There’s always a tell-tale sign (ladies) when out painting the town, that a guy is far too young for you – I mean besides the baby-face and the Bieber fringe:
Before he asks you where you’re from, what you do for a living or even what it is you’re drinking, he will always ask you how old you are.
It always makes my heart sink as it’s just something that an older gent wouldn’t dare broach until much later on – say when you offered up the information.
I celebrated a birthday earlier this week and, without offending anyone over 30, getting ‘old’ certainly gets easier with every year. Now trudging into the ‘wrong’ side of my twenties, it seems that everyone around me is turning 21 and whereas age felt so much more of an issue when I was at that stage in my own life, I’m finding that the older I get, the less of a flying one I give – and it feels incredible.
So should age really matter that much?
Or does my annoyance at this new dating etiquette just prove how much it does matter and that my ‘never ask a lady’ views are, frighteningly, out-dated?
In an age of social platforms and people telling the whole world exactly “how it is” from the moment we wake up to the moment we go to sleep (and even those moments we “Can’t sleeeeep!”), does being younger and more outspoken now give you an edge when it comes to being social in business?
I’m aware that I’m still young myself, but it only takes an exchange at the bar or one afternoon of hanging out with my 15-year-old sister to make me feel like a complete social dinosaur. Having said that, she is also a great help: I know I can always quiz her on what’s new and she’s always happy and willing to show me around the latest platform, app or trend.
And it’s this collaboration that I believe is key here.
Sure, younger employees are increasingly proficient in all the technological tools they now have at their disposal and they’re not afraid to use them – after all, a lot of very young entrepreneurs will now have been born into it. This doesn’t mean to say that older generations aren’t capable or willing to jump aboard these social platforms too. In fact, despite social media still being widely dominated by the under-30s, a recent poll by Forbes states that people ages 65+ are the fastest growing demographic when it comes to social platforms.
Admittedly, there’s a lot to be learnt from Generation Y’s more gutsy approach to social marketing – they’re naturally more inclined to take risks and have more experience when it comes to adapting to an ever-changing market.
However, I believe there’s also a certain level of social responsibility and specialist knowledge that comes with the experience of generation X-ers and above that isn’t something that can be so easily gained. In order to market your business successfully you need to gain a steady balance between of all these qualities by tackling social media as a team.
Much like with me and my sister, bridging the age gap via social collaboration is not only the best way to learn new skills, but also the best way to communicate to a wider online audience. A work force willing to learn from each other, adapt to changes and plough through mistakes together no matter of age, will soon see results from their social media campaigns, showing other businesses and end users just how well you work together in the process.
In answer to my own question, no I don’t really think that age has much to do with social media success – but I do believe you need a certain amount of team spirit to be on board with it.
So to hell with age! No one wants to be stood at the bar alone… I mean, no one wants to fly the social media flag alone! Getting on board with social is almost impossible without the support or interest of your colleagues and is just a recipe for a half-baked, inactive online presence. Get everyone believing in social and tackling it together and age soon becomes just a number.