Mark Dineen winner of Suit Factor 2


In 2010, in a competition associated with Tom Murphy Menswear Derek O’ Rourke was crowned winner of the Suit Factor and voted by the people of Ireland to be Ireland’s Best Dressed Man in a Suit. Amid a blaze of media madness and social media frenzy Derek picked up a cool prize of 2500 Euro worth of free clothing from Tom Murphy Menswear. Roll on a few years and due to popular demand the quest is on again to find Ireland’s Best Dressed Man in a Suit.The prize this time is 3000 Euro worth of free Suits,Accessories and Casual Wear from our store.

The competition was launched in late May and to date we have already recieved about 100 entries and the expectation is that once the voting gets under way that number will probably double within the first few days..Unfortunately there will only be 30 or so picked to go forward for the public vote which will take place on a specially created suit factor tab on our website.Each competitor will have their picture appearing on the page and underneath there will be a button for people to vote on.Needless to say there will only be one vote allowed per person.Anyone who followed the progress of the original Suit Factor will remember the great fun and craic that was had when the voting actually did get underway.The drama that eventually unfolded on the final day of voting could not have been greater as the two leading competitors Stephen O Leary and Derek O Rourke were tied on 2500 votes each going into the last few minutes of the contest.The tension was everywhere and the sheer numbers visiting the website caused it to crash as it approached midnight.

The prize on offer this time is even better than the last.3000 euro worth of fine mens clothing awaits the winner of  Suit Factor 2 and the coveted title of Irelands best dressed man in a suit.According to Tom the prize has to be a big one in order to attract the contestants and to persuade people to enter

“Anybody who enters has to network cleverly and get all their friends and family to vote so there has to be an amount of work put in if they are serious about winning the prize.The benefits to our business that come about from the exposure of our name to the contestants and the voting public make it worthwhile to give away such a good prize.The potential virality of the contest helps our name to get out there too”

The 3000 Euro giveaway is not the only cost to Tom’s business.There has been a lot of work put into the creation of the bespoke application that collects the entries and facilitates the voting process.As well as that there has been a facebook advertising campaign and a flyer and leaflet drop aimed at increasing awareness of the campaign.As Tom explains traditional advertising and marketing has lost some of its’ appeal because it is not measurable or quantifiable and there is an increasing need to think outside the box to get the message out to martket.

“Advertising in a newspaper or on radio is a doomed practice nowadays unless a very favourable rate can be procured.There is also no way of knowing if a campaign has been succesful or not.Social media campaigns have the advantage of being accountable and being open to measurement.For example if we spend money on a facebook advertising campaign we can see how many new fans we have attracted and we can put an approximate value on what each fan is worth.I see this as very imortant in marketing,i.e the ability to hold a campaign accountable and to be able to put a value on what it is worth to the business.

The original  idea for the Suit Factor came from Tom and with the help of James Northridge the store’s web developer ,the concept was put together as a photo contest that achieved virality through different social media such as facebook and twitter.Indeed the tables have kind of turned for James who got married himself very recently and two of his groomsmen Alan Drummy and Anthony Quinlan are among this years contestants.James is pictured here a few days prior to his wedding flanked by the two handsome hunks that are expected to feature prominently in this years competition.

Derek O Rourke-Suit Factor winner

Derek O Rourke-Suit Factor winner

James our web developer and Anthony Quinlan a contestant

James our web developer and Anthony Quinlan a contestant

Evening Wear CollectionsEvening Wear CollectionsIt is that time of year again when school leavers start arriving into the store in their droves as they prepare for the biggest night out of their lives to date.For the male species choosing a debs suit to wear on the night has become almost as important as choosing a prospective partner to accompany him.At least with a partner there are only three options and they are

1-Ask the Missus which is the boring option as she will probably curtail your wilder inclinations and basically spoil your night

2-Ask a friend who might be happy to have a free night out on the lash

3-Ask someone you have really fancied for ages but risk spending the night wondering whether she is there because she is too polite to say no or if she is actually into you too.This can be a complete head wreck and I can say that from personal experience.

{A word of warning on who you bring to your debs lads!Do not be stupid enough to bring one of the teachers’ daughters as you will be slagging cannon fodder for the forseeable future

I asked the lads in the Tom Murphys Debs department if they have any advice for ye all when it comes to picking out debs suits for the big night and here is what they came up with

1-If you are strapped for cash hire a suit.The average cost is around 65 euro and for this you get a suit,shirt and tie.However the choice is limited and you will not get the sort of choice you would if you were purchasing

2-The growing and almost universal trend is to buy your debs suit.There is a huge choice available and right now the most popular coloursare silver grey and the ever popular black

3-The days of the tuxedo,shirt and bow are numbered.Lads now tend to go for a plain suit without the satin lapels of a tux and team it up with a skinny tie and drop collar shirt rather than the wing collared variety.

4-There is still a big percentage of students opting for a waistcoat and tie combination that match the girls dress.If for example the girl is wearing a purple dress then the boy will match his accessories with hers.Sometimes it is a good idea to rent the waistcoat even if you are buying the suit as you might never wear it again.

Tom Murphys menswear have teamed up with local Cork based photographer John Roche to offer a 360 degree virtual tour on google of the interior of the building. In the tour viewers walk into what seems like a 3 D view of the building’s interior. As Mr. Roche puts it,it is a far more interactive experience then watching a video with the viewers controlling where they want to go in the premises using a series of images that are drawn together using software provided by google. Tom Murphys are following in the footsteps of other Cork businesses that were first to feature this new technology. They include le Chateau, LongValley, Market Lane and Currans Resteraunt. Tom himself is very excited about the virtual tour of the business that will now be visible by general search on google.

‘We intend to use this to entice shoppers from outside Cork to visit our store and it will be an important marketing tool as it will give people who were never in our shop an idea of what we are about.Some local people who have not shopped with us before have no idea about the huge range of products we stock and the different areas and departments within the store. The shop can look quite small from the outside but the virtual tour will show that it is actually a very large space on the inside and full of charm and character.We would be hoping that the customer will get a “feel” for the store before walking through the doors.

Of course Tom Murphys have always tried to show what they are about through the meduim of online video, blogs, podcasts etc. but this is something that has made Tom more excited than anything else, to date.
‘We know from experience that a purchase decision is made a lot easier if pictues and details of the product can be shared with a friend or family member”.

The Starting Point of the Google Tour

The Starting Point of the Google Tour

Another way that Tom Murphys tries to integrate technology into the fashion game are through the  use of QR codes.A practical example of how they are utilised is taken up by Tom.

“In our wedding department tradionally the bride might come in and see a suit she likes and she then rushes home to tell the fiance she has found the perfect suit only to discover she has completely forgotten if it was tails or 3/4’s, black or grey,slimline or classic and what waistcoat it was accessorised with and so on. Hey Presto, the QR code scan can help you not forget, you can scan it and the picture of the suit and all the relevent details will save on to your phone and will make life a whole lot easier.The use of such codes in conjunction with the mobile hand held device is unbelievably helpful for our type of market where there is a delayed purchase decision and often a tendency to seek opinions and approval from others before the final call is made”.

According to Tom the use of QR codes will become more and more popular and soon they will be expected to be omnipresent in the retail landscape. For now however they are just being used by the more innovative retailers but that may soon be about to change

John Roche Google Tours Cork

John Roche Google Tours Cork