A quick note on marketing course: digital natives, creativity

I started my third course in the Integrated Marketing Certificate program today with Doug Dome’s “Managing Integrated Marketing Communications.” Coincidentally, I went on a field trip to Doug’s company Dome Communications somewhere in 2003 or 2004 when I was studying marketing communications at Columbia College. A lot has happened since, including Dome Communications being bought by Hill & Knowlton, but most importantly the manifestation of the shift in the media and marketing environment (which is why I went back to school in the first place).

Two things in this first class sparked my memory of previous blog posts. Doug talked about a change in the workforce where entry-level, right-out-of-college youngsters are valuable because of their lifestyle experience, i.e. digital natives. Yet for all this new value, they lack the strategic experience and the know-how of client relationships. This echoes perfectly what I wrote in September of last year:

As a senior manager, it is your duty to listen to those lower-level employees that might have more familiarity and experience with the tools and the environment and help them understand how it fits into your organization’s mission and strategy. As a lower-level employee, it is your responsibility to start thinking strategically and help your superior understand how to use the tools and how to adapt to the new environment. It is the responsibility of both parties to start trusting each other.

The second concept Doug mentioned was, and I’m paraphrasing, that creative nowadays means setting up a system in which creative can happen. He was talking about advertising and marketing creative, but I think we can apply this to creative as it applies to art in general.

This reminded me of the post in which I wrote about cultural change happening in a technological framework. Part of this cultural change is an opening up in creativity; a chance for everyone to showcase their creativity. Social media as a whole is perhaps a meta-example of such a system, a world perhaps, in which creativity happens. Think all kinds of user-generated content. Creativity today means allowing and setting the stage for people to be creative.

A great start to the class. Very interested in one of the required readings “Flip the Funnel: How to Use Existing Customers to Gain New Ones,” and what that means for arts organizations. Expect plenty of words on that.