“You now have a shorter attention span than a goldfish” reads the Time Magazine headline, reporting on a 2015 study that found, “since the year 2000 (or about when the mobile revolution began) the average attention span dropped from 12 seconds to eight seconds.”
The average attention span of a goldfish is nine seconds.
Other researchers have shown that on average people spend 2.8 seconds reading most content, about the time it takes to read a 140-character tweet.
So how do you get your messages heard? The answer is you make your social media content “snackable.”
Snackable Content is Bite-Sized, Tasty, and Easy to Digest
To reach the widest audience, your social media content should be short, engaging and with a simple message. Two quick tips:
1. Keep your sentences short. Studies show that tweets of 100 characters have a 17% higher engagement rate than tweets that run closer to Twitter’s 140-character limit. Facebook users have an even shorter attention span; posts of 80 characters or less saw 66% higher engagement.
2. Include images. While it’s great to paint a picture with vivid language, that’s tough when you’re limited to just a few words, so make it a priority to include relevant visuals too — a photo, an infographic, a chart, or another type of graphic with any online content. Particularly with social media, visuals have a huge impact on how much attention your content will get:
- Hubspot reports that Facebook posts with images see 2.3x more engagement than those without images.
- On Twitter, people are 3x more likely to engage with tweets that include photos or videos.
If you don’t have something handy, a few minutes of online searching will reveal options for free or low-priced images, such as unsplash.com.
You’re sharing content for a reason — why not get your audience’s attention by making yours a healthy snack?
If I can help, please reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org.