How to Thrive in the Attention Economy

Thriving in the Attention Economy: Standing Out Among The Noise

The reign of viewability has come to an end in the land of digital advertising.

The experts at eMarketer emphasize that attention is rapidly dethroning viewability when it comes to which ad metrics are favorable among advertisers. Assessing whether consumers truly noticed and absorbed a message, rather than simply glanced at it, proves invaluable to advertisers seeking to measure outcomes.

This seismic shift in power isn’t far off in the future, it’s already happening. The report from eMarketer finds that 96% of advertisers worldwide will use attention metrics in at least some of their buys this year.

Are you prepared for this change?

Join us as we take a closer look at what the attention economy is and how brands can rise above the noise to capture consumer attention.

96% of Advertisers

worldwide will use attention metrics in at least some of their buys this year

Taking a Close Look at the Attention Economy

It’s time to give the attention economy the attention it deserves. 

The experts at Nielson say it best, “Attention is one of the most valuable resources of the digital age.” Just think of how much information we are presented with a day. We’re talking news, videos, shows, and more all available instantly online. Digital advertisements are also in the mix, but are often a casualty of the attention economy. 

Having access to this wealth of information is a luxury people of the past didn’t have, but it can also be a burden. While there are endless amounts of information to see there are still only 24 hours in a day. And more importantly, our mental processing power has remained the same as it has always been. We simply can’t process all of the ads we see in a day. 

As Nielson puts it bluntly, attention, not information, is the limiting factor in today’s society.

Changing Consumer Attention

It’s not only an abundance of content that’s proving a challenge to advertisers. Consumers are also more intentional about where they spend their attention. There is simply too much content on the Internet for the human brain to process, so the majority of ads are forgotten in seconds or glazed over due to ad fatigue. It’s no wonder they’ve gotten savvy at how to tune out ads online.

In most cases, consumers are simply on a mission for information and little else. The Berkley Economic Review emphasizes how when we go on the internet, we have a goal in mind. Whether that’s finding the answer to a question, finding the news, or conducting research, once we get what we want, we leave the site. In these scenarios, advertisers are fighting an uphill battle for consumer attention online.

“A wealth of information creatives a poverty of attention”

To put it simply, human attention is a scarce and precious commodity, and capturing it is becoming increasingly more difficult. The future that Nobel Laureate Herbert A. Simon, who came up with the attention economy definition as we know it, once predicted is here.

Tips for Standing Out in the Attention Economy

Nielsen predicts that the pressure to design ads for attention will only grow. As you’ve likely already experienced, automatically playing videos, pop-ups, and unskippable ad formats are commonplace even though they’re wildly unpopular. In this race for consumer attention, sacrificing quality for views is an easy trap to fall into.

So, how can your brand make sure your ad is one of the 10,000 that is seen and engaged with? 

Don’t Share the Spotlight

Standing out in the digital age means demanding attention. In the crowded terrain, you don’t want your ad competing for view time with a dozen others. Formats like the interscroller ad take up 100% share of the screen and are virtually unmissable.

These ads improve average view time by more than 10 seconds, which is vital in this economy. Further research has shown that full-screen, interactive mobile ads have attention rates that are 3-5x higher than the mobile display norm.



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Campaigns leveraging the full-screen interscroller format achieve attention rates that are 3-5x the mobile display norm.

And it’s not just taking up the most space, it’s also about being the only brand on the screen. This is how MOBKOI helps brands break through the noise. When consumers are presented with one attention-grabbing ad on their screen, it boosts metrics across the board.

Where your ad is placed is important in more ways than one. Not only do you want your ads to be placed on premium websites, but you also want your ads to have complete, unobstructed viewability.

With programmatic advertising, more often than not your ads are competing with obnoxious sticky banners, pop-ups, and video overlays. This negatively impacts the user experience and can obstruct the ads you worked hard to create.


By implementing a publisher-direct media buying strategy, you can avoid this issue. The real challenge lies in scaling up publisher-direct buying. At MOBKOI, we've built the infrastructure to ensure all the publishers you run across, be it 5 or 50, block intrusive ads — guaranteeing your creative content dominates the screen and boosts attention.

Don’t Dismiss Dwell Time

Dwell time is essentially the total amount of time that someone spends viewing or engaging with your ad - or in other cases, your site. 

As we’ve mentioned previously, the average dwell time with a digital ad is only 1.2 seconds. MarketingWeek elaborates on this research, finding a clear, statistically significant link between dwell time and prompted recall. In fact, only a two-second dwell time translates to 28% prompted recall. This means a consumer remembers both the ad and the brand behind the ad. Increasing dwell time to 14 seconds almost doubles the prompted recall

In other words, an ad impression can deliver twice the impact if dwell time increases. And based on what we’ve seen at MOBKOI, this experience is true. 

Through recent studies we’ve conducted in collaboration with leading Attention Measurement firm, Lumen Research, we found that engaging, full-screen ad formats drive exceptionally high attention rates that are 3-5x the mobile display norm. This research has also further validated that a high view time and attention rate leads to increases across other brand lift metrics. 

For one Luxury Fashion brand, the high-impact interscroller format held attention for an average of 2.6 seconds, which generated around 2,286 seconds per 1,000 impressions. This rate was 1.5x the outstream video norm and 3x the mobile display norm. Moreover, the campaign drove a 19% spontaneous recall and a 54% prompted recall, which is significantly higher than the industry average. Overall, the campaign achieved an 8% uplift in brand choice which topped the average range for digital campaigns with similar ad formats.

MOBKOI Makes Every Ad Impression Count

When advertisers find the perfect balance between creativity and attention measurement, magic can happen. Engaging ads placed in front of the right consumer in the right context is more profitable than placing hundreds of standard display ads across multiple unreputable sites. This is the fundamental flaw that is plaguing the industry, particularly within the programmatic landscape. Though a convenient way to buy and sell inventory, programmatic can not guarantee a 100% share of the screen nor block pop-ups. 

Prioritizing the quality of your ads over the quantity (in terms of both creative and placement) is truly the way to stand out in the attention economy and make sure your message is one of the 10,000 that breaks through.

MOBKOI has mastered the formula for creating attention-grabbing ads. The combination of high-impact formats, such as the interscroller, and hyper-engaging creative strikes the perfect balance to maximize the impact of your ads. With a premium publisher-direct network, you also always know where your ads are being placed to make every impression count, all while protecting your brand and reducing waste.

Learn more about how MOBKOI can help your brand stand out and make a lasting impression on consumers in the evolving attention economy.