THE social media revolution is giving rise to a new generation of savvy web users who have a higher level of technical know-how and well-developed online BS detectors.
For corporate communicators, this is important to know. Brochure-ware websites and a tell-it-from-the-mountain approach to online communication isn’t working with this generation.
Which generation exactly? Well, if you’ve looked at the audience at any recent investor presentation or road show, you’ve probably noticed that the faces in the audience are getting decidedly more youthful.
See IR Websites Replace Phone for Fund Manager for more on this theme
Now I see that the Associated Press is reporting on new study of 1,475 public teenage profiles on MySpace that concludes that these kids aren’t as stupid as alarmed parents think they are.
Contrary to the myth that kids are exposing themselves with abandon university researchers found that 91% of the teens’ profiles did not list full names. And 40% keep their profiles private.
Only 5% of the next generation posted pictures of themselves in bathing suits or underwear (probably future hedge fund managers!).
Not easily impressed
The researchers say there are benefits for kids who use MySpace and other social sites. One is that users learn HTML coding.
That means when these people visit your company’s website, they notice more than just the words on the screen or the nice layout and design. They have some sense of how your site is put together and they’re not easily impressed.
Indeed, 99.5% of corporate website sites today are likely to leave the so-called “Net Generation” cold. That’s my opinion based on our survey of more than 500 industry leaders’ investor relations websites.
And that’s a problem investor relations and public relations departments need to get their heads around, quick.
A seperate study by USC-Annenberg School Center for the Digital Future has found that participation in online communities leads to social activism.
Fully 43.7% of online community members participate more in social activism since they started participating in online communities.
Connect the dots…