Social Media has changed the way people think, the way people react, the way people communicate and the way companies brand themselves. For many, it is an integral part of their overall business, PR, and CRM strategies as well.
Moreover, Social Media has changed the structure of the brain itself by becoming an addiction. Addiction forces new generations to function in a self inflicted multitasking learning environment. For instance, studies have found that students studying at Ivy League Universities have problems with their capacity to stay focused on a single task. This leads to misunderstandings, disorganized memory and lack of capacity to think clearly. This has made reputable professors ask themselves if they are just unable to prepare capable-thinking students, as the quality of the learning process has been decreasing.
According to a recent study in Korea, children are spending 50 hours/week playing computer games. This sort of behavior is considered a psychiatric disorder. The Korean Government decided to support the creation of schools to treat computer addiction, where children having such issues can stay for 2 weeks and partake in a free training. This issue is part of a broader problem – multitasking syndrome – which is generating constant interruptions. Consequently, the ability of students to focus single tasks are hampered.
Brilliant students from top universities that are concentrating on multiple fronts the same time “by profession”, have been asked if they were able to perform well while multitasking, and their answers were positive. The actual experiment on them showed otherwise: the capacity of the brain while switching from task to task modified their capacity to stay focused.
Technology has changed the way new generations are thinking, communicating and behaving. In another experiment, listening to one stimulus while watching another unrelated, led to reduced brain activity when compared with listening or looking alone.
Of course the first question that comes to one’s mind is “What does this have to do with marketing?” It’s up to marketers to position a brand in an efficient manner, especially for this target. This may mean that marketers should start working closely with psychologists /sociologists to understand people’s behavior according to demographics and psycho-graphics.
How will digital marketing adapt to this? This market has different potential and has to be approached differently – not in the same manner this audience was targeted 10 years ago.
Not only is Technology changing and improving itself, but it also changes people and the structure of the society from a relational perspective. Marketing has to change the platforms of their message and adapt to consumers by the way it structures its visual stimulants and language. This is most easily likened to the “elevator pitch”. Attention has to be caught in the first moments otherwise you risk the distraction from another element. The challenge is an alternative form of getting the customer to understand your brand or product in under 3 minutes, or some may argue less (when distraction typically occurs).
In other words, the new generations, coming from Ivy League Universities or not, change the perspective of the education process itself, change the way technology repositions its newest devices and most importantly, change marketing’s way to address messages (language and platforms).
Do you know what is the common asset of all these? The brain itself….