channels. I am very much a driven leader in the Northern Ireland digital marketing scene and never give up trying.
Who do you look up to in business?
I look up to empowered women, empowering other women in business. I get so much energy from that. It would be so easy to go low, instead of going high [thanks, Michelle Obama], but the intelligent stuff happens when women support women. I look up to women knowing their worth and commanding fees that reflect this.
How do you get the best out of people who work for you?
I give them autonomy. I push people to believe that they can accomplish whatever they set their mind to.
If you could change one thing about doing business in Northern Ireland, what would it be?
Northern Ireland businesses are simply lagging behind the rest of the UK and Ireland when it comes to digital marketing. Boardroom-level executives lack a proper understanding of digital marketing and its capabilities which is where the problem lies.
What website or app could you not do without?
My park mobile app. I never have any money on me and most times I forget to bring my wallet with me to meetings.
What was the last book you read?
Sophie Kinsella ‘I owe you’. My husband bought it for me when we went to the Maldives at mid-term in February as he wanted me to switch off. It worked – I did get to switch off and read light-hearted humour.
What car do you drive?
Range Rover Evoque – it was my dream car and I got it a year and a half ago.
Tell us something interesting about yourself?
People always find it interesting that my first cousin is Andrew Scott – the Irish actor. He most recently was the priest in Fleabag and has previously played lead roles in James Bond – Spectre and was Moriarty in Sherlock.
What’s your greatest passion outside work and family?
Travelling. I was fortunate to travel around the world when I was 29. I worked in my aunt’s travel agency from I was 14 until 21 and I just loved it. It gave me such a passion for seeing other countries and experiencing new cultures.