Earned Attention: More than a stack of paper

Attention is the ultimate currency and the only commodity that matters

As an industry I think we’re getting weary of all the various “rich content” experiments and products floating around these days. I have to admit that most make me want to yawn and move on to the next item in my email inbox. Too many of them feel like a Frankenstein project where elements are grafted onto a traditional book and there’s a giant bolt sticking out of the neck.

Every so often one actually grabs my attention. Ironically, the latest one is called Earned Attention. I first watched the video embedded below and was curious to learn more about it. Here’s a quote from the video foreword that really resonated with me:

Attention is the ultimate currency. It is the ultimate scarce resource. It is the only commodity that matters.

How true. And even more so in the publishing world these days. We’re all talking about discovery and rising about all the noise. If you can truly earn the attention of your target audience you’re clearly doing something right, and “earn” is the key word here.

Here’s another quote from the end of the video below:

A book that you never actually finish.

I’ll bet that’s a turn-off to a lot of people. Most of us just want to read a book from start to finish and be done with it. Every so often though you want the book to be a part of an ongoing stream of information. That’s how I view Earned Attention. It’s one of those products that should continue feeding your brain with more insight, long after you read the last word of the printed book.

I’m looking forward to digging into this one. My only disappointment is that the accompanying apps are for iOS only. As an Android convert I’ve decided this is the worst six-word sentence I’ve ever read:

Available for iOS (Android coming soon)

I see that sentence far too frequently. I guess I’ll have to dig out that first-gen iPad of mine and see if I can use the app there.

This post originally appeared on Joe Wikert’s Publishing 2020 site. It’s republished with permission.