Announcement: Due to my health issues, I will only be writing posts for the Art of Eloquence blog once a month. If you would like more information, tips and free gifts, please subscribe to our twice monthly newsletter. *~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~* Have you noticed that some of social media posts will garner tons of "likes," retweets, shares, and comments, but others...well...they just don't? It seemed to me that the ones that are the most important are commonly in the latter group. Frustrated, I looked deeper into this issue and was surprised by what I found. I think you will be too, but it's an important communication lesson for us all in the Technological Age. By the way, I encourage you to read through to the end of this blog post. You'll see why when you get there. That old saying "I'm just too broke to pay attention" is becoming a sad reality in today's society-especially in light of the current and equally sad economy. Do you ever feel like people don't pay attention to what you post on Facebook or read your emails? Well, I ran an extended experiment on my fan page, Facebook wall, Twitter and Google + accounts and found some very interesting results. What I Noticed * Over the last several years, there has been a steady decline in newspaper and magazine subscriptions in favor of finding snippets of news on Facebook, Twitter and other internet forums. * In the last few years, there has been a marked increase in the number of times I've had to play email volleyball in order to clarify something that the other party had inexplicably missed in my original communication. * In the last year or two, more and more friends of mine were unsubscribing from newsletters, blogs and email lists that they once were quite involved in. * Recently, there is a significant decrease of discussion on blogs and about online newsletters. * Quite recently, there has been a distinct increase of memes and pictures posted on social media. The Experiment I conducted an extensive experiment on both my Facebook fan pages, my Facebook wall, Twitter/Google + account, my newsletter and my blog for the last year or so. I posted all manner of media including videos, blog posts, notes, pictures, memes and one liners. The Results Pictures (memes) get the most likes and comments. Anything with more than a few lines of text get very few. Links to articles, newsletters or blog posts don’t get read or responded to much because people have to take the time to click on it. So, the more removed something is from where people see it and the more words it has, the less response there is. Further, the less likely that response reflects that the person had actually READ the article, listened to the audio or watched the video--even if people say they are interested in the topic. Controversial topics garner the most response with unique comments about frustrating issues people are currently facing (especially if the comment has only a few lines of text) coming in second. So Why Don’t People Read Anymore? They're just too broke to pay attention! Most people are so busy trying to make a living that they no longer have time to make a life. They run from family functions to kid's activities to shopping to work and back home again, home again jiggety jig. Too busy and too involved in their own stuff to pay attention to their friends, neighbors and extended family. What to Do in Order to Get Your Ideas Across these Days If you are trying to get a message across for ministry or business or a cause you support and you want to make sure your thoughts get noticed, start first with picture (meme) that has little to no text, but in a creative way asks a provocative question or makes a unique or humorous statement. Then, as people comment on it, introduce your supporting ideas and details. Do You Read? Be honest. Have you ever been caught having to admit you hadn't read someone's email thoroughly? Have you ever posted a comment on Facebook only to find you had completely misunderstood his post because you hadn't read it carefully? Have you ever tweeted a reply based on a Twitter article title and discovered egg on your face because you hadn't actually READ the article which had nothing to do with what you thought the title suggested? My Challenge I challenge you to read what you may not think you have time for and to take the time to read it carefully. You just might learn something that will bless your life or the lives of others you know. You will save yourself time in the long run because you will truly understand what is being communicated to you and you will reduce the amount of conflicts you have with others because you'll get it right the first time. I challenge you also to pass this blog link around to educate and encourage others to take the time to read. Thank You Another advantage of taking the time to read fully and carefully is that sometimes you are rewarded for doing so. It's kind of like staying in the theater after a movie and watching the credits. My dad likes to leave the theater as soon as the movie is over. My dh and I always stay til the very end of the credits until they turn the lights back on. Why? Very often at the end of the movie is a bit of fun, a surprise or a story resolution you'd never know about unless you stayed and paid close attention. Sometimes it's the best part of the movie! If you've read all the way through this, admittedly, very long blog post, I'd like to thank you! I will put the names of all those who leave a comment with their thoughts/experiences and say they shared this link with others into a drawing for a free gift or a gift certificate. Your choice. You have until the end of the month to do so before I draw a name. Please make sure to have your email address on your comment so I can contact you if you are our winner. ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~ If you liked this post, read…Seven Reasons Why YOU Should Sign Up for the Art of Eloquence Newsletter! This month I'll be sharing newsletter articles on two other disturbing communication trends you need to know about and what YOU can do about them! NOTE: And don't forget to check out our incredible Fire Sale this month! Here's what one customer had to say: “I can’t believe the awesome deal that you are offering on this set of e-books, JoJo! I just ordered mine! These are totally amazing! Thank you for such a great deal!” -Candy F.