Why PR is a Habitual Trend-Bomber

PR and marketing are all about understanding your audience. Knowing who they are, where they go, what they read and what makes them tick.

It is about connecting businesses with their audiences and vice versa. To do this successfully we use language that each audience will understand and identify with. Simple, right?

When we try to be totally reem and crash your squad by chatting your language and creating a media shower, the message becomes lame and makes us trend-bombers.*

Make sense?

The fact is that when marketers attempt to communicate with generation Z by adopting words and phrases which are very current and cool, we force them into the mainstream, and by default, make them uncool (a practice known as trend-bombing).

For example, streaming service Netflix has created a button called ‘The Switch’** which will dim the lights, order takeaway, put your phone onto do not disturb and set up a night’s viewing. This is the company’s response to the phrase ‘Netflix and chill’ becoming code for casual sex. Whilst an ingenious response, this grabs headlines (media shower), pushes the terminology further into the mainstream and makes it uncool.

When nice images of things we love became collectively known as ‘porn’ (food, shoe, car…), going out to eat becomes a ‘cheeky Nandos’ and when we begin ‘consciously uncoupling’ instead of breaking up, we push generation Z onto the next definition of hip as they are driven by the desire not to conform.

It’s the same reason that thousands of teens have turned their backs on Facebook in favour of Instagram and Snapchat. Facebook has become the domain of their parents and even grandparents – and therefore, is simply not cool.

So, as an industry, what can we do? We should stay true to brand values and communicate clearly using plain English. After all – everyone can identify with that. We might drop in the occasional tongue in cheek phrase to show that we know what the audience is all about but we keep it simple and straightforward – grammatically correct with accurate punctuation – just as we were taught back in the days when we were cool!

Or you could just continue with the painful effort to keep up with what’s hip. After all – YOLO!

*Definitions taken from UrbanDictionary.com

Reem: Great, cool, perfect.

Crash Your Squad: When someone is new, or hasn’t found their group yet, a group lets them hang with them until they make friends.

Trend-bomber: When someone tries to become a part of a trend that they do not belong in. Posing to apart of a cultural trend that they have no business being a part of.

Chatting: When one is talking almost complete nonsense, but all other gangstas are like ‘yeah brud, I get you.

Media Shower: When a celebrity or a brand gets WAY too much spotlight.

Lame: just plain stupid, unoriginal, or lifeless.

YOLO: You Only Live Once

**http://www.theguardian.com/media/shortcuts/2015/sep/29/how-netflix-and-chill-became-code-for-casual-sex

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