Tonight I took an opportunity to audit a course at Clark University called, "Marketing to You". I learned about the course by reading an article posted on LinkedIn about Clark alum, Lawrence Norman '94, MBA '95, who returned to the college after a 20 year career as a Marketing Executive at Adidas. He created the course to teach students how to market specifically to the 18-20 year old range, as he had trouble during his career finding people who were tuned into this demographic.
Your class focuses on marketing to high schoolers and college students. Why is that demographic so important?
That age range controls the most wealth in the United States. Fourteen- to 19-year-old kids control about 18 percent of the wealth in the U.S., and that’s because they influence their parents, as well as their younger brothers and sisters. People also aspire to follow the trends that a 16- or 17-year-old kid is setting — music, fashion, sports, technology. Those teenagers also become brand-loyal. That’s the consumer who is really critical to these big companies.
Norman has invited a range of high profile marketing guest speakers including tonight's guest, Uli Becker, Former CEO of Reebok. Becker spoke about being involved with Reebok's world-dominating marketing team and took questions from students in the class. Students taking the class come from different majors across various disciplines and they were engaged and eager to introduce themselves to Becker. Students also waited their turn to speak personally with Norman during the class "intermission".
I was able to observe the class after reaching out to Norman on LinkedIn because I'm currently completing my graduate certificate in Cannabis Regulatory Affairs at Clark and marketing to the 18-25 year olds in the cannabis industry will be an interesting task. Throughout the certificate program I studied volumes of data that show cannabis is not healthy for the developing brain of the under 25 year old. My goal as a marketing professional in the industry will be to empower this age group (and all demographics) by creating an educated and informed consumer who can independently choose recreational and/or medicinal treatments in a responsible way. I am so excited to embark on this career and hope you will all join me and learn about the unbelievable healing potential of this medicinal plant when used correctly.
To learn more about Norman and his class, visit https://clarknow.clarku.edu/2020/01/29/marketer-turned-professor-lawrence-norman-takes-aim-at-influential-youth-demographic/.
Myself pictured with Ulysses Youngblood, cannabis entrepreneur, and Uli Becker, Former CEO of Reebok.