Our daily internet consumption is dominated by watching videos. Online videos are currently accounted for 68 percent of internet traffic, and according to Cisco, this number is expected to reach 82 percent by 2020. The evolution of video consumption has extended to reach everything from entertainment to education, with the last being our focus throughout this article.

The eLearning process is no stranger to digital media. Around 74 percent of companies currently use Learning management systems (LMS), virtual classrooms, webcasting and video broadcasting, while 18 percent of companies use mobile applications and 11 percent others currently use podcasting. Most prominently, 98 percent of organizations said they will implement video in their digital learning strategies by 2016. (eLearningIndustry, 2015)

The industry is challenged by numerous factors; learners’ short attention span, information retention, and course dropouts. Thanks to their accessibility and practicality, videos offer busy learners an opportunity to broaden their skill sets. Here are six reasons why we believe videos can help in enriching the digital audience’s’ learning experience.

1. Keeping learners engaged.

Unlike simple Powerpoint presentations and lengthy unicoloured documents, videos are capable of engaging the audience with a wide array of visuals and audios. In addition to that, enticing learners through quizzes and gamification have never been easier. Videos allow eLearning to become a two-way communication method that is more interactive and responsive to learners’ needs.

2. Taking knowledge retention to the next level.

Knowledge retention is one of the main barriers facing instructor-led courses and programs.According to a study by Glaser, R., adults statistically retain 10 percent of what they read, 20 percent of what they hear, 30 percent of what they see, and 50 percent of what they hear and see.

Videos also help keep the learners’ attention much longer than regular page turners. Another interesting study by The Research Institute of America suggested that eLearning increases retention rates by up to 60 percent.

3. Reducing dropout rates.

If you read into eLearners and dropouts, you’ll find that people mostly become dull with the presentation of the learning materials, and therefore, have a hard time committing to the courses. Videos stimulate learners through high-end visuals and audio effects and help in illustrating the most complicated concepts and theories. Consequently, when the learning process is that entertaining, who would want to drop out?

4. Simplifying complex ideas.

Concepts are best illustrated with visuals. Using videos to demonstrate ideas is quick, efficient, and more likely to stick to the learner’s mind. According to a study conducted by a Forrester researcher, Dr. James McQuivey, he estimates that what can be written in 1.8 million words, can be illustrated visually in just one minute! Another successful example that illustrates why videos are taking over.

A recent study shows that mobile “how-to” searches on YouTube are growing 70 percent year-over-year and more than 100 million hours of how-to content have been watched in North America this year so far.

You can find further information and statistics in our analysis, here.

5. Opening doors to discussions.

According to Glaser, R., people recall 70 percent of what they say or discuss with others. This has made conducting discussions an impressive technique that allows learners to attain information they’ve been taught verbally. Especially with the rise of live videos on social media platforms such as YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, eLearners now can communicate directly with their tutors.

6. Creating animation elevates your content.

Where words fail, animation succeeds. Award-winning eLearning designer, Tim Slade, said in an interview that animation can bring your content to life when used properly. If you combine powerful visuals, audio narration, and a great script, you can create a long-lasting, multi-sensory learning experience. Slade advised against using animations for the sake of using animations. ‘’If you’re using animations to “spice” or “jazz” things up, don’t do it!’’

We cannot help it but agree with Slade. Animation can create the perfect atmosphere for your content; whether you were targeting middle school students or employers from a multinational corporate. Aside from guiding and communicating with the audience. Animated videos can also be inspiring. It can take the audience on an emotional journey that engages all their senses.

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