The Government has just introduced a new Automated Enforcement System that allows for just two seconds from when the traffic light goes from amber to red before the camera catches you committing a traffic offence.
In comparison, the average Internet user has an attention span of 10 seconds. That’s just eight seconds more to capture the attention of a potential customer, partner or fan. Not much time, is there?
Or maybe there is. Think about it; how long does it take for you to notice someone who’s attractive (in whatever way you define the word) when they walk into the room? Or react to a really good bargain? Or find the shortest line at the supermarket check-out counter? The point is, if you know what you’re looking for, what to expect or what you’re interested in, you’re likely to take notice of it and stay focused on it.
And that’s what you do when it comes to your website, your Facebook fan page, your brochure, your menu, even your signboard. What is your audience looking for? What are they expecting? What do you want them to want from you? The more you give them what they’re looking for, the more likely they’ll continue reading your content, interacting with your page, exploring your outlet and talking to your people. EVEN IF THEY HAVE SOMEHOW DECIDED THAT 10 SECONDS IS ALL THEY’LL GIVE YOU.
Start by identifying what you’re about. Make it simple and clear. Keep to what’s true about you. “You have two seconds before we catch you running a red light” is pretty straightforward, unambiguous and above board. “A sophisticated surveillance system for better traffic control” probably wouldn’t be as easy to comprehend.
“Find out all you need to know about buying a property” is putting all your cards on the table. “Detailed, insightful content by unbiased independent experts” just wouldn’t be telling the whole story.
“Our job is to make you laugh” seriously hits the spot, with minimal fuss. “The world’s largest collection of gags, jokes and funny stories” isn’t much of a punch line.
Essentially, when you learn to engage your audience with things that matter to them, 10 seconds is an eternity.
So, isn’t it time your audience spent more time on you?