Fundraising for refugees Providing marketing advice to SMEs Fundraising in aid of Barnardo’s work with refugees in Northern Ireland
Following a successful Digital DNA, we're busy planning our next event.
No date or location has been set as yet, but we will keep this page and our social channels updated as things unfold.
Until we launch that event, you can still donate to Barnardo's via Just Giving.
Make a donation
If you don’t need or want a clinic with one of the advisers but want to support Barnardo’s, you can donate directly to the Independent Guardian Team in Northern Ireland via this Just Giving page .
As the name suggests, Friends Of isn't just Andi from Eximo Marketing. He's part of the team, but will be joined by a team of other expert advisers - Friends - to help deliver the clinic.
We set the bar high for our advisers. They must be experienced industry professionals, with a track record of success in their specialised field. And they're not there to sell to you either. The aim is to bring you heavyweight professional advice that should cost hundreds of pounds, for a small donation to charity. So you get great advice, Barnardo's gets additional funding and our team get to give something back to the local business community.
So who are the advisers? We've got a short video featuring a few of them and bios for the whole team below.
Emma Burdett - Social Media Marketing
Emma is currently the Web & Digital Marketing Manager with Visit Belfast and has over 10 years of experience in digital marketing, working in the beauty, tourism and e-commerce industries. Emma can help you with campaign planning, strategy development, content ideas and social media advertising. Find Emma on LinkedIn.
Simon Harper - Website Marketing
Simon is a Solopreneur, Freelance WordPress Ninja, Graphic Guru & owner of SRH Design, based in Bangor. He's been designing & building websites since 1999 and freelancing since 2009, working with clients throughout the UK & Ireland. He helps businesses & individuals get online, market their product or service to a wide audience & grow their brand. Find Simon on LinkedIn.
Peter Craven - Video Marketing
Peter is Founder & Creative Director at BlueSky Video Marketing, a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Marketing and Education Ambassador on the Board of the Chartered Institute of Marketing in Ireland. He has been involved with video marketing since 2008 and since BlueSky Video Marketing was formed in June 2017 has made over 250 videos for more than 50 customers in Northern Ireland, the Republic of Ireland, England and Scotland. Find Peter on LinkedIn.
Leanne Gannon - Social Media and Content
Leanne Gannon from She & Co is an expert in content creation, social media and influencer marketing. Based in Belfast, she works with clients across Ireland to produce campaigns that impact the bottom line. Find Leanne on LinkedIn.
Sean Greer - Brand and Design
Sean is the owner and designer at Sean Greer Design. He specialises in brand identities built on clear, intelligent creative thinking. Sean helps clients develop and tell their story through thoughtful, engaging design that connects with their audience. Our work results in websites, packaging and print for clients all sectors. Find Sean on LinkedIn.
Dani McFerran - Brand and Design
Dani is a lively, passionate and experienced creative innovator currently based in Belfast as Founder and Creative Director to her design consultancy Done and Dusted Design. With over 16 years international experience in branding, product design and UX/UI, Dani’s has successfully made a difference for many businesses. Connect with her on LinkedIn.
Gil David - Facebook, Messenger & Instagram ads
Gil has spent over 13 years experince in sales, marketing and business management and has been focused Facebook, Inc. advertising exclusively in the last four years with his company Run DMG. He has worked across a number of industries in the UK and US with clients' budgets ranging from a few hundred pounds a month to £100k+. Find Gil on LinkedIn.
Andi Jarvis - Strategy
Andi is the Strategy Director at Eximo Marketing and originally founded Wifi Refugees, which has evolved into Friends Of. Andi focuses on marketing strategy, taking a commercial approach to marketing issues and solving the key issues that are preventing businesses from growing. Find Andi on LinkedIn.
Marc Ellison - Social Media and Social Ads
Marc is the owner of Bard Online. He provides online solutions to businesses, helping them to tell their brand story with a focus on social media marketing, content creation, analysis and optimisation. With over a decade's experience in the media as a sports journalist and editor in his native New Zealand, Marc’s passion for telling meaningful and engaging stories, tracking analytics and turning data into useful insights is in demand in the UK, Indonesia, Australia and New Zealand. You can find him on LinkedIn here.
Ryan Kyle - B2B Marketing
Ryan is a B2B marketing specialist with over 10 years' experience in marketing and sales, alongside a BSc Hons in Advertising. Inbound marketing and Content Strategy are at the core of his expertise - and he is passionate about sharing this enthusiasm with others. Ryan recently joined axial3D, to lead the marketing function, having previously worked at Automated Intelligence and Tesco Mobile. Find Ryan on LinkedIn.
Laura Wilson - Operations
Laura is another one of the team that makes sure Friends Of stays on track. When not working full time as a technology delivery consultant for Accenture, Laura keeps our planning, meetings and organisation running in military fashion... just with more fun! Find Laura on LinkedIn.
Emma Graham - Operations
Friends Of doesn't just happen by accident. Emma is one of the team of three that keeps the wheels turning and ensures a smooth delivery of events.
She is a freelance Marketing and Communications Consultant, with over 20 years of experience in various roles. She has worked for BT, Age UK, Smarts and Case Corporation. Emma currently services retained clients as well as variety of ad hoc project work, inc event management, social media, stakeholder engagement, internal & external comms, dissemination, sponsorships and project management. As well as Eximo & Friends, she also volunteers for Marie Curie, Barnardo’s, Simon Community and previously for Positive Life NI, National Trust and Cinemagic. Find Emma on LinkedIn.
The Story So Far
Friends Of started life as Wifi Refugees. It was set up by Andi Jarvis to provide free marketing advice to SMEs in exchange for a donation to a local refugee charity. It was originally held in coffee shops in Bangor, before spreading to other parts of Northern Ireland as more people became involved in the concept.
Over the last 18 months the concept has morphed into something still the same but slightly different! We've said goodbye to coffee shops and hello to events. "Friends Of" isn't just a name, it's a descriptor of how the event works - no longer just one expert for a few hours, but a host of experts in one place at the same time. We've got a new look, so the Wifi Human has been replaced by the Friends Of colour blocks.
We’ve partnered with Ulster Bank to provide clinics in their Accelerator Hub and Digital DNA, Belfast’s biggest digital technology event. And most importantly, we’re now partnered with Barnardo’s, providing funding directly to their work in Northern Ireland to help support the Independent Guardian Team.
There To Support You
We know that growing a business can be difficult and expensive. Marketing can be the difference between success and failure in a small business, but finding the right advice can be difficult and paying for it an even bigger challenge.
That's where Friends Of comes in.
We bring a group of marketing experts, with diverse experience, to regular clinics where you can access industry-leading information for just the cost of a small donation to charity. All you have to do is pre-book a 30 minute appointment with one of the advisers and turn up ready to dive into your marketing problem.
At the end of your clinic, we ask that you leave a donation that will be used to help refugees settle in Northern Ireland. We're working with Barnardo's who are a key delivery partner for the government's programme to help the most vulnerable families flee war zones around the world. We suggest £20 for a 30 minute consultation, but the amount you leave is entirely up to you.
Find Out More
To be be the first hear when we launch dates of the new clinics, just fill in the form below.