The digital revolution we’ve experienced over the past few decades has drastically changed how we consume media. We are constantly being targeted as consumers, whether it be through print, web, social media, or television. As recent as the 1970’s, the average person experienced up to 500 advertisements per day, while today that number has jumped to 5,000.1 This overexposure has changed the way we process advertisements, allowing us to more-or-less “tune out” content aimed at us. Advertisers today struggle with not only grabbing the consumer’s attention, but also holding it. From 2000 to 2015 alone, the average person’s attention span dropped from 12 seconds to 8.25 seconds. This officially makes us less attentive than the average goldfish, with a span of 9 seconds.2
So how do we cut through the clutter and reach an audience that doesn’t want to be reached? Following these guidelines to make your brand stand out.
Be Mobile Friendly
Smartphones have given us the power to access endless information at any time simply by reaching into our pocket, and 80% of internet users own one.3 To maximize your web content audience, it’s essential that it’s responsive, adjusts to the size of the screen or browser. It’s difficult to persuade a user to take interest and actively make the decision to click on your site, making maximum accessibility a priority. Today’s search engine algorithms also favor websites that are responsive, increasing your likelihood of drawing in users.
Utilize Social Media
Embrace social media as a growing advertisement tool. The number of social media users worldwide exceed over 2 billion, providing excellent platforms to promote your business.4 Social networks such as Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook are an effective and easy way to reach consumers. These platforms also allow you to use social media influencers to advocate for your products and services. 92% of consumers’ report trusting word of mouth advertising over branded content, making social media influencers very persuasive.5
Personalize to Your Consumer
Once a user accesses your website or advertisement, you have less than seconds to hold their attention. If you can’t quickly peak their interest, they will leave immediately. For this reason, it’s important to make your content as attractive and digestible as possible.
-Avoid text heavy pages and advertisements. Too much text looks busy and intimidating, and repels consumers. Keep in mind that users scan, not read, when faced with text. The brain scans in a capital “F” shape across the page, so plot out your key information accordingly.6
-Add novelty to your content. Make sure your advertisements are well designed and appealing to the eye. You won’t be able to convey the importance of your message without first drawing in your audience. Use eye catching elements such as photos, art, animations, and unique fonts. Don’t clutter your page, but make it attractive and interesting to the viewer.
Engage Your Audience
-Interactivity is a great tool to engage your audience. Interactive content hooks a user and allows them to fully experience your site, and gives them a better understanding of your business. These features can come in simple forms such as short online quizzes, polls, live feeds, and interactive videos.
-Use videos as an effective tool for pulling in users via social media or the web. Video can be great for grabbing the attention of an audience, but be sure the content is concise and entertaining. Studies show that online videos can only sustain the attention of users for about 60 seconds.7 Keep clips short and to the point, as your viewer could lose interest very quickly.