Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Measuring the Human Attention Span for Your Marketing

According to a study by Microsoft, the average human being now has an attention span of eight seconds. This is a sharp decrease from the average attention span of 12 seconds in the year 2000.


Take a minute to soak that in. Now, think carefully about the implications of this for your content marketing strategy:

In a nutshell, this reveals a few quick facts:
  • People do not have enough patience to read through your content or completely watch your webcast.
  • Even when people want to read your content or watch your hour-long Zoom presentation, if it appears too comprehensive they won’t bother reading or watching it at all.
Your brain can only concentrate for 45 minutes! MAX!

A single notification on your phone weakens your ability to focus on a task, researchers at Florida State University found and people who continually check their phones report higher stress levels than those who do it less frequently.

How many hours per day of complete focus do we have? About 3–4 hours, for most people, if they are healthy and well rested. 

Note that most people will spend more time, at least 6–9 hours total, but a lot of this will be resting/meals or less focus intensive tasks like meetings or syncing up with coworkers.


Viewers of Zoom meetings or discussions have bursts of attention, rarely comprehending more than 5% of what is discussed. Distractions are the biggest culprit, especially if you are not one of the people being interviewed or viewed.

Instant gratification is the desire to experience pleasure or fulfillment without delay or deferment. Basically, it's when you want it; and you want it now. Instant gratification is the opposite of what we've been taught and try too hard to practice — delayed gratification.

If you are still building your entire marketing program around long interactions with your target audience, you may want to rethink it. 

If you want to see what is working for today’s customers, simply check out TikTok.com. Be warned, it is so addictive you may find yourself watching it more than doing actual work.


You were warned!

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