It’s a war out there – a war for attention. In this episode, Chris Bruno dives into the attention war and what it means in practice for businesses and their digital marketing. 

So what is the attention war? We all talk about content. We all talk about blogging. And we all know that these things form integral parts of everything that we do online. The problem is everybody else knows that. Everybody else feels the same way. So what’s actually happening?

Chris digs into what it means, what businesses can do, and why busy marketing channels like social media are still a bigger opportunity than ever. It’s all in the right approach.

Hope you enjoy the episode. Please subscribe, rate and review, and find us @AllAboutDigMar on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram to share your thoughts.

Show Notes

  • Why there’s an attention war [01:11]
  • What Chris means by “attention war” [02:28]
  • Channels change, principles don’t [03:36]
  • Data is the new oil, and attention is diamonds [05:47]
  • The reality (and mindboggling stats) behind the battle for attention [08:38]
  • Why the key is to focus on the right people and hone in on your audience [09:40]

Stuff We Mentioned

14 – Attention War.mp3

Introduction: [00:00:00] Welcome to the All About Digital Marketing podcast. The show all about digital marketing. Brought to you by Social INK, the digital marketing agency specialising in social media and content marketing for brave brands and forward-thinking SMEs. I’m your host, Chris Bruno, and as always we’re here to bring you the most actionable tips, tricks, tools, and insights to help you achieve MORE when it comes to your digital marketing. You can find all the show notes and all the episodes on If you enjoy the show, feel free to subscribe. And of course, share with a friend who you think might find this useful.

Chris Bruno [00:00:53] Hi everybody. Welcome to the latest episode of the All About Digital Marketing podcast. I’m your host Chris Bruno. And today I wanted to take a moment to talk to you about what I believe is the biggest attention war we’ve ever seen.

Chris Bruno [00:01:08] Let me explain a little bit. We all talk about social media. We all talk about content. We all talk about blogging. And we all know that these things form integral parts of everything that we do online. The problem is everybody else knows that. Everybody else feels the same way. So what’s actually happening? The truth is when we look at the online space today and we look at the new channels that have been presented to us. They bring about the biggest single opportunity that has ever existed for small to midsize businesses.

Chris Bruno [00:01:37] The opportunity to be able to publish, record, distribute, promote, show, share, showcase. Everything is available to us. That was just absolutely impossible. Only a small time ago, 10-15 years ago. Think about it this way. Right now in your pocket you probably have an iPhone, a Samsung, some form of a smartphone that gives you the ability to simply click on a few buttons and to be directly broadcasting live video in HD quality straight from your phone to a potential audience like Facebook for example. Where 1.5 Billion people congregate on a daily basis.

Chris Bruno [00:02:21] These sorts of actions and these sorts of possibilities come with a little bit of a downside. What I call the attention war is the fact that brands and businesses today are no longer competing with their competitors. Let me explain. If you imagine that you, me, everybody, is trying to gauge the same amount of attention from the same people. That means that we’re all in competition for this attention. Think about it in the sense of, whether you sell sneakers or whether you sell car washes, it doesn’t matter. We’re all trying to get our adverts, our content, our social media posts, in front of potential buyers. The result of this means that if we take away the niche, the industry the product, the service that we sell and that we offer, and we look at it in pure terms. And simple terms. We’ve all become publishers. And in fact, because we’re all publishers, we’re all fighting each other to get our publications out there.

Chris Bruno [00:03:26] The channels may have changed. We’re not talking about print. We’re not talking about local newspaper. We’re not talking about magazines or TV ads. We’re talking about social media. But the principles and the principles behind everything that we do when it comes to marketing haven’t changed. Not in five years. Not in ten years. Not even in six months. Creating great content and getting people’s attention and keeping that attention is a huge part of any successful marketing campaign today.

Chris Bruno [00:03:56] Let’s talk a little bit about the stats. I’ve mentioned the 1.5 Billion daily active users on Facebook. Think about that for a second. 1.5 Billion daily active users. That’s just over a quarter of the complete global population. Let that sink in for a moment. Imagine if you’re a business and you’re looking for 10 new clients, 100 new clients, a thousand new clients. Regardless of what the number is. The chances of you being able to find those people on a channel like Facebook are gonna be pretty high if you’re doing the right thing.

Chris Bruno [00:04:32] Let’s be honest when we’re talking about 100 people, 100 potential new clients. Facebook has just given you, handed to you on a silver platter, a congregated audience of one point five billion people. There’s no real excuse to not be able to find 100 people. It’s a little bit of a needle in a haystack maybe when you don’t know what you’re doing. But that doesn’t change the fact that those 100 people are definitely on there. And there’s probably varying 100 people for all small businesses and mid-sized businesses that are out there.

Chris Bruno [00:05:03] Take Instagram for example. Instagram is a billion active monthly users. Now when we look at those two numbers we’re talking in billions. This is very hard to comprehend. This is a huge amount of people. This isn’t Wembley Stadium full. This is literally huge. A seventh of the population every month will go on Instagram at least once. Taking it a step back and when I talk about being a publisher over competing against your competitors. There’s more than 60 million Facebook pages. These are pages that are for organizations, charitable organizations, businesses, brands, personal brands, influencers, for whatever reason. But these are your real competitors and there’s a lot of them.

