'Help! How do I explain student finance to 16,000 kids at a rock concert?' blog

This is the discussion to link on the back of Martin's blog. Please read the blog first, as this discussion follows it.




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  • torbrex
    torbrex Posts: 71,340
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    edited 12 July 2011 at 10:35AM
    'Lead Balloon' is the first thing that springs to mind.

    Tell them about free stuff for students and how to get cheap beer, that is about as much as they will listen too and try to get your website address in big letters on the screen behind you, they will see that before they will hear you.
  • whitewing
    whitewing Posts: 11,852
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    Sing it rock style (you don't have to be a good singer), and get them to chant lines back.

    The key thing is that they remember the website and look it up later.
    :heartsmil When you find people who not only tolerate your quirks but celebrate them with glad cries of "Me too!" be sure to cherish them. Because these weirdos are your true family.
  • JimmyTheWig
    JimmyTheWig Posts: 12,199
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    The other difficulty is that 13-15 year olds aren't going to be interested yet. Plus, obviously, half the rest won't be going to university. So you'll be talking to a minority from the start.

    Rather you than me on this one, Martin.

    In fact, as _head_ of the task force, I've only got one suggestion: Delegate!
  • tgroom57
    tgroom57 Posts: 1,431
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    edited 12 July 2011 at 11:00AM
    My first (somewhat cynical ) reaction was: what's to tell them? That if they spend enough they can have the whole lot written off?

    But practical ideas:
    Above are right- they won't be listening to you - but they will pick up any cool new 'places' you can direct them to.
    Website address behind you is great.
    Any chance of getting the QR code on screen behind you? and would it render well enough?
    QR code on ticket /programme / poster at the entrance ?

    You just need to say you know a great website ....and you hope to see them there soon.

    It wouldn't hurt to acknowledge they have more spending power (directly and indirectly) than any other group except hedge fund managers.
  • whitewing
    whitewing Posts: 11,852
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    Further to my post above. Martin, you'll have difficulty coming across as anything other than yourself, and that's your greatest selling point for the students' future.

    How about getting a longer slot than 10 minutes, having a student band (ie going to Uni, meeting new friends, etc etc) with an issue that they can (cheesily) 'think' or 'dream' your input, and then perform your song/message at their own mini-concert.
    :heartsmil When you find people who not only tolerate your quirks but celebrate them with glad cries of "Me too!" be sure to cherish them. Because these weirdos are your true family.
  • JimmyTheWig
    JimmyTheWig Posts: 12,199
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    How about roping in some of the cool people to come on stage with you and do some role play situations. I'd also suggest using concrete examples that the children can relate to rather than getting bogged down with numbers.
    E.g. "Tinchy Stryder (who??) goes to the University of Sheffield for 4 years and then gets a job as a primary school teacher. He'll start paying off his debt after 3 years and will have cleared them 15 years later."
    "Chipmunk (who? - unless you mean Alvin) goes to Cambridge University for 3 years and then gets a job as an investment banker, getting regular promotions. He'll have cleared his debt in 4 years."
    "So and so from Diversity (I've heard of them - yay!) goes into nursing after university and has the remainder of their debts wiped after 30 years."

    If you can't persuede them to go up on stage with you, could you at least get some appropriate photos of them (wearing mortar boards, nurses outfit, etc) for the big screen?
  • 2sides2everystory
    2sides2everystory Posts: 1,744 Forumite
    edited 12 July 2011 at 5:16PM
    Yep. The way it looks right now, lead balloon is where its headed :(

    How about telling them that this damned government conned you into accepting a title that sounds like something out of a World War 2 propaganda pamphlet but that you've just realised its all bollox and you are now dedicating the entire MSE website to achieving a free university education as a basic right by the time your audience needs to think about signing their UCAS forms i.e. give yourself 2 years?

    Never mind 'Cutting your costs, fighting your corner' which is somewhat pejorative and frankly unqualified as a strapline. Dump that and strap your proverb|alls to something exciting again :D

    Reinstate 'Consumer Revenge' sprinkled liberally, so we continue to know exactly where you stand in this world of corporates without reading all your blogs, then get started on carrying "A Free University Education is a Basic Right" until we've got exactly that once more in this country (in fact I've already kicked it off for you in my new signature ;) ... I trust you might agree it is a Top Moneysaving idea)

    Don't resign the taskforce title, just redesign the brief and announce it next week in front of those it affects most. Irresponsible? Says who? Let the government try to stop you.

    You'll soon gain plenty of fans on the day ... get 'em while they're young and teach them good ;)
  • kizziedog
    kizziedog Posts: 99
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    Hi Martin,

    Oh dear....rather you than me!

    Would suggest you do something first to grab their attention. Big bangs to shut them up and direct their attention. Maybe then something like a known guitarist to lead-in your spot.
    Where you go from there???
  • Errata
    Errata Posts: 38,230
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    To be brutally frank it really doesn't matter what you say about finance at the start of a rock concert because none of the kids will be listening. Would you have done at their age ? ;)
    .................:)....I'm smiling because I have no idea what's going on ...:)
  • whitewing
    whitewing Posts: 11,852
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    I don't think it really matters whether they listen or not at that point. I think it will be success enough if they just begin to have an awareness that there is help available to understand finance and where to look it up online.
    :heartsmil When you find people who not only tolerate your quirks but celebrate them with glad cries of "Me too!" be sure to cherish them. Because these weirdos are your true family.
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