If you had to make an instant decision of which of your five senses to give up, which would you choose? Emily Ross writes some great information in her post on Video Marketing Trends: “I bet you didn’t pick your sight. Our experience of the world is perceived 83% with our sense of sight. Hearing ranks next at 11%, and smell, touch, and taste rank 3%, 2%, and 1% respectively. (Unless you’re a dog reading this, in which case I apologize for not communicating in the scent of sausages.)”

Ross continues, “For marketers, this might give a hint as to why video is the best medium for engaging and converting audiences to customers. It gives us a visual scene that becomes an experience in a way that text never can.”

The Eyes Have It

Video marketing takes a great deal of time and skill. It’s gotta be done right. To create video that truly engages viewers? Now that’s an art. But there is so much more to it.

Perfect Blend of Art and Science

When we as marketers understand how humans connect with the medium of video, they will better understand who they are reaching, why and how. This means we can reach our goals. Let’s dig into the science.

The Power of Twelve

“Videos are 12 times more likely to be watched than text is to be read,” explains Ross. “That’s in part because movement is known to grab attention. Paying attention to motion is a skill that humans have always used to survive; it’s part of our DNA.” Twelve times more powerful than words. Than the words I’m writing right now… Quick! Cut the text, the rest of this post will be on video.

…Okay so text does have it’s place. I will take reading text – any day – over watching a painfully tedious or poorly done video. So there is more to all this video stuff. I’ll keep writing, for now.

Information is absorbed via visual senses by less than 1/10 of a second, for humans. Ross gives a good example: “Imagine how long it would take to describe a scene in text. In fact, take a look at this image from Uberflip, and you’ll see what I mean”:

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Ross continues: “Visuals don’t just make us glance over at them, they make us think about them: 90% of information that’s transmitted to the brain is visual. And when they form a moving scene, you can’t look away!”

Irresistibly Attractive

Visuals grab and keep attention, they are “processed 60,000 times faster than text” (Ross), and viewers like it better. There is science to why they like it better, too. “Humans are also hard-wired to avoid cognitive strain, so video is more enjoyable for viewers because it’s easier to absorb information when it’s in that format compared to any other,” notes Ross.

Speed and Volume

Are you a visual learner? 65% of people are found to be, so it is very likely that you are. Did you know one minute of video contains the equivalent of 1.8 million words? That’s how many zeros? That is a great deal of information we can take in and process, happily and easily, in just 60 seconds. That’s why video is great for communicating complex ideas. So you have the “blink of an eye” with video, or pages of text content, to explain the same information. I’m seeing a few benefits here, you?

Grab the Tissues Too

Video has the capability to trigger emotions like no other form of communication. “Have you ever noticed that when someone smiles or cries in a movie, you find yourself making a similar expression?” tells Ross, “Well, you can thank your brain’s mirror neurons for that. These mirror neurons fire similarly to how your brain would react if you were in the same situation as the person you’re watching.” It isn’t just the facial expression that one person mirrors in another. On top of the movement, the brain gets involved, sending emotional responses that are similar to how you would feel in the same situation.

Here’s an oldie-but-goodie: remember the movie “Old Yeller”? (Thank my elementary teacher for showing us that one.) You may not have had a dog growing up, but if you have watched that movie you sure know what it feels like to have “your” favorite-dog-ever (spoiler-alert) die. Don’t tell me you didn’t want to cry, because (almost) every kid is going to cry in a movie like that. Ah, the power of video.

As marketers, we have great capabilities with this tool. “Companies can utilize the power of viewers’ brains to create an emotional connection to the brand. Research shows that images that elicit emotional responses cause our brains to release a chemical called oxytocin. This chemical helps us form empathy, leading to emotional connections, and even helps to build trust in a product or brand.” Ross

That emotional connection helps convert viewers into customers: campaigns with purely emotional content have been shown to perform about twice as well as campaigns with only rational content.

Etched In Memory

Quick review: Video gets people’s attention, explains complex concepts clearly and quickly, and pulls stronger emotions than any other medium. Well and good, but those things mean very little if they don’t remember you.

“In one study, 80% of viewers recalled a video ad they have seen in the past 30 days. That’s pretty impressive; if a brand can stick out in their target audience’s mind, they’ll be that much closer to converting that audience,” adds Ross.

 

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Ever thought about the “Play button”? That simple triangle that points to the right? That little button is considered to be the most powerful “call to action” because of the science that symbol communicates to our eyes, brains, and the emotional response it pulls. Ross concludes, “If you’re trying to plan how best to allocate your marketing efforts and budget, you can’t argue with science: video is an extremely powerful marketing medium.”

 

Image and Video Content: http://www.vidyard.com/blog/science-behind-why-video-works/,  http://sweetrosestudios.com/2015/07/small-business-video-marketing/, http://grumomedia.com/infographic-why-video-works/, and

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