Monumental Millennials: Engaging Youth With Social Media, Part 1

School is back in session and as students return to classrooms and desks, it begs the question, what is your organization doing to engage the youth of today and the leaders of tomorrow?

This isn’t just a question for post-Labour Day meetings and massive volunteer drives. It’s a question every organization should be answering on a daily basis.

The Millennial generation, those anywhere from 10-years-old to 30, have more access, influence and desire to participate than ever before and it’s due, in large part, to the power of technology and social media.

It’s no secret, Millennials aren’t just the ones who are going to be future members, executives, volunteers and donors for your non-profit or association; they already are all those things.

With all the possible ways to be active in organizations and the means to take advantage of them, Millennials are drawn mostly to organizations that can relate to them, engage with them and show them why they should commit to these organizations.

The beauty of social media is that it can achieve all the above in a way that is not only accessible for today’s youth and young adults, but does it in a technological language that many Millennials are now fluent in.

So, without further ado, here are some social media tools to capture the attention and loyalty of a generation.

Vine

Vine is to YouTube, what Twitter has been to blogging; a micro version. Vine is an app that enables users to record and share six-second videos for others to see. It’s quick, easy, visual, wildly popular and has pushed the bounds of creativity. It kind of sounds like the perfect formula doesn’t it? It’s a great way to get youth involved in your non-profit’s cause and share their passion and engagement with the world. It can also make science incredibly fun, which says something about its appeal.

Instagram

Like Vine and Twitter, Instagram is another abbreviated form of social media and has exploded in popularity in the past couple years. Facebook is a great platform to post pictures or videos and engage with members or the community, but Instagram is entirely devoted to uploading photos and short videos. Unlike Facebook, Instagram tends to be a more personal documentation of the user’s day-to-day life, which is an amazing thing for an organization that wants to capture its human side, the passion of their members or staff or wants to be humorous or informative. Instagram also allows you to caption and hashtag photos, which makes engagement incredibly easy.

LinkedIn

Social media is great for, well, building a social network. But LinkedIn allows for professional networking as well. Millennials in high school, post-secondary studies and in the work force have been increasingly using LinkedIn for years now to network with those individuals and companies that share the same professional causes, interests and aspirations. LinkedIn has responded by making groups easier to use and creating a sleeker format for personal pages. Connecting with young go-getters doesn’t get any easier or invigorating than LinkedIn where organizations can have conversations on a variety of topics with those who are interested in committing time, money or their careers to certain causes.

Millennials are using social media more and more and are looking for ways to change to world using these platforms. Give them a chance to do so through your organization and its social media.

Next week, in part two of this blog, we will discuss the dos and don’ts of engaging youth and Millennial generation. Stay tuned!

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