Monday, March 26, 2007

Youth Marketing Conference

Well, it looked realy cool - had a good logo, nice vibe, but very expensive. The conference is not quite living up to its promise - same old paper-thing bag - limited refreshments, and, maybe to seem cool, sour patch kids as a snack. Or is that just to be ironic? Some good people and I ALWAYS learn something but this year everyone seems to be talking about the same things. Except here, social networks have been shortened to "socnets" and Google doesn't get mentioned in any presentations. At the end of the day, it circles back to user generated content, ultra customization, and actually, social responsibility.

The good news in all of this is that marketers are realizing that causes can really help support a brand - that young people will value cause associations and it will effect choice. I saw the pink Campbell's soup label up on screen, heard (again) about Relay for Life in SL, and the Boy Scouts of America presented research. This "millenial generation", which seems to be the phrase winning out here, is very brand conscious and they are willing to pay more for what they want.

As a parent I want to croak.

As a nonprofit employee, I see enormous opportunity with this segment. More or less untapped. As long as we make it fun and add a customizable experience. In fact, that dovetails nicely into the basis for the Skoll Foundation for instance. This idea of "social entrepreneurs". Kids can come up with better ways of fundraising, so why don't we just let them go. Do it whatever way they know how and just bring it back when you're done. Maybe there's an Eppybird out there for us, but are we stiffling the geyser?

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