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Insights:May I have your attention for six seconds?

August 22, 2017

Pay attention, you may miss the next big marketing format. Lots of big online players, like Google and Facebook, are touting 2018 as the year of the six-second video.

This nano-video format is said to be ideal for reaching millennials and Gen Z consumers. These groups are known, or at least thought, to have an amazingly short attention span.

A recent Microsoft research study puts the modern adult’s attention span at eight seconds. This is a reduction of four seconds from an earlier 2000 study that placed the average attention span at 12 seconds. The blame for our ever-reducing attention span is placed firmly on the proliferation of digital content.

Another reason supporters of the six-second video format say that this is an ideal length is the belief that if a consumer is unfamiliar with your brand, they won’t invest any time watching your messaging.

The six-second spots are a way to introduce your brand without asking for a major time commitment (major being a whopping 15 or even 30 seconds).

The real challenge of this format is being able to distill a marketing story that resonates with the audience’s attention to just a few words or images.

This makes me think about the famous bet that author Ernest Hemingway (there is still doubt by some that it was Hemmingway who wrote this 6-word novel) made that he could write a novel in just six words.

The bet-winning story he wrote said: For sale: baby shoes, never worn.

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