How to Get Your Audience’s Attention in the First 5 Seconds
Your attention span is shorter than a goldfish.
Yes, you heard me. If you believe the researchers in Canada, Your attention span is now less than the brain of the humble and often derided goldfish.
So what does that have to do with your corporate video? It means you need to grab your viewers attention and hold onto it or risk being overlooked. In this post I’m going to give you my best advice for grabbing, and holding onto peoples attention so you can create engaging video that viewers will want to watch.
I’m here, what do you want?
One of the best things you can do to keep people from clicking away is to be up front and clear about what your video contains and what they’ll get out of it. People decide very quickly if something is worth their time and if they have to stick around just to see why they’re sticking around then… well… they won’t stick around. If the title of the video doesn’t make it clear, or if there isn’t one, then it’s worth opening the video with a line describing what viewers are in for. It doesn’t need to be comprehensive, just a line, but your audience will thank you for it.
Ask a question
Asking a question is a great way to get people interested. Wanting closure to a question is often enough to keep somebody watching as long as the question is relevant and genuine. If you know the audience well enough to pre-empt a question they might ask then this will obviously be valuable to that audience. But asking a question that they might not have thought of is just as good. Research is the key with this approach – pose a question that everyone knows or can guess the answer to won’t get you far.
This one is less to do with the content of your video and more relevant to the mechanics of presenting your video on the web. If you’ve ever gone to watch a video and found it wouldn’t stop buffering before you gave up and clicked away, you’ll know why this is so important. Video hosting services like Youtube and Vimeo will automatically make smaller versions of your video to cater for people with slower internet connections. We use the same approach with our own hosting when we create videos for clients and it means that viewers will see the best quality that their connection can handle. Beyond this, if you organise your own hosting then it’s best to test your video on a few different devices, using different browsers, just to be safe.
Give them what they came for
You may have heard the term ‘content is king’ before. This is certainly applicable to video if you’re looking to hold somebody’s attention. It means that your audience will appreciate information that they find valuable or entertaining. By watching your video, your audience is investing their time. We’re a fickle and unforgiving bunch so don’t expect somebody to invest their time again if you aren’t offering anything of value. It boils down to researching your audience and delivering them something that they’ll appreciate.