From its inception, humans have always had a fascination with film. Seeing the movement of life replicated before our eyes stirs something within us that can’t be matched by photographs or text. Film and video is more popular now than it has ever been, with last year’s Star Wars movie racking up over $2 billion worldwide and 100 million people watching at least one online video daily.

As a college graduate with a film degree, this is great news for me. This is also great news for business and marketers, since video technology is becoming cheaper and more accessible. It is easier than ever for a company to produce video content, opening up a world of marketing that was so restrictive just 15 or 20 years ago. In the 1990s, you might need to rent out studio space, hire an expensive film crew, and pay for ad time on the local TV stations to get your message out. In 2016, iPhones shoot in 4K and YouTube reaches more 18-49 year olds than any cable network in the United States.

Humans are emotional creatures, and video is a powerful way to capture a viewer emotionally.

Already, 64% of marketers say that video content will dominate their strategies moving forward. In today’s electronic landscape, that number should be 100%. Humans are emotional creatures, and video is a powerful way to capture a viewer emotionally. In fact, there actually is scientific proof of this phenomenon. In the emotional parts of our brain, neurons fire off not just when we perform a particular action, but when we watch someone else perform that action as well. Because of this, our brains “mirror” what’s happening in front us as if we were part of the action, making us more emotionally involved in what we’re seeing. When you read a wall of text your cognitive processes are working hard, but this actually makes reading less appealing to our brains. Humans brains are hardwired to avoid strain, and video is much easier for our brains to digest than text. In essence, humans are born to prefer video.

Me getting ready to shoot a video with CP Graphics.

Me getting ready to shoot a video with CP Graphics.

That doesn’t mean that just any video will be enough to capture a viewer’s attention. It is so critical that the you construct the form and content of your video around who you want to your audience to be and what you want them to take away. You only have 10 seconds to grab someone’s attention before they click away, and by the 2-minute mark almost 60% of viewers have stopped watching. If your video is too broad or too specific for the audience you’re aiming for, countless potential customers will click away before they get to the meat of your video. The rise of video accessibility is in some ways a double-edged sword: it is easier for you to make videos, but it also easier for everyone else to do the same. Because of this flood of videos bombarding users at every moment, it is crucial that you tailor your videos to capture the audience you’re looking for.

Admittedly, it is ironic that a 500-word blog post is telling you that videos are much better at reaching people than a wall of text. Change is a process, and it is unlikely that written content will ever go away entirely. However, the power of video cannot be overstated. Video allows your audience to not just learn about a company or a service, but to develop an emotional connection that is hard for text to mimic.

Video is the future of content marketing, and it’s time for everyone to catch up.