You Were Born When?! How Politicians Can Connect with YAYAs

I recently started as the Operations Manager for YAYA Connection. (YAYA stands for Youth and Young Adult.) I have blogged for the company and thought I could share the blog post here as well. You can click here to see the blog on the website, or just scroll down.

You Were Born When?! How Politicians Can Connect with YAYAs

There’s no escaping politics this year. Constant attack ads and gaffes from each candidate put a spotlight on every decision our elected leaders make in office and in their personal lives. The amount of information available is at an all-time high, which means the access of that information is at an all-time high as well. And who knows the technology to access the information the best? YAYAs!

“In 2000, only 40 percent of millennials were old enough to vote. But each year since then, 4 million more millennials- the generation born between 1982 to 2003 – become eligible. That’s 16 million more potential eligible young voters since 2008.” And according to the Boston Consulting Group, US millennials will outnumber non-millennials by 22 million by 2030.

So, how can politicians connect with YAYAs and make them listen to their message? The number one way is…

Reference events that YAYAs have experienced

The most influential events in current YAYA’s lives are the attacks on September 11th, the wars in the Middle East, and the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression. References to Watergate, Vietnam, the Gulf War, and the Cold War are all events that YAYAs have read about in textbooks, but each happened before they were born. Even the Oklahoma City Bombing is too old of a reference for YAYAs. Due to technology, YAYAs have very short attention spans. In order to make YAYAs care about what you are talking about, try including them in the conversation. For example, acknowledge that recent events, such as September 11th, have affected them as well.

YAYAs believe experts on issues are not just those with higher degrees and academic superiority, but also people who have real experiences. They believe that there is rarely, if ever, a Truth with a capital ‘T’, but rather many truths with lower case ‘t’s. There are many different truths to YAYAs, but the most universal truths are the experiences they share with each other.

What other ways do you think politicians can connect with YAYAs?


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