Reports Critical Developments

Attention inflation How multitasking is reshaping the attention economy

Report by Karol Severin and Perry Gresham
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20,000 foot view:  Entertainment hours are up, but consumption is becoming diluted and losing focus, and is increasingly in the background of other activities. Audiences want to consume more but have no more time to allocate; increased multitasking is the result. Consequently, attention / focus is split between more propositions. In other words, entertainment time spent is growing but is getting less valuable. This is the era of attention inflation.

Key insights

  • In            2022,            spent            average weekly hours on            up from            in            2021
  • The composition            consumption hours is changing –            consumption declined from            to            hours,            background consumption grew from            to           
  • Socialising while            in digital is becoming increasingly            having grown from            to            hours                       2021 and            2022
  • Multitasking and            socialising are increasingly disrupting focused            which means that the value            time spent is decreasing. Focused            is decreasing for all age           
  • Consumption hours            generally increased since            2020 for            aged            but are relatively unchanged            those under            Older segments also            higher shares of focused consumption
  • The attention            dynamics favour multitasking-friendly propositions that            demand heavy focus from the           
  • Social media            music streaming are the big            of the attention inflation dynamics,            increased weekly time spent by                       year-on-year respectively
  • Video consumption            the highest share of weekly                       of all entertainment formats, though            weekly hours have declined by           
  • Music is            to thrive in the era            attention inflation
  • Games have            opportunity to accommodate some of            time spent on music and            by providing interactive venues

Companies and brands mentioned in this report:  Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google, Heardle, Instagram, Microsoft, Netflix, Shorts, Snapchat, Spotify, TikTok, Twitter, Vevo, YouTube