Tweenspeak: The world's newest language
- Sunday, October 16 - 2005 at 09:29
Tweens communicate with others all around the globe. In fact, 15 percent are doing this on a weekly basis.
Our research figures show close to 60 percent of all kids around the world have discarded traditional grammar in favor of the far cooler texting language. Twenty-five percent state they would prefer to text on their cell phones or chat on the Internet than communicate "for real" -- even if they are sitting side by side!
Increasingly clear to me is Tweenspeak is much more than a new way of writing. It's a new language, which operates with icon-based symbols, abbreviations, contractions, and numerals -- enabling tweens in the U.S. to talk with tweens in Japan with very little misunderstanding. Now that phones come with full-color screens and built-in cameras, messages are jam-packed with cartoons, broken hearts, houses, trees, animals, and a whole host of emoticons.
See for yourself. Ask any tween to give you a glance at her e-mail or online conversations. You will see what they call "cute" icons, proving in a whole new way a picture is worth a thousand words.
What does it mean for you? A lot. The BRANDchild study revealed 80 percent of all brands purchased by parents are heavily influenced by their tweens, so marketers must develop dual strategies.
Part of the strategy necessitates talking Tweenspeak. This is not to say you should discard your corporate language, but considering the value of communicating to both audiences simultaneously is important. The challenge is to integrate corporate language and the cooler Tweenspeak.
Tweens are a totally and thoroughly unique generation. They are the world's first truly interactive population. They are born with a computer screen as their window on the world and use a mouse to navigate. Their expectations of brands are enormous. Their desires need to be satisfied instantaneously. Their influence, as we've discovered, is huge. For all these reasons, it's important you rethink who your target audience is. Then redesign to appeal to your audience.
It's a challenge to balance conveying your brand message and maintaining the ethical (and legal) standards required to speak directly to kids. If nothing else, you need to begin discussing this internally. Because if you fail to pay heed to the language of tweens, it won't take long for them to persuade their parents to support a much "cooler" brand, which may very likely be on your competitor's site.
New ways of communicating will most likely replace the traditional channels that we know today. It's already happening. About a third of all tweens prefer surfing the Internet to watching television. And close to 50 per cent would rather play a computer game than turn on a television show. Bearing these figures in mind, it's clear that we'll need to change our language to reach the generation of the future.
Articles in this section are primarily provided directly by the companies appearing or PR agencies which are solely responsible for the content. The companies concerned may use the above content on their respective web sites provided they link back to http://www.ameinfo.com
Any opinions, advice, statements, offers or other information expressed in this section of the AMEinfo.com Web site are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of AME Info FZ LLC / 4C. AME Info FZ LLC / 4C is not responsible or liable for the content, accuracy or reliability of any material, advice, opinion or statement in this section of the AMEinfo.com Web site.