Not Their Parents’ Activism: How Millennials are Using Digital to Take a Stand on Issues They Care About

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Not Their Parents’ Activism: How Millennials are Using Digital to Take a Stand on Issues They Care About

by Whitney Dailey
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Not Their Parents’ #Activism: #Millennials Use Digital to Take a Stand on Issues They Care About | http://3bl.me/vbtr8x via @CSRwire

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Whitney Dailey is a supervisor at Cone Communications on the CSR Insights & Intel team

Friday, December 26, 2014 - 12:30pm

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Millennials are the first generation of true digital natives. They were just babies during the advent of Apple’s first laptop  and teens when the Nokia 3210 mobile phone launched and forever changed the telecommunications market. Today, Millennials spend an astounding average of 17.8 hours a day consuming different types of media, with social media topping the list as most important. So it’s almost a given that organizations looking to reach this group with social or environmental messages should turn to digital, but what’s the best approach to engage this savvy audience?

Findings from the 2014 Cone Communications Digital Activism Study reveal that organizations looking to reach Americans through digital channels must hyper-target their approach, as each audience seeks unique content, on different platforms, with diverse drivers to action. Millennials are no exception, with digital and social media closely integrated within their personal brand identity.

Promoting, discussing and taking action around issues is part of Millennials’ DNA. They effortlessly use social media to tell the world what they stand for; as 71 percent use these channels as a platform to discuss issues they care about (vs. 52% U.S. average). This generation grew up with the ability to voice their opinions to the masses, so activism and digital engagement are seamlessly interwoven. And Millennials understand the power of their collective social voice – nearly three-quarters (73%) feel tweeting or posting information about social or environmental issues online is an effective form of advocacy or support.

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Whitney Dailey is a supervisor at Cone Communications on the CSR Insights & Intel team, where she leads the development and distribution of industry-leading research studies, including the 2014 Cone Communications Digital Activism Study and 2014 Cone Communications Food Issues Trend Tracker. Her expertise in corporate social responsibility, sustainability and social media helps to guide thought leadership at the agency as well as the creation of a number of CSR-related tools. Whitney has a personal interest in sustainable food systems, urban gardening and sustainable sites. She holds an MBA in Environmental Management and Entrepreneurship from the University of Massachusetts, Boston and a BA from the George Washington University. She also earned an MBA Certificate in Clean Energy and Sustainability from the University of Massachusetts, Boston. She is a guest lecturer at Harvard University, Boston University and Simmons College.  Whitney tweets at @WhitneyDailey.

Keywords: Social Impact & Volunteering | CSRwire | Cone Communications | Philanthropy & Cause Initiatives | activism | millenials

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