Addicted to Twitter? You should be, says Paddy Power’s Micheal Nagle.

Working with the infamous betting agency on all kinds of devilment, Micheal Nagle of Paddy Power talks to Social Media Summit about video content, Donald Trump, and a serious Twitter addiction.


To start, can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

I’ve been with Paddy Power for seven years, one of the original social media employees. I’ve helped define the Paddy Power social media tone of voice from the get go, growing our audience to 1.6 million on Facebook, 630,000 on Twitter, 90,000 on Instagram, and an increasing Snapchat following.

How did you get into your career?

When I interviewed for a marketing position at Paddy Power I had 1200 followers at a time when nobody was really using Twitter, at least in Ireland, which impressed them enough to let me take charge of social media marketing as a part of my role. This was at the time when Paddy Power was changing its public image - moving from photo shoots with Georgia Salpa at Stephen’s Green to something more fun, bringing in a humorous tone of voice that I naturally fitted with. At the start it was just me running the accounts but it took off and grew to where it is now, with six of us on the Paddy Power social media team.

I had 1200 followers at a time when nobody was really using Twitter. 

What do you consider the greatest achievement in your work to date?

I’m really proud of where Paddy Power’s social media is today from where we started out. We’ve grown massively in terms of our audience reach and have a reputation for delivering some of the best social media content in the UK and Ireland. I’ve been to conferences in the UK where I’ll see a Paddy Power tweet on screen as an example of social media done right and will sit there nicely chuffed with myself because I wrote that tweet, I made that bit of content. 


How does Social Media support your work?

That’s kind of a funny question for me as I spend most of my day on social media. Most of my time is spent on Twitter looking for news, looking for new stories, looking for angles we can cover and have fun with. Everyday Donald Trump does something ridiculous which is great for people like us. I heard an interesting stat from Twitter when we went to meet with them recently: Super Bowl 50 last year was the busiest day on Twitter of all time - until November 9th at the end of the election when Donald Trump was announced as the next president. Every day since then has beaten the Twitter record. Donald Trump is propping up Twitter at the minute.

I’ll see a Paddy Power tweet on screen as an example of social media done right and will sit there nicely chuffed with myself because I wrote that tweet, I made that bit of content.

What is the one app you can’t live without? Personally and for your business!

Again, back to Twitter - I really got the bug early, it’s where I go to for all my news. The first thing I do when I wake up in the morning is go onto the app to see what’s going on in the world and it’s probably the last thing I do before I go to sleep - not that I’d tell my wife that…

What is the one piece of Social Media advice you would give to businesses?

The one thing I’ve said from the beginning has been to set your stall out as to what your personality and tone of voice is going to be on social media, define that, write it down as your mission statement, put a sign with it up on your wall, and stick to it. A lot of people get confused about their tone of voice and what they’re trying to achieve. At Paddy Power we knew from the start who we were and what we wanted to do and have stuck by that. I’ve found a lot of brands, particularly in the betting industry, trying to use our style but lack the consistency - this just confuses people as to what the core brand message is.


What do you think is the next big thing in Social Media? What will you be focusing on in the Social Media landscape this year?

The two areas where we’re investing a lot of time and money into at the moment are video and Snapchat. Snapchat has grown hugely, worth I don’t know how many billion at their recent IPO and we feel it’s going to continue to grow. We worked with them to create a Snapchat filter for Paddy’s Day in the UK and Ireland. People think it’s just for teenagers sending pictures of their private parts but it’s actually the 25-34 year old demographic that’s the fastest growing age group on Snapchat. Lots of my friends are using Snapchat now where they would previously have used Facebook. Facebook is where they go to look at baby pictures and stuff like that but Snapchat is where they go to send messages to each other and watch funny videos. That area needs good video content so we hired a social video producer last year and my team, besides managing Facebook, Twitter, and the rest of the social platforms, spend a lot of their time scripting video ideas, coming up with daily content and video campaigns. Then Facebook’s algorithm obviously lends itself to video so we drive lots of video through our Facebook page and it performs a lot better than most of the text/image based content we use.

What can the attendees of this year’s Social Media Summit look forward to hearing from you?

I’m hoping to bring a bit of fun. I’m going to be talking about mischief and marketing. Mischief is the very essence of the Paddy Power brand’s DNA; from day one we’ve been stirring controversy, taking bets on the Oscar Pistorius trial or OJ Simpson way back in the day. I’d like to think we’ve brought that sense of mischief into our social media tone of voice. I’m going to be talking about how we create our content, bringing in some case studies of things that worked well for us and things that didn’t.

What are you most looking forward to at the Social Media Summit this year?

I’m looking forward to speaking to the people that work in the industry, talking to them about what works for them, what doesn’t work, what social media platforms are they using, what they think is the next big thing. I’m looking forward to hearing the different speakers and hoping to gleam some of their insight and bring it back to use at Paddy Power.

Check out Paddy Power’s latest stunt where Paddy teams up with Ruby Walsh to take revenge on a Twitter troll…


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