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Ben Parr

Award-Winning Journalist; Author; Entrepreneur; Investor; Expert on the Science of Attention; Silicon Valley Insider

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Fee Range:
$15,000 - $25,000

Through his unique experience and access as a leading technology writer/prognosticator, venture capitalist, and Silicon Valley insider, Ben has coached dozens of young startups, as well as Fortune 500 corporations, on how to get attention for their products and services, and how to stay ahead of the curve. Ben was named one of the top ten tech journalists in the world by Say Media, and named to the Forbes 30 Under 30 list in 2012.

As the founder of Mashable and Octane AI , and bestselling author of Captivology, Parr is an expert in the science of capturing attention, why attention is the currency of the modern world, and that the people and brands who know how to command it are the ones who succeed.

Featured Videos

Ben Parr | Brand ManageCamp

Captivating Our Attention: Lessons from Tech's Great In ...

The Startup Conference: Captivology, How to Capture the ...

Speaker Resources


Ben Parr is an award-winning entrepreneur, author, and investor. He is President and Co-Founder of Octane AI, the Buyer Persona Marketing Cloud for ecommerce. Octane AI powers sales, marketing, automation, and support on-site and through channels like Facebook Messenger and SMS for over 1,000+ brands, including GoPro, CVS, Proactiv, Maroon 5, Warner Music Group, and CoverFX. Octane AI is backed by the world’s top investors, including General Catalyst Partners, Bullpen Capital, and executives from Pinterest, Google, Expedia, and Starbucks.

Ben is the author of the best-selling book "Captivology: The Science of Capturing People's Attention" (HarperCollins). His book dives into the science and psychology of attention, why we pay attention to certain people, products, companies and ideas, and how to capture and retain somebody's attention. He interviewed Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg, acclaimed director Steven Soderbergh, Entourage’s Adrian Grenier, Nintendo’s Shigeru Miyamoto, and magician David Copperfield for his book, along with leading researchers in psychology and neurology such as Dr. Michael Posner and Dr. Adam Gazzaley.

Previously, Parr was the Co-Editor and Editor-at-Large of Mashable, where he wrote more than 2,400 articles on social media and technology, managed Mashable’s editorial team. He has also served as a Columnist and Commentator for CNET.

Parr has been recognized for his work, including being named to the Forbes 30 Under 30. He has been featured ion CNBC, CNN, The Wall Street Journal, NPR and The New York Times. Parr is a graduate of Northwestern University.

Speech Topics

The former editor of Mashable, Octane AI founder, and bestselling author of Captivology discusses the lessons he’s learned from his time with technology’s top entrepreneurs and execs – Mark Zuckerberg, Jack Dorsey, Elon Musk, Sheryl Sandberg, Super Mario creator Shigeru Miyamoto, and more. He pairs these lessons with his Captivology research for a unique look into the minds of the masters.

In his signature keynote, Captivology author Ben Parr vividly brings the science of attention to life and demonstrates how anyone can capture attention for their passions and ideas. Parr explains why attention is the currency of the modern world, and that the people and brands who know how to command it are the ones who succeed.

Harnessing his entertaining, humorous, and participatory presentation style, Parr takes a deep dive into the seven “Captivation Triggers” that drive attention, why these behavioral and psychological phenomena capture our attention, and – most important — offers practical advice for how anybody can utilize the Captivation Triggers in daily life. Whether his audience is a room of schoolteachers or advertising executives, Parr gets the message across: everyone has the power to captivate others.

Parr is happy to customize this keynote to maximize relevancy to your audience.

Bots – specifically chatbots and voicebots – have become one of the worlds most talked about technologies. Businesses are eagerly anticipating the potential of bots and AI, but have not yet figured them out. So how can you be creative and innovative with bots?

Captivology author, former Mashable editor and Octane AI founder Ben Parr discusses the potential of bots, the importance of having a messenger strategy, and the most effective ways businesses can engage with their customers. He discusses a new concept, conversational storytelling, and how businesses can use it to connect with consumers and unlock the creative potential of AI.

In this brand-centric, customizable keynote, Captivology author, Ben Parr, reveals the secret science of how to make any brand more captivating. Drawing from his extensive research in psychology and behavioral economics, Parr explains how brands can harness the power of the seven “Captivation Triggers” to create more attention for their product launches, drive more traction for their marketing campaigns, and increase long-term positive brand recognition.

Utilizing his signature presentation style – engaging, funny, participatory, and zero bullet points – Parr reveals the secrets to creating the most captivating brand possible.

Predicting technology trends is a multi-trillion dollar business – just ask Apple and Google. It’s the key to staying ahead of the competition. In this futuristic talk, Ben discusses the technologies that will change the landscape of human nature over the next 5, 10, 20 and 50 years. As an investor, journalist, author and Silicon Valley icon, Ben has unique insight and access to the technologies that are going to revolutionize computing, transportation, medicine, education and every aspect of our lives.

