I Am Gen Y: Communication

I am your stereotypical Gen Y. Admittedly I’m probably a little more tech savvy and geekier than most but this is how I communicate.

I do not write letters.

This is a given. And certainly not something I need to blog about. Although an interesting side point says companies should just send my bills and statements electronically, please stop wasting paper.

I do not use a landline phone.

With a ridiculous capped plan on my mobile I have no need to use a house phone. It’s a waste of money for me to pay any rental fees yet companies still insist I give them a mobile number and a home number when filling in forms. If you’re a telemarketer and no ones using landlines in 20 years… good luck to you. And I use Skype for any long conversations.

I do not use email.

Okay, that’s a lie. I use it and use it a fair bit. But my usage is slowly decreasing. With sms, instant messaging and Facebook chat/walls/notes, email is slowly becoming less important to me.

If you’re using these channels to communicate to me, you could be in trouble in a couple of years. Much like in the way I consume media, if you’re basing a business model off these platforms you need to rethink your approach.

  • Anonymous
    Posted at January 19, 2009 10:11am, 19 January Reply

    Sounds good!

  • Kate Richardson
    Posted at January 19, 2009 10:17am, 19 January Reply

    And I was just about to email you to ask you to call me about the letter I sent until I read that last sentence.

  • Stan Lee
    Posted at January 19, 2009 10:52am, 19 January Reply

    Am I supposed to care?

    Coz I don’t.

  • talkingdigital
    Posted at January 19, 2009 11:33am, 19 January Reply

    sorry to sound like a broken record but no one likes the person who sources a sample size of 1 when trying to illustrate a point.

    i know these posts are deliberate in terms of trying to agitate the reader … but most of the observations are personal and not entirely reflective of a wider gen y audience.

  • Zac Martin
    Posted at January 19, 2009 12:15pm, 19 January Reply

    @ Stan

    Your lightbulb comment was better.

    @ Talkingdigital

    Actually, this post isn’t meant to be provocative at all. And I would suggest this post is much more accurate of Gen Y than my last. Even my non blogging friends exhibit these characteristics.

  • Julian Cole
    Posted at January 19, 2009 12:45pm, 19 January Reply

    Thanks father Stan, for putting my broseph back in his place.

    Enough whinging, start giving us solutions, this line you are running is getting pretty repetitive!

    Add something to the conversation instead of going around in circles!

    Suggest solutions!

  • Zac Martin
    Posted at January 19, 2009 1:03pm, 19 January Reply

    @ Julian Cole

    All in good time. People read short posts and it keeps them coming back baby.

  • Tony Thomas
    Posted at January 19, 2009 1:31pm, 19 January Reply

    Probably worth spending a little time in the real world Zac. Not sure if you've ever worked in a marketing industry role or your insight is simply based off your own singular personal experience but once you start to apply a few basic fundamentals (like the brand, the consumer, & the objective) to your strategic comms planning you'll understand that all forms of media play different and varied roles depending on what the clients objectives are.
    It's also a little steep to predict the death of certain media channels based off your own personal media habits.
    I know you are trying to stir the pot but you only become believable when you develop a combination of insight and experience – things that are hugely important when you sit down in front of the marketing manager of your first client.

  • Zac Martin
    Posted at January 19, 2009 1:50pm, 19 January Reply

    @ Tony Thomas

    Yes, this is completely my own expirience and not based on anything else. I think I will follow this up with another post tomorrow with the reason I’m doing this. Thanks for the comment.

  • talkingdigital
    Posted at January 19, 2009 4:35pm, 19 January Reply

    “Even my non blogging friends exhibit these characteristics”

    my friends exhibit lots of characteristics too – i don’t shape my decisions around marketing/advertising around them though as there are much broader and more robust tools available.

    BTW Are you implying generally because Gen X exhibit certain trends we all have to shift what we’re doing to accommodate them. what about the other generations? I am sure there are loads of businesses that can survive the next 3 decades without pandering to Gen Y.

  • Ross Hill
    Posted at January 19, 2009 10:30pm, 19 January Reply

    We need more players in the GenY corner I think – I don’t write letters or have a landline either. I do use email a shitload, though I have noticed most friends check Facebook more than email.

    When Facebook make every facebook account an email account that will equalise it all.

    What’s wrong with a sample size of one? The long tail is here to give us whatever we want, we don’t need no crowd these days.

  • talkingdigital
    Posted at January 20, 2009 12:23pm, 20 January Reply

    “What’s wrong with a sample size of one?”

    erm … making sweeping generalisations on mass business models based on your own consumption habits.

    what does that have to do with the long tail anyway???

  • Danielle Warby
    Posted at January 30, 2009 11:48am, 30 January Reply

    At the end of the day, it’s still about identifying your audience and finding the best way to communicate with them. Zac makes a lot of salient points (great blog Zac, have just found you) and as someone who works in higher education, a lot of what he has to say is VERY pertinent.

    In my industry it’s all about easy access to information when they want it in the form they want it. Traditional advertising = fail in most cases (and I’m STILL trying to convince some that a $10K spend in the SMH is unwise – old habits and all that) and some of the best success we’ve had has been with Facebook, PR and improving SEO on our website.

    As a large institution we struggle with moving forward into the 21st Century and keeping abreast of new ways of communicating and I often feel that I’m banging my head against a brick wall but we’re getting there… mostly because we can’t afford not to.

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