The case for keeping it short

Want to reach your audience? Think about what it’s like to be them.

I’m bombarded.

Customers are bombarded with marketing messages

How many tweets, posts, videos do I see every day? If you want me to see your marketing message (whether it’s an email, an ad, or a YouTube video, or a Tweet) it has to stand out from the crowd. Think about the court case story we’ve all seen in the movies. Whenever a lawyer has to disclose evidence they don’t want to disclose – they bury it in a mountain of paperwork. It’s meant as a stall tactic so the opposing team can’t act on it.

You may not intend to, but the more you bury your key message, the more you’re stalling me from purchasing your goods and services.

Tip: Keep it short and sweet!

I have the attention span of a gnat.

With so many media messages bombarding me, it’s not surprising I can only focus on something for a few seconds (not to mention the fact that studies show people can’t be effective if they try to multitask). So, say “buh-bye” to me if your story, article, video, Facebook post doesn’t grab my attention quickly.

Tip: You have about 8 seconds to capture a reader’s attention. Use your time wisely!

I live in a microwave society.

Like it or not, we want things, and we want them NOW. A baked potato used to take 60 minutes! in a conventional oven. Today, if your message doesn’t grab my attention in 8 seconds, you may have missed your chance.

Tip: Make sure your information loads fast and is easy to understand. Give me what I want when I want it!

Mixed messages.

Since we know I’m bombarded, have a short attention span, and want it right now, it makes sense to be really clear in what you’re offering. What is it that you’re asking me to do? Don’t make me wade through lots of descriptive copy to figure it out. Focus, focus, focus!

Tip: Clearly define what you want me to do and make it easy for me. If you want me to buy a product, give me an easy way to do it. Which button below is better?

Confusing call to action

A simple buy button can be a great “call to action.”