Creating rabbit-hole content


The rabbit-hole went straight on like a tunnel for some way, and then dipped suddenly down, so suddenly that Alice had not a moment to think about stopping herself before she found herself falling down what seemed to be a very deep well.

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland

“How can you possibly fit all that we need to report into a single page?”

Well, I can’t.

You can’t either.  No one can.

Anything important enough to report or teach is going to eventually require far more than a single page.

So what do you do when your audience only has a one-page attention span?

Do you rebel and give them two hundred pages they won’t read?  Or do you relent and give them one page of incomplete information that communicates absolutely nothing?

I’ll tell you what I do.

I create rabbit-hole content.

What is rabbit-hole content?

Rabbit-hole content is stuff that looks simple from the surface.  But it’s just a front for something far deeper.  It’s the interesting infographic, the intriguing chart, the insightful cartoon, and the engaging video.

It’s content that you experience quickly but that subsequently pulls you into a whole new world.

It’s the model I use when creating illustrated workshops.  It’s how for diydatadesign I get away with creating a short series of 2 minute videos when others would approach the same topic with an hour long webinar.

It’s also the model I use for my new online course creation service you’ll find at

My online course creation process.

Rabbit-hole content tips

  • Focus on problems, not solutions.  Problems are far more engaging.
  • Time is a protected asset.  Respect your audience’s time, don’t waste it.
  • If you are teaching, end with an activity.  Give your audience the opportunity to apply the lesson on their terms in their own time.
  • If you are reporting or disseminating, give them a next step.  When they are done with your thing, tell them where to find more.
  • Your goal at the end of the day is to lead like the rabbit in Alice in Wonderland.  Show them just enough so that they choose to follow.