Earlier this year, I heard Jason Dorsey speak at a conference, and I recently stumbled across a copy of his TEDx Houston talk. While you might be hesitant to watch another presentation about Millennials or the generations that follow, his insights are unique, and it’s well worth 18 minutes of your day.
There are five main points that stuck with me months after seeing him speak because they have huge implications for people who work in marketing, in my opinion:
- The idea that “technology is only new if you remember the way it was before” means that we have to be honest with ourselves (and our clients) about how truly innovative a product or service is. If our children only remember phone calls where you can see the person you’re talking to, at some point that becomes the norm and not an exceptional feature that sets your product apart.
- “Technology IS the experience” is true for many generations. It’s not an optional enhancement. Don’t most of us expect a website to load quickly, be easy to view on a smart phone and be easy to find in a search engine? Technology is part of almost every stage of our decision-making process, so digital marketing offers huge opportunities to simplify and improve the customer journey.
- As older generations begin to look more like iGen, profiles of demographic segments will change rapidly. It will be vital that our research on their likes, interests, media habits, etc. is up-to-date to ensure accuracy. Data from even just a year or two ago will become obsolete.
- Historic events like September 11th shape and unite a generation more than birth years. It makes me wonder how these events influence – even subtly – how we feel about certain colors, symbols, etc. and how that impacts the success of brands among different generations. As marketers who are often trying to connect with a specific target audience, we have to have context for their history.
- iGen “does not see diversity unless it’s absent”? Yes, yes, yes. So often this desire to reflect diversity in marketing, however, translates to a bad stock photo with lots of different ethnicities. How do we showcase diversity in marketing in a more authentic way