Page 45 - MarketTimesJune2014
P. 45

  Market Times • June 2014
AGM REPORT
Question Time for the markets industry
   THERE was no David Dimbleby. But a panel of market experts, chaired by NMTF President Michael Nicholson, did their best to answer questions from NMTF members in a version of TV’s Question Time staged following
the AGM.
The panel comprised NMTF
Chief Executive Joe Harrison, private market operator Dermot McGillicuddy, social media expert Nike Morris, and council business development officer Sharon Fairweather.
Questions ranged from refund policies to how best to promote markets and exploit social media.
On refund policies, Sharon Fairweather, who works on developing Bury St Edmunds market, said market traders had to compete with the likes of Amazon who offered refunds if customers changed their mind.
On how best to promote markets, she said the key was to promote market shopping as a great experience.
Nike Morris, who runs a company developing websites and social media, said it was important to build a brand around the market shopping experience. “Social media is a fantastic way to push markets because it is all about personality and markets have
Joe Harrison
plenty of personality.”
Dermot McGillicuddy, who runs
LSD Promotions, said the best way to promote market shopping was to improve markets themselves, which had to be a joint effort by traders and operators.
Asked why traders should care about social media, Nike said that if Facebook was a country it would be the third largest in the world. Facebook offered traders direct access to their customers. They could carry out surveys and offer deals on the networks.
Dermot said: “The human race is nosey and social media is the free newspaper for the world.”
Asked what one piece of advice they would give to new traders, each member of the panel had a different angle. Nike said they should think about their brand — really successful stalls were the ones that had a brand.
Michael Nicholson
Nike Morris
Sharon said they should get as much help and advice they could from the experts — their fellow traders.
Dermot said that product line was vital, and traders had to keep watching that what they were selling was what the public wanted. He also stressed the
Dermot McGillicuddy
Sharon Fairweather
importance of a good display and excellent customer service.
Joe Harrison said his one piece of advice would be — don’t set your aspirations too high. Establishing a good business could not be achieved over night and new traders needed grit and determination.
   Benevolent Fund — a helping hand in hard times
Llangefni’s Emyr Owen is Market Manager of the Year
LARGER than life character Emyr Owen has been rewarded for his efforts in rejuvenating Llangefni Market, on the island of Anglesey, by being named the NMTF’s Market Manager of the Year.
The award is made in memory of Dennis Williams, a Past President of the Federation who was a trader and also ran two markets in Wiltshire.
Right: Emyr Owen, NMTF’s Market Manager of the Year 2014
 THE NMTF Benevolent Fund continues to provide much needed financial support for traders who have fallen on hard times, June Draper, the committee Chairman, told the AGM.
Some traders felt too embarrassed to ask for help, she said.
But the committee could provide grants towards living expenses for traders in need, and it had a number of mobile scooters for members with mobility problems.
June appealed to members to contact the committee if they knew of a deserving case. And she
praised the efforts of Martin Ingledew, a trader from Middlesbrough, who has raised many hundreds of pounds for the fund over the years through sponsorship for completing the Great North Run.
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