The world is a busy place. As technology has advanced over the years, more and more stimuli are positioned to compete for our attention throughout the day. We may spend five seconds…or even less…evaluating new information or input before moving on to the next thing.

This becomes a real challenge for people who are marketing a business. You want to get your message out to potential paying customers, but your window of opportunity seems so short.

The good news, though, is that the reward for holding your customer’s attention longer is significant in terms of their recall. Recall rates spike consistently in the first 5 seconds, 10 seconds, and all the way through 30 seconds. Once we hit about 40-60 seconds of exposure, the recall benefits start to level off.

What does this mean for a business owner who wants to warm leads for potential sales?

It means being creative about ways to keep your audience with you. Lead them to more materials for a volume of impressions. Build a plan for making all your audience’s interactions with your business meaningful.

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The really good news is that you can develop a plan for this. You are the one planning out your marketing messages to your different target markets. So, as part of your plan, how do you craft the message in such a way that it leads to the next message in the same sitting? Can you create a visual that your audience will need to scan? A story that they will want to hear or read to the end? A video that will compel them longer? Can you make an accessible link to other material that they are now primed for? Check out last week’s tip for more thoughts on how to keep your audience with you longer.

The reward to you for their extra time spent in exploration is that their capacity to recall your brand increases dramatically.

And, if we are really being smart about marketing, we are focusing on the marathon…not the sprint. We know that it can take multiple touches with the same customer to warm the lead and generate a sale, but the longer you can keep that lead with you on each occasion, the more work his/her brain is doing to remember your brand.

Interested in reading more about the science behind this? Check out this study by Goldstein, McAfee, and Suri.

And if you want to start building a marketing funnel for your business, check out my Marketing Funnel Worksheet. This guide will help you set up the levels of your funnel so you know the path you will lead your customers down. Having a solid marketing funnel for your business will allow you to convert more of your audience and improve your sales.