We’re all Goldfish

Back in March, I was lucky to hear Sally Hogshead speak at the Art of Marketing conference in Toronto.

A comment Sally made really stuck with me. Sally mentioned that our attention spans are roughly the same length as a goldfish’s.

A goldfish.

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“The addictive nature of web browsing can leave you with an attention span of nine seconds — the same as a goldfish.” ~ BBC News

Think about that for a moment.

Think about the way you surf the web and jump from site to site.

Think about how you look at Facebook everyday. Within seconds, we have a pretty decent glimpse at the lives of hundreds of friends.

Think about your online habits. How you get your news online. Do you skim headlines and scroll through articles?

Now take a moment and think about how these habits we’ve developed online have influenced our habits in the offline world.

Pretty much the same right?

We can click through channels on TV like it’s nobody’s business.

So what’s the big deal with being a goldfish?

Well, nothing really. This post doesn’t really apply to the goldfish.  (most have swam away already)

This post is really intended for the fisherman (business owners, marketers, advertisers, etc.).

You can’t just stick your line in the water and expect to catch some fish anymore. Next time you’re working on a promotion, advertisement, or message for your business, think about the goldfish.

P.S. You can read Sally’s take on the goldfish here.