We live in a world where instant gratification is the norm, millenials are on the growing, and videos are constantly circulating the internet. We desire information, but we don’t want to take the time to read about it. We want to help others, but we desire a cause that we care about before we decide to invest our time. Marketers are very aware of these trends and have turned to visual storytelling to grasp the attention of their audience.
Michael Stelzner and Ekaterina Walter co-authored an article explaining what visual storytelling actually is, along with the impact it has on its viewership. Ekaterina describes visual storytelling as “the use of images, video, infographics and potentially presentations and other visuals in social media.” Essentially, information put into a form other than just words. But why does visual storytelling outperform a regular, well-written story? Stelzner gives a few reasons as to why:
- Our brains process visuals 60,000 times faster than text.
- About 93% of all communication is nonverbal.
- Typically, there is a larger emotional connection to visuals.
- Blog posts with visuals drive up to 180% more engagement than those without.
- Attention spans are declining, (currently, about 3-8 seconds) causing marketers to grab readers attention immediately.
Visual storytelling gives marketers the ability to remedy each of these problems and grab the attention of their viewers almost instantaneously. Additionally, it helps readers feel more emotions when they actually see the story unfolding in front of them, which is a key ingredient in engaging the current and growing generations.
Procter & Gamble (P&G) is a business that thrives off of visual storytelling. In 2012, the year some marketers say was the beginning of the visual storytelling boom, P&G released a commercial during the Olympic Games. The commercial gripped the hearts of millions of viewers including over one million viewers on YouTube. P&G has continued to to use visual storytelling on its website and social media pages and has great success in doing so.