The phrase ‘memory of a goldfish’ is very misleading. The New York Times published a story this year which stated that the human attention span is now just eight seconds long – which is considerably shorter than that of a goldfish. The average human is exposed to around 5000 to 10,000 ads per day; this has increased drastically in the last decade. Considering this overwhelming number of adverts we see on a daily basis, it’s not surprising that we cannot recall even a small percentage of them.

Red Fish
The human brain has adapted to ignore ads. If you noticed every ad you saw, it would probably be hard to get anything else done in the day! This clutter makes it excruciatingly difficult for brands to stand out to a consumer. The fragmentation in the world of advertising has become so overwhelming to the human brain that it’s impacting the effectiveness of well-designed adverts which in theory should get noticed.

The noise and oversaturation of advertising is a real problem for advertisers. People’s brains have switched off. With competition through the roof and consumers’ attention span diving further down than a goldfish’s, how do brands ever shout loud enough to be heard? Advertisements must now provoke a stronger-than-ever emotion from the audience. It’s not enough to rely on them to passively see your advert, because the truth is, they won’t. To draw an audience in and interact with their emotions or feelings actively holds a better chance of provoking response than anything else.

Man Wearing Brown Suit Jacket Mocking on White Telephone
Advertisers need to connect authentically with their audience, or there’s not much point trying to connect with them at all. Old school approaches aren’t effective, so what can we do? Consumers just want brands to be accessible when they have a problem that needs solving. A lot of brands are guilty of ignoring this and focusing on themselves and producing something ‘cool’ too often. At Pet Subjects, we make sure our main priority is ensuring you are at the forefront of a consumer’s mind when they need you.

Grabbing attention quickly is much easier said than done (it is technically easier to grab a goldfish’s). If you aren’t unique with your message and content, how do you expect to shout over the clutter? Unfortunately, while being different is great, it is still probably not enough to grab attention on a large scale.

Eggs in Tray on White Surface
You must be different, but with meaning. Don’t let the message you are trying to portray get lost in an abundance of pointlessness. It is near impossible, but it works when done right. Going off on a tangent of randomness in a bid to generate engagement is an easy thing to do. At Pet Subjects we have an experienced team who can help you find the strategy that works for your brand, without losing the original message you want your audience to receive.

Personalisation is a fantastic way to grab attention; including this in your creative content can be effective. If someone shouts your name in the street, you’d turn around; the same principle applies when its in your email inbox, or incorporated into an ad. It doesn’t have to be a name or address: it can be someone’s favourite sport, holiday, car, website and so on. Something personal to the individual can provoke all the right emotions in them. You can find this information through online cookies.

Person Using Smartphone
A lot of brands have adapted the tactic of shock advertising into their content. Although this may be a shortcut to grabbing attention, it can be extremely controversial, and often causes far more hassle than it’s worth. Charities tend to implement this method into their creative content often, to provoke a reaction out of people. Traditionally, this works because the message becomes deeply lodged into someone’s conscience, which eventually drives them to act on something. But they can attract a lot of complaints if they cause too much upset, which will reflect awfully on the brand. Luckily, brands seem to have acknowledged that it’s often too risky, so you don’t see as much of it anymore. Although sometimes they work (I bet you can think of a few now), it is just a shortcut to doing the job properly.

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At Pet Subjects, after 28 years in the business, we know what works, and what doesn’t. We have a full creative team which can tend to your brand’s individual needs, primarily to drive the outcome you desire. We’ll put your brand where you need to be at the right time. Our team are always welcoming for a chat. Together, we will extend your audience’s attention span! Contact us on 01276 858 880, or browse the services we offer here.