Marketing to the youngens: Generation Y have their faces in a different type of book

Pretend we were to add another figure onto this well-known Neanderthal developing into computer nerd sequence- you’ve seen it before; it’s plastered across cheap Bali and Off Ya Tree T-shirts everywhere you look.

But the only thing that is to change from the last figure would be his hand. And this hand would be bent irreversibly into the following shape:

  • Middle three fingers splayed
  • Pinky finger curled sharply towards the palm
  • Thumb posed forward ready for continuous circular motion

For those performing this action right now, congratulations. You have been invited to the digital obsession movement, and iPhone is hosting. God forbid there’ll be anything but apple martinis.

It’s not news that Generation Y enjoy love are obsessed with social media. The politics born from this ultra-reality that extend from high school to the 20s are enough to prove that. No, no, I simply can’t like his photo that he posted 3 weeks ago. I don’t have stalker written across my forehead!

As a result, Facebook and social media marketing has blown skyward. In 2012, 42% of marketers reported that Facebook is pivotal to their business exposure (State of Inbound Marketing, 2012). And according to WebDAM Solutions (2014), 52% of all marketers have found a customer via the social media king. In 2013, 55% of the world’s marketers indicated that they would increase spending on digital marketing in the next five years. Right on.

So it’s obvious that Facebook marketing is likely to hit a teen or two. With 81% of Gen Y-ers using Facebook every day (L2 Think Tank), twice as much as they watch TV or read the paper, you might even bet your Blackberry on it.

But there’s a catch.

Generation Y, hell, we, need to be engaged. Throw a 19 year old a television advertisement with groundbreaking cinematography, a popular soundtrack and good-looking young actors; they’ve likely just seen a better rendition of the commercial at the end of a thumb-swipe. Oh, that television thing. Yeah, yeah, I’m watching it. While Dad might be mind-blown, exclaiming the ad’s worthiness of a Golden Globe or candidacy at the next Canne Film Festival, this generation isn’t so impressed. The ad didn’t include them, so why would they interrupt their swipe-flow, dude?

Judging by the results of the recent international Facebook Studio Awards, Australia and New Zealand have clearly caught on, claiming four out of 15 of the titles (<a href="https://www.adnews cialis moins cher en”>AdNews, 2014). Three other Australian marketing campaigns made a place in the shortlist of 21, one of which has engaged Generation Y in a way they weren’t expecting.

Southern Cross Austereo’s Roadtrip Forever for the Victorian Transport Accident Commission created a heart wrenching, dare I say, tear-jerking social awareness campaign aimed at young women and their mobile phone use whilst driving. It integrates Facebook on a personal level, accessing (with permission) the viewer’s personal and friend information and creates a first-person simulation of a driving disaster following a festival.

Take the trip and see for yourself.

Now, that is Generation Y engagement. Not only do they see themselves as a part of the ad, but they are involved in such a way the message of Drive Now Instagram Later definitely hits home. If that doesn’t discourage 110km/h screen scrolling on the M1, I don’t know what will.

So marketers, if you’re tackling social media advertising towards that generation with ‘tude, make sure you do it right. Engage, engage, engage. You’ll thank yourself for it.

For those reading this on a smartphone, I’m sorry to interrupt your scrolling. Carry on.