What Marketers Need to Know about The Psychology of Distraction

Posted by Owen Matson, Ph.D. on January 12
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MarketScalePsychologyofDistraction.jpgWe tend to talk about distractions as things we can’t control: The buzz of the phone that interrupts that big meeting, the unsolicited emails in our inboxthe endless stream of our information that clouds our focus. 

Yet, could we also seek distraction? 

In his book The World Beyond Your Head: Becoming an Individual in an Age of Distraction” author Matthew Crawford argues that we are drawn to distractions because they provide a sense of choice.  For instance, while sitting in an obligatory office meeting, taking the time to look at our phone provides the sense that we have some control amidst otherwise obligatory tasks.  The appeal of the distraction—in this case, the phone—lies in the fact that we have chosen to use the phone. The experience of choice in turn appeals to deeply held cultural beliefs that value individual choice and freedom. 

The Lesson for Marketing: Kill negative distractions by developing content that empowers audiences with choices. 

To learn more about effective marketing in Age of Distraction, read the full article here: MarketScale.com

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