Captivology: The Science of Capturing People's Attention

By Ben Parr

Why are we captivated by sites like Facebook and Instagram, but couldn't care less about MySpace? Why do some musicians grow as popular as Beyoncé, while others never make the charts? Why do some nonprofits, such as Charity: Water, succeed in getting our donations, while other charities are ineffective? And why can't anyone seem to ever get the attention of their kids?

In Captivology, Ben Parr, former editor of Mashable and cofounder of DominateFund, reveals how and why our mind pays attention to some events, ideas, or people and not others. Vividly bringing to life the stories of en-trepreneurs, musicians, filmmakers, thought leaders, political strategists, magicians, and other masters of attention, Parr presents a new understanding of how attention works and identifies seven captivation triggers—techniques guaranteed to help you capture and retain the attention of friends, colleagues, customers, fans, and even strangers. These triggers spark our brain's attention response systems by appealing to fundamental aspects of human nature.

Combining the latest scientific research with interviews of visionaries who have successfully brought attention to their ideas, projects, and companies (Facebook's Sheryl Sandberg, film director Steven Soderbergh, LinkedIn's CEO Jeff Weiner, New York Times bestselling author Susan Cain, and more), Parr makes the case that you can rise above the noisy crowd and be heard—without having to shout.

Insightful and practical, Captivology will change how you tell your kid to clean her room, deliver your next presentation, con-vince the world to support your cause, or attract users to your product.


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 and products requires a deep understanding of the science of attention. In Captivology, award-winning journalist and entrepreneur Ben Parr explains how and why the mind pays attention to some events or people—and not others—and presents seven captivation triggers—techniques guaranteed to help you capture and retain the attention of friends, colleagues, customers, fans, and even strangers.

Parr combines the latest research on attention with interviews with more than fifty scientists and visionaries—Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg, film director Steven Soderbergh, LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner, magician Jon Armstrong, New York Times bestselling author Susan Cain, Nintendo’s Shigeru Miyamoto, founder of Reddit Alexis Ohanian, and more—who have successfully brought their ideas, projects, companies, and products to the forefront of cultural consciousness. The result is an insightful and practical book that will change how you assign jobs to your kids or staff, craft a multi-million dollar ad campaign, deliver your next presentation, attract users to your product, or convince the world to support your cause.



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EXCERPTS: Captivology: The Science of Capturing People's Attention

Posted February 25, 2015, 10:00 AM with category of Marketing & Sales
Captivology, from the cofounder of venture capital firm DominateFund and former editor of Mashable, teaches us how to get and maintain attention. Read more




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ISBN: 9780062324191

About the Hardcover

Publisher HarperOne
Publish date 03/03/2015
Pages 256
ISBN-13 9780062324191
ISBN-10 0062324195
Language English

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