As a social media moderator for small businesses, I've had the pleasure of hearing different views on social media's significance and it's place in our modern world. After listening to older clients discuss "THE TWITTER", "THE GOOGLE" and "THE BOOK OF FACES" - yes, these comments are for real - I am reassured of one thing pertaining to marketing
and generation gaps. The basic principles of neither have changed. That said, a level of acceptance must exist between the two for successful marketing.
Marketing, Public Relations, Advertising and Social Media enables getting goods/services to buyers who will open their wallets to purchase wares. Marketing encompasses image, branding, packaging and presentation. This age old concept is the core of how it works and applies in today's world.
In this regard, the generation gap is the same as it has always been. Older generations shake their heads at the young wondering why their music is so loud, why their hair is so long or why their jeans are worn so low. "Back in my day" is a mainstay of many conversations. And, let's not forget the over 50 crowd were once teenagers sending shock waves to generations before with the use of what was hip or cool at the time. (Who is this ELVIS person anyway?)
Let's think about how this applies to social media. Seniors don't understand why anyone would make their personal information public on the internet. Younger folks make public their secrets for the universe to see. Now the irony arises because older folks have realized social media is a great way to communicate with their younger family members. Just because they don't understand it, doesn't mean they won't use it.
The end result is that the gap is still open while a "social media" bridge has been built allowing the free flow of communication. If social media can allow the generation gap to narrow - even slightly - a business owner best pay attention. Using social media as a part of a marketing plan sounds pretty significant to me.