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    Cutting Through the Noise: The Attention Economy (Part II)

    In Part I of our publication, we summarized some striking highlights from Dr. Karen Nelson-Field’s latest research on attention in the digital economy. 

    Attention in the age of distraction is not the focused version marketers idealize. With it constantly switching in and out, here is what else brand owners should consider to leverage the specific media attributes:

    • Each attentive second leads to the brand staying 3 days in memory. Attention and memory are not the same thing, therefore brands need to teach consumers what that ad is for at peak attention moments. New findings reveal that attention and ad decay are related, i.e. the more attention paid, the longer the brand stays in memory.
    • Calculate active attention seconds CPM (aaCPM): This is the value that marketers should be trying to push. It tells us whether performance differences between platforms using active attention as the baseline are accounted for by cost. Given the relative performance against the value that we have with the unit price, this gives us a clue of what our spend allocation across platforms should be.
    • Go for reach and visibility with whichever platform you can afford. All visibility elements influence attention. This varies significantly by platform and format. Elements include: pixels (proportion of ad on screen), coverage (proportion of the screen the ad covers, in %) and time. Data shows conclusively that there is a difference in advertising impact above and below 2 seconds and this is consistent, i.e. no platform is immune, especially TV.
    • Time viewed vs. time in view: Advertisers pay for time in view (proxy for “eyes on ad”). It, however, can equally mean viewer distraction. In reality, what advertisers get is about half in terms of eyes on the ad itself – and this is the difference between actual human attention and proxies.

    Undoubtedly, no brand strategy can be all unicorns and roses. However, in an ever-changing advertising and media ecosystem, knowing how to navigate attention and using it to improve ROI sounds like a surefire strategy against clutter and wasted budgets. Stay tuned as we are going to present the attention-related metrics of SmartAdd soon.