Encore Post: Our Generational Hurdle
Yes, the big move to Casa Parker 2.0 continues, so I’ve chosen another post to revive as an encore. This one actually generated some lively conversation the first time around, and I hope you’ll find it interesting.
Regular blogging schedule will resume soon, promise. In the meantime, let’s take a look at the generational attitudes that affects many of us when it comes to the Web 2.0.
My “baby” nephew Tyler turned 20 a couple of days ago, and as I went to his Facebook page to post a birthday greeting (‘cuz nobody emails anymore, duh), I noticed his friend count: 626. Now Ty’s definitely not lacking in social graces, but he’s never been what I’d call gregarious. And yet 626 people have friended him online.
It got me to thinking about how differently our generations view this whole social media business. People in their 20s fearlessly rush into that let-it-all-hang-out goldfish bowl of blogs, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and other arenas without a care in the world. But with folks my age, well, there’s a certain hesitation, a nagging fear that does its best to hold us back from putting ourselves and our ideas out there in blogs, in photos, in audio and video.
And I think I know why.
On publication and perfection
I was born in 1968 (yeah, yeah, do the math, I’m 42 and proud of it), and all through my formative years:
- the only published content I knew was in books, magazines, and newspapers.
- the only broadcast audio I knew was radio.
- the only published photos I knew were in magazines.
- the only broadcast video I knew was TV and the movies.
In other words, if it was meant to be seen, heard, or read by more than a few people, it had gone through a painstaking process of winnowing out the very best, the smartest, the most beautiful, the most talented, and giving them a stage on which to shine.
That hallowed circle still exists today, but with a major twist: there’s now a massive tailgating party going on all around it—in the form of blogs, podcasts, social networks, and online video channels—where everybody can have a place.
Try pulling out a video camera and mention the word “post” in front of a group of 40-somethings, and most of us will either dash out of range or scramble for the nearest hairbrush and lipgloss. Do the same thing with a group of 20-somethings and they start throwing gang signs. And that’s not just because of youthful bravado. It’d because of a certain comfort level with being put “out there” for all to see and hear.
Time to jump in
Believe it or not, all this does have something to do with social media for business. If you’re over 30 (or not ) and those nagging “but will it be good?” thoughts are holding you back from starting a blog, making online videos, or setting up a podcast for your business, it’s time to move forward. You do have something to say that will interest people “out there.” So come up with some good, useful content, package it to the best of your ability, and put it where people can find it. Remember, you’re working in an environment where perfection is not only unnecessary, it’s downright detrimental.So jump on in. The water’s fine.
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