The owner of a Co Monaghan gift shop has been contacted by TikTok after a video she uploaded to the platform gained over 900,000 views.
Helen Drumm, owner of Sound Quality Gifts, a store in Co Monaghan that specializes in personalized gifts, was invited by TikTok to join a course for creators to expand their reach globally after one of her recent videos about a night out with her staff to the movie Barbie gained over 900,000 views.
Ms Drumm posts impromptu, off-script videos showing her singing and dancing with customers and staff in her store.
“I really interact very well with my customers. You have to engage,” she told the Irish News.
Her first big hit on TikTok was a Mother’s Day-themed video. “I just happened to put it out before Mother’s Day and it went viral,” said Drumm.
Ms Drumm started putting videos on TikTok with some encouragement from her children.
She said: “I watched my children using Tiktok and Youtube and my son Jack came up to me and suggested I start doing Tiktoks.”
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After 38 years in business, Ms Drumm still vividly recalls the humble beginnings of her Monaghan gift shop.
“I started the store on my own with absolutely nothing,” she said. “I had just come up with the idea that I love music and therefore I went into the music business selling at that stage, it was LPs, CD and cassette.”
When the music landscape shifted to digital downloads, she had to pivot her business model.
“We had to look for something new and we had to find something, a new product to sell to retail. We went into personalizing gifts and selling gifts off the counter.”
Although the viral videos have brought more customers to her store, she said growing the business isn’t her main priority.
“I have been asked to franchise out my shop. It’s not something I would be interested in because, like I said, it’s not all about the money,” she explained.
“We need, as retailers, to be more personal, to make it worthwhile for the customer to want to come in.”
When asked about why she mentions Monaghan in all her videos she said: “I have been born and raised in Monaghan. It is extremely important to me. I have a lot of people from around the world that make contact with me and that want to engage in what I’m doing and that is why I mention it.”