Kids In Charge
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I got an email from a friend yesterday where she complained about the kids running social media campaigns are "still wet behind the ears. Scares the bejesus out of me that [they] would call the creative shots."
I responded that I think the reason you see kids running projects for new media is because, well, it's new. It's not that they understand it more than anyone else, but it's that the people who are established in their trades have other things to do and leave the "new stuff" to the kids.
Problem is that the "new stuff" these days is really just an assemblage of old stuff. Unfortunately we've spent the last 40 years training "specialists" who understand the specific jargon of a specific sliver of a specific kind of marketing, but they don't understand brand management or creative development.
That, in turn, leads to the fact that the management for agencies and clients do not understand that they have a problem -- something new comes along and one of the kids, with no real business experience, jumps up and says, "Put me in coach!" The old guy doesn't see any harm because, heck, it's just some fad and what do we have to lose?
Of course everything moves so fast that everything seems like a fad. It's like I was saying about Time for New Ideas -- management (either agency or client) doesn't take the time to even try to understand how this new thing fits. They let the kids throw something up on Facebook, or they buy a tool that posts lame quotes on Twitter, or they build an iPhone App...
At the end of the day they end up with a pile of crap that doesn't improve the bottom line, doesn't create any value for the company, and wasted a lot of people's time and money. They blame the kid, when in reality, it was their own fault for acting without thinking, and giving responsibility without guidance.
Now, I'm not saying don't put the kid in, but don't throw the kid overboard and watch him drown. Senior management should be able to take on new ideas, know how they might fit, and then let someone run with it.
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Be sure to see my blog over at Cloudenity. This week's topic:
Identity Isn't Just for Users Anymore