Video production has taken the center stage in the world of digital marketing. So naturally, many companies are focusing on how to use this medium to its fullest potential. Instead of just writing blogs and sharing pictures, marketers must also learn how to harness the power of video. But video isn’t just about stunning audio and visuals. Adding text in the form of closed captioning is also essential. So, why add captions to video? To put it plainly, you need to be mindful of audience accessibility. Optimized accessibility ensures that your content is inclusive to all viewers. Which is what we all want, right? Let’s talk about why adding captions to your videos is so important!
7 Reasons You Should Add Captions to Video
There are many more reasons why you should add captions to video as a marketer, but here are our top 7 picks!
1. Audience Expansion
When you add captions to video, you make your content available to more people. This includes those who are English language learners or people who have difficulty hearing. Embedding captions in your videos will help capture the interest of these individuals who may overlook your content otherwise.
2. Keep the Audience Focused
Many of you can attest to the fact that it’s difficult to capture the attention of users who are rapidly scrolling through their feeds. But, when you add captions to video, these users are more likely to engage with your post. Most videos are automatically muted on social feeds, which makes them easy to overlook. And I speak from personal experience when I say that I have scrolled past many muted videos that didn’t pique my interest. So, the simple act of adding captions is an easy way to keep your audience engaged.
3. Increase Watch Time
Once you’ve got someone’s attention, you probably want to keep it! Captions are a great way to do this because they encourage the user to continue following along with the video. In fact, Facebook reported that adding captions increased viewer time by an average of 12%. Many other social media platforms are similar in that they also automatically mute videos in their feeds, so this benefit is not unique to Facebook.
4. Improve Understanding
Not many people will watch something in its entirety if they do not understand its message. As we mentioned before, closed captioning is a great way to make sure that users suffering from hearing loss can understand your video. The same goes for non-native speakers, as seeing the words in writing makes it easier for them to comprehend and even translate. But, captioning your videos can also help other people understand your videos, especially if the subject is speaking quickly or with a thick accent. This is also true for viewers who cannot view your content with the sound on due to environmental factors. This includes anything from a nosy street to a library. Therefore, everyone can benefit when you add captions to video!
5. Search Engine Optimization
The actual practice of search engine optimization is not easy to comprehend, but anyone can understand the importance of ranking in search results. Higher rankings direct more traffic to your website, which will hopefully generate more business for you. As artificially intelligent as they are, search engines cannot crawl video footage. But, they can crawl text. Creating and uploading closed captions as well as transcripts for your videos will put you on the radar of these search engines, which will hopefully help to increase your rankings for certain keywords. As tedious as these acts may seem, they do matter when it comes to setting your brand apart from the rest within a digital landscape.
6. Include Additional Information
Captions can also be used to include citations or links. This is an easy hack if you’d like to avoid cluttering up your video with too much information. Doing so should also help to improve the credibility of your website and the information that you’re sharing through your videos.
7. Boost Views
If you release a well-produced video with accessibility in mind, you are sure to see an increase in viewership. Not only will more individuals engage with your videos, but they are more likely to share them as well!
How to Add Captions to Video
The alternative is to create your own closed captions. An easy way to do this is to use YouTube. Whether or not your video is public, you will be able to generate these files easily with YouTube Studio. Once you have written them manually, you can upload them along with your YouTube video or download them in an SRT file format. These files can then be uploaded with your videos on any compatible platform, like Facebook or LinkedIn.
Do you have any insights or questions regarding why more people should add captions to video? Drop them in the comments below!