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What percentage of communication is nonverbal?

Nonverbal communication makes up the majority of our message – through elements such as body language, tone, and eye contact.

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What percentage of communication is nonverbal?

Nonverbal communication is an essential part of any conversation. In this article, we’ll be discussing nonverbal communication as a whole and the importance it has on communicating a message properly. More specifically, we’ll be covering some of these topics below:

  • What are nonverbal messages?
  • Verbal vs nonverbal communication
  • How much of communication is nonverbal?
  • The importance of nonverbal communication
  • Nonverbal communication types


What is nonverbal communication?

Generally, nonverbal communication encompasses any transmission of ‘messages’ through pathways apart from speech. These may include eye contact, body language, gestures, facial expressions, and more! Many people rely on these nonverbal cues as part of any conversation to better understand what someone is saying or how they’re trying to communicate.


Verbal vs Nonverbal Communication

Verbal communication and nonverbal communication work in tandem to accurately relay a message anytime you’re having a conversation. Though the two are so different, it’s important that you try to take advantage of both styles as, without one of them, certain messages and emotions can get lost in translation.

Verbal communication can include both oral and written communication. Some examples of verbal communication include phone calls, face-to-face conversations, texting, emailing, letters, and speeches. Examples of nonverbal communication include body language indicators like head nodding, covering your mouth, tapping your fingers, rolling your eyes, crossing your arms, etc.


How much of communication is nonverbal?

If you’re curious how much of communication is nonverbal, the answer may surprise you. The majority of our communication is actually made up of nonverbal cues. Let’s examine what percentage of communication is nonverbal. Experts say that 70% of communication comes from body language, highlighting the importance of nonverbal communication.

Albert Mehrabian’s 7-38-55 rule can help quantify the percent of nonverbal communication. The 7-38-55 rule states that 7% of meaning in a conversation is communicated through actual spoken word, 38% through tone of voice, and 55% of conversations is communicated through body language. This rule highlights the importance and effect that body language and tone of voice can have when conversing with someone else.

So to answer the question of how much of communication is nonverbal? Nearly 93% of communication is nonverbal, and only 7% is the spoken word.


Types of Nonverbal Communication

There are many different forms of nonverbal communication and they all communicate different things! As stated above, in a conversation, body language communication percentage is about 55%; therefore, you should pay close attention to how you’re physically communicating your message. Body language can help you express emotions as well as other facets that can help dictate how your message is translated. We’ll briefly list examples of body language below, but you can also learn more about the 8 types of nonverbal communication here. Nonverbal communication includes:

Facial expressions

Facial expressions do a great job of indicating how you feel about a certain topic or a situation. For example, a frown indicates an unpleasant emotion and a smile indicates a positive attitude/

Kinesics (gestures)

Gestures like waving, pointing can also help you exaggerate a point.


Proxemics is the measure of physical space and distance between people when they communicate.

Eye contact

 Eye contact can help you show the person that you’re communicating that you’re either interested or disinterested in what they’re saying.


Why is nonverbal communication important?

The importance of nonverbal communication in our day-to-day conversations revolves a lot around how our messages are translated and perceived. Certain elements like tone can completely change the meaning of your message along with your body language. Having developed nonverbal communication skills can change the way you converse with others in a positive way! Body language is best at communicating certain emotions and feelings that words sometimes can’t.

Nonverbal communication in the workplace can carry even more value than in our day-to-day conversations. In the workplace, different communication elements come together when conversing with clients, coworkers, prospects, etc. Email is a primary form of communication; however, it’s easy for messages to often get misinterpreted and it can be hard to convey your passion, personality, and personalized elements in your message. Using video is a great solution to convey those parts of your message. A video message is a personalized recorded video that can be attached to an email or a text message and allows you to communicate a message in a more meaningful way than you could with a plain text email or message. Video messages can be used in the sales industry, marketing, customer service, and more!


How to Improve Nonverbal Communication

Covideo is a simple and easy solution to communicate your message more effectively – especially in the workplace. Covideo helps you record, send, and track video messages in just a couple of easy steps! Video is your next best option when communicating in person isn’t a possibility. Video allows you to put a face to a name, express yourself, and communicate your message fully – both verbally and nonverbally. Not only that, but sending a video message can also help you stand out in a cluttered inbox, increase engagement and open rates, and leaves a lasting impression on your audience. Your nonverbal communication cues communicated through a video can help secure deals and more!

With Covideo, you can use our video recording software free of charge with all of our standard features to see what it’s all about. Start a free trial to kickstart sending video messages today; no credit card required! Learn more about our demo now!



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