Meetings

Social Media Roundup: A Multigenerational View

By / Mar 26, 2014 (iStock/Thinkstock)

How conference centers are trying to keep people of all ages pleased. Plus: what associations can take away from the “selfie” phenomenon outside of the supposed target audience.

We need them, but they confuse us.

While it’s obvious to us that generation Y is fully fluent in technology and all things social, it doesn’t mean that we fully understand the mysterious millennials. But maybe we don’t understand boomers, either. And perhaps, given the context or resource need, generation X confuses us, too.

A couple takes on trying to reach different generations in today’s Social Media Roundup:

Many Generations, One Conference Center

Over at Successful Meetings, Andrea Doyle reminds us that generational concerns are important when choosing a conference center—no matter whether your audience is in their 20s or their 70s. And their needs may differ: Older generations may want more information on what’s within walking distance from the conference, while millennials are likely curious about evening entertainment options.

But even though younger audiences are tech-oriented—with digital interaction and WiFi among some of their top needs—that doesn’t necessarily mean that the design of the conference has to be overly modern. It just means that the conveniences have to be available. Check out the full list of features that event-goers in various generations are looking for in a conference center. (ht @SuccessfulMtgs)

Selfie Indulgence For All Ages

Tweeting celebrities aren’t the only ones who can indulge in shameless self-promotion.

Blackbaud intern Ben Baker looks past the superficiality of the selfie and shares how nonprofits can use the snapshots to build stronger relationships with their members. Since social media creates a “level playing field,” he says, everyday people have a better chance at having their voices heard or faces seen.

(Depending on how tech-savvy the users are, they might need a little guidance, though.)

Baker’s takeaway for associations: The selfie, and social media in general, can be the great generational equalizer.

“The fact is, my generation wants to look you in the eyes when we talk to you, not up your nose,” he writes. “We want to be talked with, not talked to. And, honestly, even if you are above us economically and socially, social media gives us the illusion that you aren’t.” (ht @blackbaud)

Alexis Williams & Alexis Davis

Alexis Williams & Alexis Davis are contributors to Associations Now. More »

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