In the attention economy, writing still packs a punch

For some audiences—particularly top business execs—written content is indispensable in researching important decisions. Here’s how PR pros are thinking about their skill sets.

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The greatest challenge facing brand storytellers and content creators is the competition for audiences’ attention.

For every message you send to a customer, an employee, an investor or some other target demographic, you have to think about how you can stand out. You’re not solely competing against other brand messages, either. You are competing against the entire internet, TV and audio programming, and other distractions.

“It’s very competitive now where people get their information,” says Amy Carr, U.S. general manager for TimeZoneOne. Carr knows a thing or two about fighting for audience eyeballs having worked for TimeOut Chicago, the Chicago Tribune, and most recently as editor-in-chief of Chicago magazine before joining TimeZoneOne.

“We’re constantly bombarded with information on our social media accounts and TV and radio and billboards and everything,” she says. “So, how do we help reach the audience that wants the information and give them something that’s truthful, interesting and compelling?”

The tempting answer is to embrace new formats: Short video on platforms like TikTok and YouTube continue to entice content managers and creators looking for new audiences. But, some are focusing on the power of the humble written word.

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