Wednesday, January 19, 2011

What is the most effective way to reach out to teens?

What is the most effective way to reach out to teens?

With the rise of technology and advanced communication and the fact that you can’t drive two blocks without seeing a teenager walking around with their headphones in and their thumbs typing wildly over a cell phone keyboard lead many to believe that the most effective way to reach teens in through technology.  I have used many social media tools to connect with young people with some success, but as time goes by nothing can replace a face-to-face encounter with another person.  According to a piece on HolyKaw.com marketers have identified some myths when it comes to marketing to teens.  They are as follows: Myth 1: Texting is the way to teens. Myth 2: Teen Word-of-mouth happens online. Myth 3: If you build it, teens will come.  I think that these lessons can and should be applied by youth workers as well.  Those of us that think that we have a grasp on youth culture must realize that they are real people, not just objects to be studied.  Rather than market to them and expect them to engage with you just because you are “online” take the chance to engage with them in their environment.  Hit the streets and find out what is important to them.  You may find, that as awesome as your program might be, if it isn’t meeting a felt need – they won’t show up.


How do you reach out to teens and is it working?



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