According to TIME Magazine, goldfish have longer attention spans than humans; let that sink in. So if you are a business professional, blogger, marketer, storyteller, or any other type of communicator trying to captivate your target audience’s attention, it is important to understand how people remember and retain information. Not only that, you must know how to capture their attention in eight seconds or less. Don’t just take my word for it. Here are a variety of statistics and tips for a better understanding of why captivating your target audience through video is more substantial than just plain text.

TechSmith envisions that eighty-four percent of all marketing communication is to be visual by 2018. This means that our behaviors are evolving in terms of how we absorb information.

We are visual learners. We buy things based on reviews, tutorials, and other third party validators. Consumers are more likely to desire a product when they can see first-hand how it operates.

For a brand, leveraging video is a great way to communicate with your audience because it allows you to “show” rather than “tell.” Of note, adding videos to your content gives readers or potential clients validation or proof of your services. According to a recent article in Fast Company, videos can convince buyers of your product’s worth. In fact, Forrester Research revealed that content that includes video is fifty times more likely to appear on the first page of Google. Video not only helps with ROI and conversions, but it helps to increase your target audience’s trust in your brand.

Consumers use social media platforms for entertainment purposes that are personalized for their interest and typically ignore content that is not attention-grabbing. Take beauty tutorials for example. Women interested in beauty, often see makeup and hair tutorials throughout their feeds. Typically, third party endorsers such as celebrities or avid bloggers produce before and after videos to show potential customers how their product could transform their “look.” Men who are interested in golf or fishing may not be interested in the beauty tutorials, so it is important to speak to the correct target audience. When posting on social media, blogs, or web pages, it is important to tailor posts to your audience’s specific interests and create content that will immediately grab their attention.

The “scroll method,” introduced by Facebook and other social media channels, has changed the way we view video. Social media channels such as Facebook and Twitter, provide a variety of video throughout the feed. Users can scroll throughout the page and the video starts automatically when the user decides to stop. As soon as the viewer loses interest, they can continue down their feed. Not only that, Facebook has made video even easier by adding subtitles within the clip. When you’re in a quiet place, without headphones, you can conveniently watch the video and read along.

When developing content, I strive to touch on the “four E’s”: Exposure, engagement, elements, and emotion. To expand, when writing content or sharing videos, you are exposing yourself to your audience by featuring elements that will engage and convey emotion. Therefore, the best way to generate engagement is to provide content that captivates attention or resonates with your target audience, like infographics for example. Infographics are visually appealing and also help to communicate technical information in a simple, digestible, attractive format. As Fast Company explains, “Infographics are an effective way to visualize information and data.”

Wordstream provided a variety of statistics that show the favorability of video.

Did you know, one-third of online activity is spent watching video? Astoundingly, “Social video generates 1200% more shares than text and images combined.” It seems like a no-brainer, it’s time to start making use of visual tactics for your company!

You must inspire your audience within the first few seconds of the video, in a timeframe of eight seconds or less, to be exact! Embrace the challenge, be concise, leave an impression, and most of all have fun!

Now the real question is, how long did it take you to get through this post? Did it captivate your attention? I bet a 30-second video would have been more interesting.

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