Strategic Lead and Managing Director at Springboard, Susie Horgan, was recently invited to speak at the Social Innovation Fund Ireland #SEDFund Roadshow in Cork City Hall for International Women’s Day. Susie used her experience of advising organisations in the not-for-profit sector to provide insights into building your social enterprise.

Here are her top tips from the day:

Your reputation is everything.

Protect it and manage it. You need to ensure you are compliant, you have stringent governance and you are transparent.

It does take a lot of work but if you don’t invest time in this at an early stage, it will become an issue as you grow.

Know your brand mission and goals.

Write it down – Where will you be in 5 years? What do people say about your organisation when you leave the room? What do you want them to say?

We work with our clients during our Messaging Workshops to answer and debate all these questions. They are difficult to develop and write down, but in the end, these become your key messages and they will define the future of your brand story.

Know your audience.

Make sure you are speaking to your audience, on the right platform.

If you are targeting people locally, know your local media. If you’re targeting corporates – you should be on LinkedIn and networking at corporate events.

This includes social media – do one platform well, rather than four half-heartedly. Monitor your content and ensure that it has the right tone of voice for the people you want to attract. This can be hard to do if you leave posting to a last-minute panic. At Springboard, we draft content calendars for our clients that ensure our content is planned for and targeted to the right audiences.


Collaboration is key at the beginning, but it remains as important as you grow. Know and work with your network. Why not look for opportunities to do joint initiatives in which you can combine budgets and resources?

At the very least, cross-promote with others on your social platforms. There is a reason why many organisations credit their success to collaboration. It is because collaboration results in the possibility to leverage new audiences. Partnering with the right people can result in an opportunity to reach out to an engaged, trusting audience who want to know more about your product or service.

Champion your organisation.

Look for every relevant opportunity to promote your organisation. This means putting yourself forward too. Don’t be afraid to represent your organisation – you believe in what you are doing, and you need to educate others. Take opportunities to enter awards, speak at events, and pitch your story to media.


If you want to promote your company, but don’t know where to start, contact Susie today on:

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Susie founded Springboard in 2011, and has developed the business into a leading, director-led communications agency. She has worked for over 20 years in senior marketing and public relations roles.

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