Now listen up. I know
this won’t be easy but pay
attention for a few minutes because
I’ve got something important to
share. Attention span averages are falling.

I’ll make it brief: Science
has recently provided more proof
that so much information is coming
at us it’s affecting people’s
attention span. Short attention
spans are a killer.

This supplements Microsoft’s 2015
Research, that the average
attention span of a Goldfish is 9
seconds, but humans now apparently
have an 8 second average. This
report also confirmed, 77% of
people aged 18-24 admitted when
bored, the first thing they did was
reach for their Mobile Phone. On
the positive side here, this may be
good that the number of searches
from mobiles is still rising.

However, this new report from
researchers at a University in
Denmark used a simple mathematical
model of topics (e.g. Content), to
investigate the competing of
collective attention.

Basically producing and reading too much
popular content is exhausting our
limited attention resources (hmmmn
does that mean our small brains).
In the never ending search for
novelty, this causes increasingly
high turnover rates and individual
topics receiving shorter intervals
of attention. Next please.

A very
lengthy report (link below) from
Nature .Com, measured the pace of
of collective attention through the
ebbs and flows of popular topics
and cultural items. By that, they
focused on one dimension of social
acceleration, (the increasing rates
of change within collective

Concern for Twitter Marketers

For those of you on
Twitter here is some more worrying
data: In 2013, a Twitter hash tag
stayed in the top 50 for an average
of 17.5 hours, which then decreased
to 11.9 hours by 2016. This means a
loss of 5.6 hours in 3 years.

They say that the shortened peak of
public interest for one topic is
directly followed by the next
topic, because of the fierce
competition for novelty.

Also, there are too many Top Hashtags
now, which is diluting the effect
and influence because too many
people are using them. Also it
appears Reddit and Wikipedia are
gaining more traction through
increased visits.

Short attention span
attention span average
How to increase attention span
How to increase attention span


Just remember:

Focus on Your audience. It’s not
about you it’s all about them. You
know their needs try and give them
the message they want to hear.

Send the message simply and quickly
by borrowing an idea from Hollywood

  • High concept. This is where
    screenwriters had to convey a new
    film idea very briefly. This was,
    being able to convey the whole film
    idea in less than 25 words, one
    sentence. If you could do it in 10
    to 15 words, even better. There’s
    an old saying in Hollywood: If you
    can’t describe your story in a
    sentence, there’s something wrong
    with the story, says Rob Tobin, a
    successful script doctor. Now I
    really like this idea. Stay
    focused, shorten the message IS the
  • 3. Solve their Problem or
    one part of it
  • Save them Time or Energy.
    What can we do to increase
    the attention span average? We all
    want to improve our skills or
    appearance or diet. Figure out what
    they want to know and tell them HOW
    TO do it.
  • Ideas are all around us
    on Social Media or in Magazine
    Headlines. The Cosmopolitan or Mens
    Health Magazines are fantastic
    examples of problem Headlines and
    content that attracts our attention
    very quickly.
How to increase attention span
attention span
short attention span
Attention span – How to increase it


  • I had better keep it brief.
  • It is official. People’s senses ARE being
    overwhelmed with data and you
    really DO only have a short time to
    attract people to your content.
  • Can you say your idea in Less than 25
    Words, or in fact 10 – 15 words.
  • The study of Twitter was very
    extensive and shows there is so
    much data out there now, that yours
    may not stick around very long
    because so much more is being
    generated all the time.
  • Short attention spans will not endure
    heavy articles. Cut the waffle and
    put out good work.
  • All the best
  • Paul Watts
  • If you like this article or
    found it useful please share
    with a friend on Facebook or
  • Original Articles and
  • Thanks to:
  • Pixabay Images

Paul Watts
Paul Watts

Many years of Life Experience, lastly as a Hotelier and a Coffee Shop and Indian Restaurant owner. I like to try the unusual. Now retired for the last 3 years living the Laptop lifestyle.

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