How to win by getting people’s attention.

People have short attention spans.  Their attention span is even shorter when they see something they weren’t looking for (I’m looking at you 100% of in-browser advertising).  Winning attention is all about gaining recognition.  Your goal should be for people to organically realize you exist and what you do (whether you are an employee, sales person or corporate marketer).

Many times we try for the big win – a one-day training course, 15 five minute videos going into detail, a PPT training guide with 500 words per page.  None of these capture the imagination or catch attention.  They are too much, too big.  You have to earn their attention first, give them a reason to pay attention.  Hit them with 100 valuable tweets over a year – maybe they pay attention to 2 or 3 and remember you.  Give them a 5 year archive of blog posts – maybe they go through and read 20 in a day because something catches their eye.  Put your logo out there as sponsor of different events so that they see your interests are the same as theirs.

The little things matter more than the big things.  Anyone can write a one-time 5 page white paper on a bored Saturday.  Not everyone cares enough to show their daily interest on Twitter.  Not every company invests in promoting their ideas.  Not every employee puts themselves out there with new ideas.

Big events and productions come in after you have their attention.  But attention is hard to win and even harder to keep.  Are you willing to put in the work it takes?


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