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IT WAS a night to remember for popular department store Wardens of Newtownards when they won the prestigious Best Use of TikTok in Business award recently.

The family-run department store, that has been operating since 1877, won the coveted award at the 2022 Northern Ireland Social Media Awards. Thanks to their catchy video-clips the High Street based company and its staff became overnight social media sensations earlier this year as they gained 167,000 TikTok followers in just a few days.

In what has been an incredible year for Wardens, this is just their latest awards success, following on from their two High Street Heroes NI awards they secured for Overall Independent Retailer and Best Homeware Retailer.

Jonathan Sloan, Wardens staff member and the familiar face of many of their social media clips, was thrilled by their success saying: “It was very good to win the award, it gets our name out there with a younger generation and it makes Wardens cool.” Not to be missed is Jonathan’s recent video clip, when he gets inside a winter log basket and rolls across the floor. “We just thought I should get in the log basket, it is a bit of fun. People are facing  “ tough times and it shows we are all human.” Congratulating Wardens on their success were NI Social Media Awards founders Niamh Taylor, managing director of Digital 24 and Caroline O’Neill business coach and social media consultant of Digg For Success and Digg Mam.

In a joint statement they said: “We are delighted to celebrate everything that is good about social media which has played a huge part over the last two years in all of our personal and professional lives. “It has helped get us through some very dark days and has also been the most amazing tool during this challenging time to help businesses grow. “Over 400 entries were received and our judges were blown away by every single one of them.

Congratulations to Wardens in Newtownards on winning the Best Use of TikTok in Business.” Speaking on behalf of the judges, Oonagh O’Hagan, managing director of Meaghers Pharmacy Group said: “The quality of the entries reflected the sheer hard work businesses, organisations and individuals across Northern Ireland are putting into their social media platforms. “It is clear that local businesses are being very strategic in their plans and many are exceeding their targeted goals.

Meanwhile, the content that is being created is engaging audiences and capturing the hearts and minds of people across the platforms. Congratulations to all of our finalists and winners and keep up the amazing work.”

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