Chris Bruno [00:05:47] Today everyone talks about data being the new oil. The reality is if data is the new oil and this is the true new asset of the world, then attention is basically diamonds or gold. Vying for somebodies attention is hard. It requires effort. And it requires building a relationship and building that trust with this audience. It’s very hard to be able to distinguish yourself from 60 million other pages. If all you’re doing is quickly doing something on the fly, posting something generic, sharing somebody else’s content, and not really giving people a flavour of who you are and what you do.

Chris Bruno [00:06:29] Let’s put it this way. Forty nine percent of all users on Facebook are on somebody’s Facebook page, on a brand’s Facebook page, because they want to support that brand. Let that sink in for a second. That’s 49 percent. Of well over one point five billion people who use this on a daily basis, are actually connected to a brand in some way on a Facebook page. They’re doing that because they resonate with that brand. They feel like they have something in common with that brand. They feel like they can enjoy, trust, build a relationship, continue this relationship with this brand. And that’s a huge part of everything that you do in digital marketing.

Chris Bruno [00:07:13] Talking about what we do on digital marketing. Try and think outside the box. Instead of simply reposting, re sharing, or doing something super generic. Why not take the time to start actually creating content for that audience? Whether you need to build the audience because you’re just starting or whether you already have an audience. What’s important is really creating content that is for them. If you can create content that really resonates with them, the chances are they’re going to pay more attention. Because it’s going to fit into who they are and what they do. Watching some stand-up the other day and I watched Jimmy Carr. And somebody asked him a question: Who’s your favourite comedian. And he says me. Well if you think about it, it’s exactly my sense of humour.

Chris Bruno [00:08:01] The reality is when we’re talking to our clients and when we’re talking to our audience. If we are their persona, if we resonate with their persona, if we are similar in our beliefs in what we do and who we are. The truth is those people will engage and they will become part of that following and they will enjoy that brand. The reason why it’s an attention war is simply put the huge amounts of content that is being created on a daily basis. I’m going to try and put this into terms that help you to kind of see that the majesty of what I’m talking about. But on Facebook alone there’s more than 40,000 posts every single second. 40000 posts a second. Anytime you go onto your news feed, you can see what your friends are doing, what businesses and pages that you’re following are doing, what’s been going on in the latest group that you’ve joined, and all sorts of other things from things for sale for jobs that are available, Facebook watch for video streaming.

Chris Bruno [00:09:05] It’s a hugely hugely clustered amount of content in one go. And if you’re seeing that, then every single one of your potential audience is also seeing the same amount of content. So what you now need to realize is by being in this attention war, you need to do more for your audience. You need to stand out more than your competitors. Which is everybody else who is currently posting including your friend’s personal Facebook, pages, brands, groups whatever it might be. And this is a huge part of it.

Chris Bruno [00:09:40] In an episode recently I talked with Nick Entwistle from One Minute Briefs. Nick’s been in creative pretty much his entire career and he’s managed to build a 20000 person plus community filled with very very specifically creative people. People who want to be creative and people who want to take part every single day. Nick talked about it in a different way which was: nobody cares about you. And what he was trying to say by that is that your brand has no right to have attention. It has no reason for anybody to buy into it and to believe in it. Or to become part of it, unless you give them one. And actually what he said was it all comes down to how you make them care. And the reality is the best way to make people care is to actually share with them on their level. Meeting them at their needs, of who they are, of what they like, of what they think, and how you create that content is up to you.

Chris Bruno [00:10:40] This can be images it can be video. It can be text. It can be links. It can be whatever you want it to be but make it you and find that core. What Seth Godin calls minimum viable audience, who are really buying into you and who you are. Because that’s what’s going to make a shift in your business. If we talk about a mid-sized product, the chances are a hundred people will change – It’s a game changer for that business. A hundred new clients is enormous. For small margin products it might be a thousand, or ten thousand. For high ticket prices, it could only be five or six people that make the difference. From trying to make good, trying to get through the month, trying to make sure that you’ve got that balance every month, to actually thriving every month.

Chris Bruno [00:11:27] So you look at how you’re creating content. Remember that your content needs to be just as good as not just your competitors, but everybody else is out there. It needs to be true to who you are and it needs to resonate with your audience and with the target that you’re trying to get access to. If it doesn’t. The truth is you’re going to lose the attention war. And this is something that I really don’t want to see you do. So guys if you’ve got any questions feel free to hit me up on Twitter you can find me at @justchrisbruno. And if you want to have a chat with us in terms of whatever it is that you’re trying to do, whatever it is that you’re struggling with. Go check out It’s our brand new platform that’s made especially for small to midsize businesses to help them understand how they can get involved with and how they can battle with this attention will. Thank you very much everyone. We’ll see you soon.

Chris Bruno [00:12:22] Thanks for listening. We hope you’re enjoying the All About Digital Marketing podcast brought to you by Social INK, the dstributed digital marketing agency specialising in social media marketing and content marketing for brave brands and forward-thinking SMEs. When it comes to your social media marketing, we understand that not all businesses are ready to work with an agency. The resources and the budgets required don’t always fit into an SME’s plan. If this is the case for you, we have some great news. We’ve recently developed a social media coaching platform that gives you access to an agency team at a fraction of the cost. Tired of not getting results from your social media efforts? Now is the time to do something about it. Find out more on our website.

Chris Bruno [00:13:10] We look forward to seeing you there.

Music by Hani Koi from Fugue