Video usage on the internet grows every day, videos are now substituting product manuals, Q&A, reviews and By 2019, 80% of all Internet traffic will be video, and as consumption continues to rise, so too the need for increased accessibility. Closed captioning has been around on broadcast television since the early 1970s, but we have only recently seen it used more heavily across websites and on social channels like Facebook, where video content reigns supreme.
Regardless of where your video lives, captions are a great way to ensure that your viewers are consuming your content in the way that works best for them. After all, you want them to stick around and watch, right? Make it easy.
The benefits of Video Captions
There are many benefits attached to having captions on your videos, the first one, people can watch your videos and get your message without activating the volume, and for many, this is an awesome feature, especially for the one that is in boring meeting or they are thinking ahead but they are in a busy place where the audio makes it difficult to listen.
By adding captions, you’re making your content more accessible to the Deaf or hard of hearing, non-native speakers, and senior citizens with limited hearing. If you’re interested in learning more about how impactful captions are for the Deaf,
Captioning your videos for social media is a great way to boost viewership. I don’t know about you, but I actually get frustrated when I want to watch a video and there are no captions or overlaid text. This visual element is quickly becoming the norm on social. Don’t deter viewers from watching your video because the message is reliant upon audio.
With captions, viewers are able to watch your videos in places where they may have been less inclined to watch them before. Let your viewers enjoy your videos at restaurants, in shopping malls, or in just about any other noisy environment you can think of!
Captions for websites and landing pages
When it comes to captioning videos that live on your site or on a landing page, it’s best to play it safe with subtle captions. For example, if you have a talking head video promoting a webinar, there’s no need for flashy captions. With these types of videos, it’s more likely that someone is watching from their desktop at work rather than on their mobile phones. Plus, if they’ve already made it to your landing page, chances are you have their attention.
Captions for social media
When viewers cruise through their newsfeeds and pause on a video that’s caught their attention, they might watch it, but chances are they won’t play the audio out loud.
According to Digiday, as much as 85% of video views on Facebook happen with the sound off. Just think about it – your viewers might be in a meeting, on a train, or heck, even sitting on a toilet when they watch your video. Wherever your audience may be, you want to make sure you don’t hinder their ability to get the most out of your videos. Employing a visual-heavy approach to videos posted on these channels does just that!
Social video captions that inspire
NowThis is changing the way that people consume news and information online. They have a number of sub-branches (NowThis News, Election, Future, etc.), but for the sake of this example, let’s look at NowThis Entertainment. If you check out their Facebook page, you’ll see that their entire feed is full of videos that are meant to be played without sound. NowThis relies heavily on visuals and text to convey their message:
Mashable relies solely on custom captions to articulate the story in their videos. If you turn the audio on, you’ll notice that there’s just a simple backing track, not a voiceover of the text on the screen. Check out this video that showcases a fully-robotic kitchen, and prepare to have your mind blown:
TechCrunch gets a bonus point for being on-brand with their captions. They make their content stand out in the feed with prominent captions that catch your eye. This green, transparent bar is consistent with their brand color palette and helps make their captions easier to read. It’s a double-hitter!