How To Survive In A Multi-Screen, Mega-Media World

Break Through The Babel

Today’s mind-boggling media landscape is the equivalent of the ancient Tower of Babel. According to the religious myth, humanity vowed to build a tower tall enough to reach heaven. Apparently, God was not onboard with this plan, so he “confounded their speech,” so they could no longer understand each other. Chaos ensued and the people were scattered around the world. Today, “babel” is defined as a “scene of noise of confusion.”

If you prefer a musical analogy, the late great Harry Nilsson sang about it with “Everybody’s talking at me. I can’t hear a word they’re saying.”  

I hear you Harry. We’re living in a noisy, overwhelming, multi-screen world.  

We can talk into our remotes and summon any kind of content.  

We can ask Alexa or Google to give us the headlines, answer any question, or play any song. 

We can binge on Netflix or YouTube or Amazon Prime. 

We’re pummeled with social media and screens that shout at us while we’re buying groceries or pumping gas.  

And let’s not forget video games, virtual reality and augmented reality…  

So many screens, so little attention span.  

So how do you break through the noise and stay relevant in a multi-screen, mega-media world? In a cacophony of noise where everyone and everything is vying for our limited and cherished attention?

Here are five ideas for being heard and making an impact: 

1 – Shut the f*ck up and listen.

Instead of adding to the caterwauling, be quiet and listen. If you want to get attention, you’ve got to give attention. What does your viewer really want in this moment, and how can you give it to them in a way that’s seamless and helpful? Stop interrupting, start helping.  

2 – Create content that’s too good to ignore.

Not the loudest, not the flashiest, just the best. Content will never be dethroned as king. Give the people what they want, when and where they want it!  

3 – Be everywhere they are. 

Meet your viewer wherever they are. That means you need to be everywhere, all the time. Be there no matter where your viewer is and what they’re doing. Be on all the screens, all the time: TV, YouTube, mobile, tablet, at home, on the go, socials, apps, Alexa, whatever!  

4 – Engage and entertain. 

Have something worth saying, watching, and hearing. Something people will talk about and share. I may not stay up to watch “Late Night with Seth Myers.” But I will go to YouTube or Facebook the next day to find his “Closer Look” video the next day. Why? Because it’s entertaining and and don’t have to scour the Internet for it. It’s easy to find.  

5 – Make it simple and seamless to find you. 

In an environment where everything is a voice command away ("Hey Siri!”), you’ve got to be more than just “on their radar.” You’ve got to be top of mind, first in line, first result in search, and ridiculously easy to find. And when they find you, you’d better have what they’re looking for! Keep it simple. Make it seamless and effortless for your viewer.  

And remember, your viewer is in a hurry, is multi-tasking, and is most likely skeptical of any message you may be trying to deliver. Reassure your viewer that they’re in the right place and that you’ll take good care of them. Respect their time and attention, since both are in short supply. And do it it in as few words, as few images, as few clicks or as few voice prompts as possible!  

Originally published at

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