Generation X comprises individuals born between the years 1965 and 1980. This generation essentially marks a period of rapid decline of births and the baby boom that characterized the 1950’s and the 1960’s. Consequently, members of this generation are significantly lower than those of other generations. Most of the individuals in this generation are currently in their 30’s and some in their early 40’s. The individuals are better educated and exhibit greater ethnical diversity. A large part of them has attended college. Some of the most distinguishable characteristics of this generation include
- Individualistic- They are resourceful, independent and self-sufficient. They value freedom and responsibility ate the workplace. They show disdain for structured authority and hate being micromanaged
- Technological adept- They are very technologically aware
- Flexible- Less committed to a single employer, can easily change jobs and can relatively adapt to change easily
- Value life/work balance- Members work to live and not vice versa
This is a group made up of people were born after 1980. Many are in their 20’s and are relatively new to the workforce. They comprise the fasted growing segment or sector of the current workforce. Some of their most distinguishable traits include.
- Family Centric- They prioritize family matters over work matters.
- Tech-savvy- Most of the member of this generation have grown with technology and are, therefore, familiar with many technological gadgets and can use them with ease. They prefer to communicate through electronic means
- Members are achievement oriented
- Members are attention craving (through guidance and feedback)
- Members are team oriented
Implications for Public Relations
It is clear that the two generations are characterized by members who are very technologically aware. Members are relatively familiar with advanced technological gadgets and modes of communication. Text messaging, emailing, social networking, mobile phones, IPads and similar gadgets are things that members of the two generations are hugely familiar with. Consequently, the major implication of public relations is that companies targeting these two generations should use the highly advanced technological means that appeal to them. They should disseminate information through media channels that are preferred by the members of this generations especially the internet. Most of the youth like interacting with brands through social media. Businesses should learn to take advantage of this and convert this active engagement into increased sales, revenues and profits.
Coca Cola Company is a globally renowned organization whose products are popular worldwide. The Company has over the years perfected its public relations segment and this has led to the emergence of company brands that have massive following across the globe. Public relations are a key contributor to an organization’s success and the communication instruments used hugely determine the success or failure of a business public relations. Coca Cola uses a couple of public relations communications instruments with the most prominent ones being press/news releases and brochures. Although both have been successful, the press releases have been more successful. The major advantage of press releases is that they can reach a huge audience at one instant. The press releases are also prone to fast results and a large number of responses.
However, press releases are disadvantaged in that they can be very expensive especially when released through traditional media such as newspaper. They are also not target specific. When it comes to brochures, the major advantage is that they are very flexible. They are small and can be placed on car windshields, windows or even passed along to people on the streets. Overall, they save time. They are, however, disadvantaged by space limitation. A brochure may not conclusively, however, all the information that a company wishes to disseminate to the public. The Coca Cola Company has preferred news releases mainly due to the large audience factor.
The press releases instruments have been the most effective instrument as it has enabled the company to reach its global audience. Although brochures are used marginally by Coca Cola, the main disadvantage that the company has found in them is the space limitation. Coca Cola has, therefore, generally preferred to use news releases than brochures since they offer a general platform for reaching a wide audience and also provide space for sufficient information about the company and its products to be disseminated to the public.
Oliver, S. (2010). Public relations strategy (3rd ed.). London: Kogan Page/CIPR.