The Engagement Hierarchy: Maximizing Growth and Impact in a Distracted World


Hatched by Glasp

Sep 22, 2023

4 min read


The Engagement Hierarchy: Maximizing Growth and Impact in a Distracted World

In today's digital age, where information is constantly bombarding us and our attention spans are dwindling, it has become increasingly important for businesses and individuals to optimize their strategies for engagement and growth. This article aims to explore two key aspects of this challenge: the importance of core actions in driving product success, and the art of brevity in capturing and retaining audience attention. By understanding and implementing these principles, we can navigate the crowded online landscape and make a meaningful impact.

At the core of any successful product or platform lies a set of core actions that define its purpose and value. These actions are the very essence of the product and without them, the product would lose its identity. Take Pinterest, for example. The act of pinning is what makes Pinterest unique and without it, the platform would cease to exist. Similarly, Twitter relies on the core action of tweeting. However, it's not just about users performing these actions; it's about the engagement that follows. Without people reading, liking, and replying to tweets, the value of the platform diminishes. Therefore, while it may be tempting to focus solely on increasing the total number of users, it is crucial to ensure that these users are actively completing the core action and engaging with others. Otherwise, the growth achieved will be superficial and unsustainable.

In a world inundated with information and distractions, capturing and retaining audience attention has become an art form. People no longer consume content in the same way they used to. Instead of reading deeply and thoroughly, they skim and share. This behavior poses a challenge for content creators and marketers who are constantly trying to make an impact. Studies have shown that even when individuals consciously choose to read something, they spend an average of just 26 seconds looking at it. The University of California Irvine found that if someone gets distracted during this brief attention span, it takes them a staggering 20 minutes to refocus. This highlights the need for concise and impactful messaging.

The key to overcoming this challenge lies in the art of smart brevity. When crafting content, it is essential to distill the core message into a single, memorable point. Instead of overwhelming the audience with unnecessary information, focus on what truly matters. Start with the "why" - why does this message matter? What is the one thing you want the audience to remember? By honing in on this one thing, you can deliver a powerful and concise message that cuts through the noise and captures attention. In a cluttered world, the greatest gift we can give ourselves and others is their time back. By respecting and valuing people's time, we can make a lasting impact.

So, how can we apply these principles to drive growth and engagement? Here are three actionable pieces of advice:

  • 1. Prioritize core actions: Instead of solely focusing on increasing the number of users, prioritize the number of users completing the core action. Understand what drives engagement and optimize your product or platform to enhance the user experience around these actions. By doing so, you will create a strong foundation for sustainable growth.
  • 2. Embrace smart brevity: In a world of limited attention spans, learn to distill your message into a single, memorable point. Start with the "why" and focus on what truly matters. By delivering concise and impactful content, you will capture and retain audience attention more effectively.
  • 3. Respect people's time: Value the time of your audience and respect their attention. Cut through the noise by delivering content that is meaningful and relevant. By doing so, you will not only make a lasting impact but also build trust and loyalty among your audience.

In conclusion, in a world where attention is scarce and distractions abound, it is crucial to optimize our strategies for growth and engagement. By understanding the importance of core actions and prioritizing them, as well as embracing the art of smart brevity, we can navigate the crowded online landscape and make a meaningful impact. By respecting people's time and delivering concise, impactful content, we can capture and retain audience attention more effectively. So, let us strive to create products and content that not only attract users but also engage them in a meaningful way.

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