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Eight seconds, that’s the time you have to capture people’s attention, according to a study from the Technical University of Denmark. That means by the time you have read this sentence; your attention could be gone. 

What’s more, our post-COVID world has not been kind to marketers, leading to moderate to significant budget cuts. That means brands must find other means to reach customers. 

For brands to continue to vie for customers’ attention, they’ll have to pull out all of the stops. That is where attention marketing comes in. 

If you’re looking for ways to engage your audience, build brand awareness, and increase your customer base, read on to discover what attention marketing can do for your brand. 


What Is Attention Marketing? 

First coined by entrepreneur Steve Jelley describes a cost-effective strategy to capture a customer’s attention through engaging and thought-provoking messages. Seth Godin popularized the term in his book Purple Cow

Attention marketing is a form of marketing that attempts to engage and acquire new customers through unconventional means, often through social media.


How to Use Attention Marketing

Because social media is often a driver of attention marketing, it makes sense that this form of marketing should be easily digestible, engaging, and worth sharing. Therefore, its sole purpose is grabbing someone’s attention, but it should have a vehicle attached to it to learn more. 

Great attention marketing should get a user’s attention, yes, but it should also create the urgency to perform an action. That could be anything from: 

  • Subscribe to an email list
  • Read a blog post
  • Download an Ebook
  • Watch a video
  • Purchase a product

While attention marketing is excellent to pique a customer’s interest, its real value lies in creating action off of social media.


Tips for Using Attention Marketing

There are several ways that you can engage your audience and acquire new customers using attention marketing. Here are a few tips you can use: 


  1. Create Snackable Content

Today’s consumers continuously deal with information overload. That’s what makes this first tactic so successful. 

Snackable content is like it sounds. It’s fun, short, meaningful content that is easily digestible. Snackable content educates your audience without taking up too much time.

Here is an excellent example from Steven Johnson. He used a short video to promote his new book. Notice how this short whiteboard video entertains, educates, and provides action. 

Snackable content uses a few simple components: 

  • Defines problems and offers solutions
  • Offers a source of expert information
  • Engages the audience through bite-sized pieces

Part of the beauty of snackable content is its simplicity. You can create many snackable pieces to rise above other brands in your space. 


2. GIFs and Memes

If you’re on social media, you’ve undoubtedly seen the power of GIFs and memes. Short and easily digestible, they can make us laugh, think, or consider a new perspective. Due to their quick suggestion, they connect with audiences and offer opportunities to go viral. 

The most notable example of this is the Bernie Inauguration Memes. These memes started innocently, then became user-generated on such a massive level that they quickly went viral. 

Bernie used the popularity of the memes to create merchandise, raising 1.8 million dollars for food-sensitive Vermonters

All age demographics enjoy GIFS and Memes. That makes them an excellent resource for attention marketing campaigns. 

Other attention marketing ideas include: 

  • Writing compelling copy
  • Using viral strategies
  • Marketing off of current trends
  • Using interactive content like polls


Attention Marketing Creates Strong Social Media Branding

We hope that this short guide gives you some ideas on how to engage your audience and acquire new customers with attention marketing. If your social media game isn’t as strong as you’d like, you can always outsource your attention marketing campaigns.