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Captivology: The Science of Capturing People's Attention

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3.79  ·  Rating details ·  312 ratings  ·  37 reviews
The former editor of Mashable and cofounder of DominateFund examines the psychological phenomena that captivate our attention—and how we can leverage them to draw and retain attention for our ideas, work, companies, and more.

Whether you’re an artist or a salesperson, a teacher or an engineer, a marketer or a parent—putting the spotlight on your ideas, insights, projects an
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Hardcover, 256 pages
Published March 3rd 2015 by HarperOne
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Average rating 3.79  · 
Rating details
 ·  312 ratings  ·  37 reviews


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Rachel Blom
Mar 28, 2015 rated it really liked it
We live in a world where getting noticed is getting harder and harder. Whether we’re launching a start-up, trying to promote a book, or convincing people to read our blog, our targeted audience is bombarded with messages and information.
How do you stand out from the crowds?
Captivology (clever title by the way) is all about the science of capturing people’s attention, whatever you may need it for. It discusses seven ‘attention triggers’, more or less scientifically proven methods of getting notic
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Shannon Clark
Jan 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
First - full disclosure Ben Parr is friend and we share many mutual friends and colleagues. So I’m far from unbiased (and also sorry it took me so long to give his book my full attention). That out of the way - I highly suggest that everyone but especially anyone seeking to sell (themselves, an idea, a product, or a company) read his book.

It is an excellent and thought provoking book that dives deeply into how and importantly why we give things our attention (and what helps us sustain that atte
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Cody Faldyn
Apr 22, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: innovation, marketing
In his book Parr reveals his latest research on the psychology and neuroscience on what attracts consumers and convinces them to support certain areas of a business product or service. The goal of the book is to help you create effective advertising campaigns, deliver high quality presentations, delegate the right jobs to the right people, and bring your product to the attention of millions of prospects.

For your convenience, we had Ben Parr on our podcast, The Entrepreneurs Library, to give a de
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C
May 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing
It held my attention. :D That speaks for itself.
Karen
Dec 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
Overview: Parr has collected together a tidy summary of research studies, triggers, and motivations that have an affect on people's attention. Without attention, we can't convey anything. The seven triggers are clearly explained with lots of examples and tips. I listened to the audiobook, which is narrated by an even-toned American accented young male speaker and is suitable for x2 speed and commuting.

Favourite quotes:

"First you need to elicit a reaction by being distinctive or disruptive. Once
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Christi Winkelman
Jan 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: sociology
A little dry so I increased the speed so I could listen more comfortably. Good examples that illustrates his key points. Even though I knew much of these concepts from previous books it served as a nice review. I like that he explains why certain strategies worked or failed. I am currently struggling with rewards/incentives and intrinsic motivation. This book helped me to understand why without superfluous explanations. If you are in management, a business owner, or a blogger I highly recommend ...more
Catherine Read
Mar 30, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Excellent book on navigating the attention economy. Well known behavioral research is used to support his points and very recent examples are given that are very relatable. It's a practical guide on the best investment of time, resources and creative efforts when trying to influence people and outcomes. ...more
Andrew Orange
Jul 15, 2017 rated it did not like it
Shelves: non-fiction
Too technocratic.
I don't recommend this book.
...more
Christian Cruz
Apr 20, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: owned
Ben Parr's book about getting attention is an easy to read (actually a breeze) self-help that should benefit anyone who is into business, learning and development, communication, marketing and PR, and media.

There are many concepts, theories and research findings which he made very simple so you can understand and appreciate them easily. He writes like he is just giving you pointers and advise.

I have read several books with similar topics. This one ranks as one of the most satisfying read I have
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Claudia
Aug 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
Living in an "extroverted" world is challenging, especially if you are not naturally the "look at me" kind of person; however, the science of attention may help you figure out how to stay true to yourself and still get your point across. Captivology is written in an easy to follow style, most definitely a good read for those interested on attention triggers 101. ...more
Katherine Coble
Nov 18, 2020 rated it really liked it
This book provided a really good overview of various triggers we can use to get people's attention. Some triggers work for immediate attention, some for short term and some for long term. Some of them work together to create sustained attention from your audience. Lots of great stuff in here for marketers who want to think about the why behind capturing people's attention. ...more
John Kenrick
Oct 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Fascinating treatment of an essential topic

