Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Party like it's 1982

I'm at a conference at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, MA. What an amazing stadium. I haven't' been here since the 90's when I saw U2 in concert. There is now a Victoria's Secret and Aeropostale in what used to be the dirt parking lot!!

Back to the conference...it is all about how marketers, like myself, take advantage of "new marketing" which is loosely defined these days but includes bloggers, "tweeters", and anyone using anything besides TV or traditional means to advertise their message.

In the middle of my day had a wake-up call about the generation now known as Digital Natives, Millenials or Gen-Y. Anyone born between 1982-2002 now falls into that category. Anyone born before 1982 is known as a Digital Immigrant. I'm nauseous - and an immigrant. There were 4 "Digital Natives" that presented today. Let me regurgitate their presentation for you all:

  • they are self-centered

  • they are used to getting what they want

  • they are told they can be anything they want to be

  • 1 in 3 believe they will be famous

  • they don't remember life before the Internet

  • they expect instant gratification

  • if you are a phony online, they can tell and they resent you for it

  • When I realized I was on the cusp of being able to be the mother of one of these presenters, I became pretty depressed. Self-centered. Used to getting what they want. We can't blame the Internet or technology on that - we can only blame the upbringing these "kids" have had - if my generation and the generation before had provided realistic expectations to them when they were younger and had told them they could be anything they wanted IF THEY WORKED FOR IT then maybe I wouldn't have felt like slapping each of these 21 - 26 year olds that presented. It was an incredible wake up call. My parents always wanted life to be better for me than what they had, but they never instilled this sense of selfishness.

    I'm worried and wondering how we fix it. How do we stop the madness and remind our kids that they are worthy, but only if they respect, protect and appreciate the world they that have been raised in - because in all honestly we aren't on this earth that long and we don't 'own' it, we share it with everyone else on this planet?

    I challenge Moms to keep their kids grounded and humble. Life is too short to think you deserve only the best because sometimes life can, and should, disappoint you.

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