One of the secrets to great investing is that dividend stocks are some of the best performing stocks to own over the long run. It's for this reason investors would be wise to take a good look at AFLAC (NYSE:AFL), the nearly 60-year company that, by its own description, is now the largest provider of individual insurance in Japan and the leading provider of supplemental insurance in the United States. 

As Motley Fool contributor John Maxfield discusses in the video below, there are at least three reasons AFLAC makes the cut. First, it yields 2.3% compared to the S&P 500, which yields 2%. Second, the company currently distributes only 21% of its earnings, leaving more than enough room to increase the dividend if its board of directors chooses to do so. And finally, AFLAC has both paid and increased its dividends consistently since at least the early 1980s.

Top dividend stocks for the next decade
The smartest investors know that dividend stocks simply crush their non-dividend paying counterparts over the long term. That's beyond dispute. They also know that a well-constructed dividend portfolio creates wealth steadily, while still allowing you to sleep like a baby. Knowing how valuable such a portfolio might be, our top analysts put together a report on a group of high-yielding stocks that should be in any income investor's portfolio. To see our free report on these stocks, just click here now.

John Maxfield has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Aflac. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.