Thursday, 28 March 2013

Age - what's it to you?

Maybe it's because I'm planning birthday parties at the minute, maybe it's because at work they call me Auntie Fiona for to most I'm (relatively) old  I've been pondering on the notion of age. ( I should add that for some of my sailing gang I'm still a whipper snapper with all these crazy ideas about newfangled computers and mobile things, software, hardware, techniques and tricks though, so it's all relative.)

We used to call people over 60 OAPs. Luckily that's evolved at least if into the icky American term "seniors" or the nicer silver surfers, even if I dare you to suggest that to a number of ladies of my acquaintance who would rather not disclose their hairdressing secrets... after all my Mum taught me there were certain questions it was rude to ask.

 I have many 60+ friends, one of the offshore sailors I most admire and sail with confidently and happily is 70. I certainly don't think of them as old. There's no pipe and slippers or bad taste flowery cardigans or "I can't go out Coronation St is on". These are active, confident, outgoing people who mostly have a better social life than I do because they are lucky enough to have the thing I don't have - time, and for many a better standard of living that my generation will be able to afford. In their day mortgages were still big and hairy but rarely had hundreds of thousands in the price.

Society needs to get a better grip on valuing knowledge and wisdom over novelty, more reverse mentoring to drive the digital agenda.  I'm on my own personal crusade to upskill a handful of people, and it's a task that requires bags of patience I'll admit. Alone I can make a positive difference  to a few but not improve the lives of many at scale.  As a marketer, brands could be doing sooo much more to help - this is the age of the brand butler remember? Be useful don't just flog boxes.

So fair play to a brand with a long established relationship with the over 50s... (such youngsters(!)), for encouraging creativity, digital uptake and challenging the stereotypes with the Saga film competition, which somehow I've only just tripped over as digital treasure.

This was the winning entry. Be inspired. Then call your nearest older than you relative without a PC and talk to them about getting them a tablet, and set it up and show them how to use it.

You might want to download some of the Saga Apps whilst you're at it.

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