The Science Behind Attention

Your brain is sleepwalking through life. 

No, seriously. It has to, otherwise you would go insane. Imagine driving to get groceries and your brain taking in the color of every car you pass and every building you see. It would be too much information. 

Luckily, you have a reticular activating system that filters out 99.99% of information so you can enjoy your drive. 

Think about your typical commute. Do you notice the gray Hondas and the white Toyotas that roll by? Probably not. 

But if a green Lamborghini pulls up alongside of you, do you notice it? I do. I start wondering, “What does that person do for a living? Why a green Lambo? How fast does it go? I hope I don’t hit it; I’m not sure my insurance would cover that.” 

The green Lambo punctures through the defenses of my reticular activating system. It gets my attention and gives my brain the opportunity to focus on it. 

What does this mean for your brand? 

One lesson we have learned over and over again is that unexpected and bright colors perform much better than standard colors. 

The color that people click often is NOT the color they buy…but it gets their attention!

For example, you will notice Ford pushes bright orange, red and blue Broncos in all their advertising…

But the most popular color that people actually purchase? Cactus Gray. 

The same is true for all apparel products. The imagery gets your attention, but we tend to revert to purchases that are safer and more practical to avoid regret, which is the entire premise of my book, “People Love Turkey Sandwiches.”

In your advertising, think to yourself, “What is my green Lamborghini moment?” as people mindlessly scroll through their social feeds and watch television. 

Without attention in advertising, you have nothing.

The more you can be less like a white Corolla and more like a green Lambo, the more attention you will have as an advertiser. 

P.S. Want to see an actual commercial we made using a green supercar? See it here.

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This article is a part of The Q4 Founders’ Report. The Founders’ Report is a quarterly digest of the top conversations, insights and learnings that Jacques and Adam are having with our clients and top marketers. Sign up here.