Understanding Generation “D”
Know and be known
You don’t always have to know the destination, but it’s nice to know that there is one. And if you understand that, you’re on the road to understanding how to talk to Generation D.
The Millenials, the generation which came of age with the turn of the century, are a different sort. They’re not just the young people who barely remember a time without laptops and have no concept of a world without mobile phones; they include people who’ve made the leap, who plug into what they have now so they know what to plug into next. And it’s not just which device to plug into; it’s the next experience.
Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Flickr, YouTube and their brothers enable anyone to publish, to speak, to get famous, to get rich, to reach out and to be reached. You can be popular. You can be known. You can put your work, your opinions, your ideas on display and get feedback. Instant feedback. And you can filter that feedback, and figure out ways to better yourself and your content and move forward.
Your venture succeeds with Generation D because they can tell you that you’re giving them what they want – or not. The interaction between your messaging and your targets makes your message better, and it can help you get there in a hurry.
This generation wants to BELONG. They strengthen existing bonds of friendship with advanced sharing. They trade information, pictures, experiences and emotions in new ways . But it doesn’t stop there. They can build entirely new bonds and new fraternal networks.
And remember… those targets WANT TO BE HEARD. They want to interact with you because they know you’re listening. If they think you’re not paying attention to them they’ll move on, and you’ve failed.
By utilizing media with which they WANT to interact, rather than the media they are TOLD to use, Generation D is also exerting a certain amount of control. “You want to talk to me? Here’s how to do it. I visit these sites, I use these outlets. Engage me.” The trick is to be multidimensional.
The Social Web has a wealth of communication channels, devices like mobile phones, iPads and laptops, which delivers blogs, sites, yelps, twitters and other virtual platforms. I can pontificate, I can entertain, I can educate. I can be popular, or at least try. I can listen. And I do want to listen. But you’d better know how to talk to me so that I WANT to listen.
To communicate effectively with Generation D, you need to pull the platforms together, to reach potential listeners in ways that let them pull in other listeners, to share messages with their micro-networks and the friends and family and extended peer groups they’ve built through social networking. By validating my message, he’s helping to SPREAD my message.
At Nervana, we have learned how to maximize the value of these interactions. Our solutions are designed to optimize outreach, to hit those touch points, to enhance and spread the message. It’s WHAT WE DO.