I just got back from the 2009 Ypulse Youth Marketing Mashup in San Francisco and it was an incredible, informative and all around great two days to meet up with old friends, meet lots of new colleagues and to talk about what's happening in the youth media and marketing space.
I'm planning on doing some longer posts on the Mashup, but thought I'd use the the Weekly Wrap to share some of the scoop from the 2009 Ypulse Mashup event.
Josh Ship Ypulse Mashup Opening Keynote: Youth guru Josh Shipp gave the opening keynote for the 2009 Ypulse Mashup.If you haven't heard about Josh and his pretty incredible story---you need to! Josh shocked the crowd, comprised of mostly marketing and media types, when he told them "teens don't give a crap about your brand."
His advice? Be authentic. Tell your story. Do you have a story that I would plug in on my Facebook status or Tweet to my friends? If you don't, your brand has a problem.
To be honest, the crowd response to Josh's keynote was a bit frosty. Classic case of shooting the messenger. Other nuggets 'o wisdom from Josh: Email is dead (it's all about mobile). Free stuff rules! Never underestimate the power of free cookies and girls. [Follow Josh Shipp on Twitter]
Speaking of Teens & Twitter: One big theme of the conference was that teens & tweens don't use Twitter. Teens tend to be on Twitter as observers, not contributors (in educational psychology/instructional design speak this we call this Legitimate Peripheral Participation [LPP]).
Teens prefer updating their whereabouts or their status within the walled gardens of social networking services like Facebook or MyYearbook. Someone at the conference commented: "We used to call it ADD, now it's who we are." So, so true.
Mobile Teens: Five quick blurbs from the breakout session on youth and mobile phones:
- The median age for first mobile phone is around 11.5, next year projected to be 10;
- SMS is unsexy, but it's persuasive technology. 80% in US have sent/received a text message;
- According to according to Niels Aillaud from LG Mobile, carriers used to make money on voice plans however, in next few years data revenue will surpass voice and will go to 80-20 ratio. 2010 is the year of mobile;
- Mobile phone is increasingly becoming the access point to the web outside the USA;
- A Harris poll found that 59% of youth will to provide personal info to get targeted information in return, but be aware that teens have high expectations for privacy controls, user experience, want to be in full control of their info.
Truth and Dare: At the Mashup, we had the opportunity to attend a private screening of the indie (teen) film "Dare." The movie chronicles the coming of age of four teens who attend a private school in the suburbs.
The film, which garnered rave reviews and kudos from the crowd at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival, features cameo appearances by Alan Cumming and Sandra Bernhard. The young actors do an equally incredible job portraying the roller coaster ride of hormones, desire and trying to just figure it all out.
But this isn't a movie just for teens. Some of us who think we have figured it all out could learn a thing or two about being more daring and doing something we're afraid of...
Let's get one thing straight: The film will make parents squirm. But that shouldn't deter you from seeing it and using it as a jumping off point for meaningful dialogue between parents and teens. You can connect with Dare on Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, or their website.
I loved this film.
Disney Launches U Rock 2: The Disney.com folks blew me away. No, I mean really. I didn't expect them to, but this is one "old media" organization that really, really gets it and is fully embracing the world of social media, online community and user generated content (UGC) as a way to connect with their viewers.
As part of it's UGC drive, Disney has launched the second edition of U Rock 2, a site where they provide the IP and allow kids to remix, mashup and create own music video. There are strict moderation policies in place and parents must approve all media before it's uploaded onto U Rock 2. Disney has created a "how to" video series, hosted by their music artist, that teach kids how to mashup and create their own music video. Brilliant!
Two other amazing factoids about the power of kid user generated content on Disney.com: 95% of video uploaded to Disney.com/urock had a comment or rating (wow!). 2/ A kid mashup of a JoBro single performed twice as well as the "official" Jonas Brothers content. Yeah, amazing.
And oh, who's waiting in the wings to follow in the footsteps of Miley and the JoBros? A young singer-songwriter named Mitchell Musso.
Ypulse Mashup Live Blog and Live Tweets: Ypulse had two volunteers who did a great job taking notes for the the official Live Blog. You can check out the Live Blog, which also includes Tweets from the other participants, over on the Ypulse Mashup website. You can also do a search on Twitter using the official conference hash tag #ypulse09.