On the back windshield of the teenager’s car across the street was painted “Prom?  — Shane”  I thought it was a clever way to ask someone to the big dance.

Apparently, a splashy proposal is required these days.  As social media demands a “post-worthy” event, prom proposals are taking on a life of their own. Gone is the day of a guy asking a girl by her locker; now the ask happens via Jumbotrons, billboards, and even MTV celebrities delivering proposals in person.  Where will it end?

I remember a lot of things about my prom, but how/when he asked is not one of those memories.  Maybe that is because he didn’t spring for the $324 average that “promposals” are costing these days.  Nor did we spend the $919 average on the event itself — I wore a homemade dress (in lovely Qiana faux-silk polyester — that I still have!), had a simple bouquet, we drove a regular car and went out to a normal restaurant.  No limousine, designer gown, overnight stay or over-the top expenses.  And it was a blast.

But if your organization is serving teenagers, keep this mania in mind.  If they received a promprosal via Jumbotron, then they may want more from you than a simple letter announcing their acceptance into college or receipt of a large scholarship. Or if you are trying to woo summer employees, perhaps you need to up your game in how you recruit for them or recognize them as employee of the month.

Like the plant in Little Shop of Horrors, the social media beast continuously wants to be fed.  What memorable content can you feed it?

— beth triplett

Source: ‘Promposals” memorable, but usually not cheap by Joseph Pisani for the Associated Press in the Telegraph Herald, April 26, 2015, p. 4B 

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