In this motivational talk, Ben inspires audiences to change the world by following the path of entrepreneurship. He draws from his experiences as an award-winning journalist (Co-Editor of Mashable), investor (Managing Partner, DominateFund), author (Captivology: The Science of Capturing People’s Attention), and entrepreneur to discuss the reality of what it takes to change the world, his experiences with entrepreneurs like Mark Zuckerberg and Steve Jobs, and his keys to entrepreneurial success.

Up to a 60 minute on-stage dialogue and open Q&A between Ben, the interviewer (which we would be happy to assist you in selecting), and your attendees.  The interview format offers tremendous control over the content of the appearance and allows for a more unique and highly interactive experience for your attendees.  Ben will answer any question that comes his way, including insights from his book Captivology, his experience as an award-winning journalist, and his insightful opinions on the future of technology, business, and media. We are available to assist with the interview format and content to help you create a dynamic and thought provoking event for your audience.

Ben – former Editor of Mashable — is a prolific interviewer and moderator, and well versed in a wide variety of topics, including:  technology, marketing, behavioral economics, entrepreneurship, and many more. He has a keen ability to ask pointed questions, dig deep, keep things interesting – and flowing, and engage the audience.

  • Captivology in Advertising

  • Captivology for Students: How to Make Your Future Career More Captivating

  • Captivology for the Self

  • Captivology for Entertainers

  • The Future of Media

  • The Future of Technology: What to Expect in the Next 5, 10, 20 and 50 Years

  • The Future of Entrepreneurship


  • Source

    From Near Death With Chatbots To New Life In E-Commerce, Octane AI Raises $4.25 Million

    (Forbes) – A startup that builds conversational commerce tools for brands has raised $4.25 million to help build its presence in the growing world of e-commerce.

  • Source

    Meet the Man That’s Getting Everyone’s Attention

    He started his first gig as a lowly writer for rising tech blog Mashable back in 2008, but quickly rose the ranks to become editor-at-large in just three years’ time.

  • Source

    Ben Parr: How to Win Attention and Influence People

    Ben Parr is managing partner of San Francisco-based DominateFund, an early-stage venture capital firm. He explains that he wrote "Captivology" out of "necessity." In his world — that of technology and start-ups — attention is the difference between success and failure.

  • Source

    Former Princeton Native Captivates Audiences

    By: Goldie Currie
    In his book, Parr combines the latest research on attention with interviews with more than 50 scientists and visionaries — Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg, film director Steven Soderbergh, LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner, New York Times bestselling author Susan Cain and many more — who have successfully brought their ideas, projects, companies and products to the forefront of cultural consciousness.

  • Source

    Ben Parr Wants Your Attention: Q&A With the Author of Captivology

    By: Katherine Dill

    (Forbes) Parr has devoted much of his career to grabbing eyeballs in various capacities, formerly as the co-editor of Mashable and now as cofounder of VC firm DominateFund. His author bio describes him as an “expert on attention.” But he’s careful to point out that Captivology is not a how-to for self-promoters.

    “It’s not about capturing attention for just yourself,” said Parr, “it’s about capturing attention for the great ideas, the great art, the great projects that you have. Everybody has some passion more people should see or notice.”

  • Source

    Ben Parr Ranked #54 of Top-100 Social Media Power Influencers in 2015

    This marks the third year that StatSocial and Haydn Shaughnessy publish a list of Twitter users most influential in the realm of social media—that is, social media experts with a great following among people also interested in social media. Excluded from this list of the top-hundred influencers are journalists and actual employees of social media companies. We’ve published this annual list on Forbes.com for two years. Take a look below for this year’s list of movers and shakers.

  • Source

    General Catalyst-backed Octane AI will make you a bot

    (Tech Crunch) – Bots are hot. But how do you make a bot? Many businesses don’t have developers that are adept at creating them. Enter Octane AI, a newly formed startup launched by media personality Ben Parr

  • Source

    Tips For Nailing Your Chatbot Content Strategy As An Advantage

    (Forbes) – Chatbots have received somewhat of a mixed response since they hit the market at scale – both praised for the ease with which they can offer customer service for instance, yet critiqued for their lack of true intelligence.

  • Source

    Why I Joined the Samasource Board of Directors

    (Medium) – I joined the board of Samasource to help Leila Janah and her team accomplish this mission, but I also joined because I believe Samasource is at the forefront of the future of work.

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  • "Parr sits at the intersection of technology, culture and productivity…"

  • "A true visionary!"

  • "An incredibly engaging speaker. His energy, wit and quick thinking make his session exciting, thought-provoking and informative. - and that's the point. He believes that capturing attention is a science and that we can all learn to engage our audiences effectively."