There’s a very cool (and free ebook making the rounds right now called, What Matters Now.
Seth Godin pulled it together as “a different way of thinking, a useful way to focus and the energy to turn the game around.” It includes short essays (and a drawing or two) from 70 or so big thinkers in a broad range of fields. Not all are stars in the digital world, though that group is well represented, not surprisingly given Seth’s focus.
There are pieces on capitalism, education, marketing, public speaking, passion, compassion, social skills, and even saying you’re sorry.
In particular, check out David Meerman Scott’s short piece about attention. He points out that you can buy it, beg for it, or bug people for it. (That is, you can advertise, build public relations campaigns, or sell directly to someone one on one.)
Or … you can earn it by providing something of value to draw people in, engage them in conversation, get to know one another. Doesn’t matter whether you’re a small professional services firm in a “high-touch” industry or a firm selling low-cost, high-volume consumer items. Videos, blogs, white papers, ebooks all work. Whatever the folks you want to reach will find gain their attention more completely than ads or PR or sales ever will.