Since the dawn of the internet, attention spans have been on the decline, with some sources stating they’ve shrunk 50% over the last decade. Why is this happening? After discovering this statistic, I decided to explore where our global consciousness was redirecting and my findings were painfully obvious.
There are over 3.03 billion active social media accounts in 2018, that’s enough for ⅓ of the population to have liked, shared and subscribed to something online. So what kind of content are they interacting with? Well It only takes a couple of clicks through Facebook to find out. Pictures, text and video, a sea of quick fire content readily available for your average consumer to digest, and because of the sheer amount of it ⅓ of video viewers have already moved onto the next piece of media by the 30 second mark, here are the stats;
10 seconds or less: 89.61% of viewers retained.
20 seconds or less: 80.41% of viewers retained.
30 seconds or less: 66.16% of viewers retained.
60 seconds or less: 46.44% of viewers retained.
2 minutes or less: 23.71% of viewers retained.
3 minutes or less: 16.62% of viewers retained.
5 minutes or less: 9.42% of viewers retained.
Sometimes those 30 seconds are all that’s needed for engagement, as video is 1200% more likely to be shared on social media than text and images combine. Not only that but viewers retain 95% of the information they watch online compared to 10% when just reading text.
If a crystal ball told you video was going to make up 80% of internet traffic by 2021 you probably wouldn’t give it too much attention, but a case study by Cisco stated exactly that. Businesses are starting to realise social media and video aren’t going away, and as marketers are discovering they’ll grow their revenue 49% faster by utilising these forms of media, their competitors who aren’t will soon be struggling to stay in the game.
New technology will change our culture and the landscape of business in general. We’ve seen platforms like Vine (6 second videos) die a death while podcasts (1 – 4 hour conversations) rise in popularity. The Joe Rogan podcast pulls in an amazing 80 million download a month, which leads me to think that the most popular content will always be that which reflects the present moment. If the topic is interesting and relevant to the time and recorded to a professional standard, it’ll pull in an audience and influence a viewer/ listener. Although we have to wonder how much information passive viewers/ listeners are really comprehending. In the case for video, the stats are already in.