Well written, with clear and compelling data and memorable examples for every point. If getting and keeping the public's attention matters to you or your professional life, this is a must-read.
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Boston Bostian
Aug 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
Well researched. Clear and concise.
Marleah
Nov 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
A fascinating book. A quick read.
Suzanne Sammons
Jan 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
Interesting read about how to captivate an audience.
Mark Bieraugel
Mar 06, 2018 rated it it was ok
A long article expanded into book length. Some interesting ideas on getting the attention of an audience, but too much reliance on brain science to shore up Parr's lightweight prose. ...more
Taylor Newill
What makes things interesting to people, I don't recall much ...more
Dionne Green
Jun 17, 2020 rated it it was ok
Shelves: audio
While I found the captivation triggers compelling, I felt many of the examples didn't jive with the explanations. ...more
Kate
Nov 06, 2020 added it
not sure yet
Elizabeth
Jan 27, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: personal-library
I loved it. It was a very insightful book made simple with lots of captivating examples and explanations.
10/10 would recommend 👍🏻
Sung Yee Poon
Jan 06, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This book really captured my attention and I found it very informative in understanding more about the American millennial generation. Some of his examples are extremely interesting, for instance a new start up actually organized a product event like a wedding. Though his basic principles in capturing attention may not be new, his examples engaged me to read the book word for word. That is rare, normally I only read the sections that interest me because there are so many books to read. The autho ...more
John Martindale
As some other reviewers have mentioned, there isn't much new here. But though I've come across most of what is within these pages in other books it doesn't hurt hearing it again with the specific focus upon what captures our attention.

One random and curious note, unlike every other author I've read on similar subjects, instead of constantly saying how evolution designed, developed, optimized, created, fashioned, shaped or caused this or that, he just simply says the brain developed or was hard-
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Shawnic
Aug 12, 2015 rated it really liked it
This would be the perfect book to those who have no idea on the psychological aspects of keeping someone engaged-for anything. While most of it is pretty self-explanatory, the examples Parr used were pretty interesting because he used real time examples of big companies from back then & up to now; which either failed or succeeded in branding & marketing.

I recently started watching Gary Vaynerchuk’s YouTube videos, so I got excited coming across his name several times explaining the things I did
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JP
Dec 12, 2016 rated it it was ok
We all crave for people attention
another book trying to say it another way
interesting reads but nothing stay after reading
Mitch Olson
May 05, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: behaviour
An interesting book on the 7 factors that influence attention. I think it is more accurate to say these are factors that influence the broader field of behaviour rather than purely attention. Ben Parr is a good story teller & for that I would give him a 5. But his thinking is a little sloppy in terms of his mental models so giving him a net score of 4/5.
E.J.
Aug 15, 2015 rated it liked it
I found Captivology interesting but a little dry. It had some examples and it broke things down but it was more of a treatise than a story. If you like sociology, this book will probably appeal to you.
Tova
May 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: psychology
Really great book - it captivated me until the very end. I learned a lot of interesting ideas and thought the examples were point-on. Looking forward to looking into this author further.
Lauren
May 20, 2015 rated it it was ok
Some good examples, but nothing new in here for me. A lot of research I have read elsewhere. If you're new to the topic it could be the perfect intro. ...more
Steve
May 24, 2015 rated it liked it
Decent look at how to capture attention with what you write, say, design. Some cool insights from his experience but mostly grouping multiple sources and going psychological. Easy to read.
Jason Viglione
Jul 29, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Ben nails this. Using the model of the "triggers" you really understand what captures people's attention, why it captures and what part of the human emotion it plays to. ...more
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Ben Parr is an award-winning journalist, entrepreneur, investor, and expert on attention. He is the author of Captivology: The Science of Capturing People’s Attention . He is Co-founder and Managing Partner of DominateFund, an early-stage venture capital firm. Previously, he was Co-Editor and Editor-at-Large of Mashable and served as columnist for CNET.

Parr was named one of the top ten tech jo
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“There’s clearly a tendency for people to attempt multiple, simultaneous—as much as they can—activities,” said Dr. Adam Gazzaley, director of neuroscience at the University of California, San Francisco.3 But research shows that our propensity for multitasking and distractions is a bad thing. According to UC Irvine professor of informatics Dr. Gloria Mark, once you are captured by a distraction, it can take up to twenty-three minutes to get back on track.4 And since the average person succumbs to distractions an average of every three minutes, it can be difficult to escape.5 It’s even worse if you are a multitasker. You might think a chronic multitasker would be more adept at switching between tasks, but you would be wrong. A recent study by Stanford professor Eyal Ophir found that “heavy media multitaskers”—those who consumed a large amount of media content—were not only more susceptible to irrelevant stimuli, but they were also significantly slower when it came to switching between tasks.6 Another study, from the University of Utah, found that people who identified as “strong multitaskers” were in fact the least capable multitaskers of the 310 subjects they tested. Heavy multitaskers are far less capable of inhibiting distractions than those who identify as light multitaskers.7” 0 likes
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