Communicating effectively with youth is tantamount to walking the plank on a snakeboard — even if you can manoeuvre the snakeboard down the plank, you are bound to fall off the end before you can ride it back to the mother ship. Weaving in and out of the increasing advertising and promotional regulations and restrictions, not to mention winning over the cynical mindset of the average teen, can puzzle even the most seasoned communicator, and perhaps therein lies that age‐old problem, the generation gap. A combination of the old adage ‘know your target audience’, an understanding of the public relations opportunities that new and sub‐cultural media provide, and a pinch of ‘street cred’ can help. These days, PR is one of the most effective ways of communicating with young people — by going in through the back door.
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