Hewlett-Packard is expanding into the social media sphere and targeting college-age consumers, who offer advice to their parents and grandparents on which notebooks, desktops, work stations and other entertainment equipment to buy.
College-age kids are influential among their peers. They also advise their parents and grandparents on buying things like computers and related equipment.
Bloggers write product reviews, and the conversation can continue and evolve, unlike traditional media where a story in today’s newspaper has a shelf life of about 24 hours. (See my article “Let bloggers create publicity for you.”)
The news hole in newspapers and magazines is shrinking. (HP is still targeting traditional media but will rely more on stand-alone photos and captions, seen frequently by scanners. See my article “13 tips for using photos & graphics in your publicity campaign.”)
Social media allows HP to target video game fans who frequently communicate through blogs and social networking sites.
Makes sense. Besides, kids aren’t the only ones using social media sites.
A Sept. 12 article in the New York Times explains that a new wave of capital is pouring into social media sites that target Boomers and offer news, commentary, photo-sharing and discussion forums on subjects like dating, fitness and health care.
Most of the 78 million Baby Boomers (roughly three times the number of teen- agers), are Internet users with computer skills.
Sites like Eons, Rezoom, Multiply, Boomj and Boomertown are attracting a graying audience that has lots of disposable income. I’ll bet many of these people have stopped subscribing to newspapers and even some magazines—the same publications you’re targeting in your publicity campaign.
Unlike younger people who jump from one trendy site to the next, graying Internet users might be more likely to linger in one spot online—a potentially profitable characteristic that’s catching the attention of investors.