Captioning for Social Media
Social Media Video Statistics
If a picture is worth 1000 words, then a video is worth a million in our ever-changing digital age. To many, it’s no surprise that more videos are being watched now than ever. Video consumption has nearly doubled since 2018, and by the end of 2022, it is estimated that;video will account for more than 80% of internet traffic. In the business world, video has become the optimal way for marketers to expand their reach and create lasting consumer engagement. It has proven to generate more leads, product understanding, and income.
But video is not just about connecting products and consumers. It’s a way to connect people by sharing information, experiences, and ideas.
Captions for Social Media
With billions of people using social media daily, creators must constantly evolve to keep up with trends and increase engagement. There are many reasons that social media users may use captioning when engaging in content. Millions of people are deaf or hard of hearing and require captions for social media when they watch videos. When videos don’t include captions, creators miss out on millions of views, not to mention isolating an entire community of people from engaging not only with the video but with other viewers.
What about the viewers who aren’t Deaf or hard of hearing? Would they use captions?
A study by Verizon Media and Publics Media in 2019 found that approximately 65% of people don’t use sound when watching videos in public, and 25% don’t use sound even when in private.
Many people don’t want the sound turned on when browsing social media apps, either because
they are in a loud or quiet environment with other people or simply don’t want to hear it. And
without social media captions to grab viewers’ attention, they tend to scroll past quickly.
Impact of Captions
Accessibility is one of the main reasons to include social media captions in your video content,
but what other reasons make captioning a “must” for your videos? Social media captions can
increase viewer retention, brand recognition, viewership from other countries, searchability, and
Social media apps and websites use algorithms to curate content for their users. Different factors
increase or decrease the video’s ranking, including video length, tags, and captions. These
algorithms favor videos and other content that have high engagement. Nearly 91% of videos with captions keep their viewers through the end, compared to only 66% of videos without captions.
Videos with captions have more shares, reactions, and clicks.
When you take the plunge on adding social media captions to your videos, there are a few things
to remember to make the most out of your efforts. When captioning your video, there are four
things to consider: readability, contrast, placement, and synchronization.
Readability: Ensure viewers have time to read the captions on the screen. The maximum
number of characters per line shouldn’t exceed 36, or about 70 characters per segment, with a
nearly equal amount of text on each line.
Contrast: Your captions should stand out against the video. If your video is darker, make your
captions lighter, and vice versa. The best practice is to have white captions against a black
Placement: On televisions, captions are supposed to be in the bottom or top portion of the
screen, ensuring vital information doesn’t get covered up. In social videos, keep captions at the
bottom or top of the screen to prevent covering up the essential visual elements.
Synchronization: If the captions don’t match what is on the screen, it can be incredibly
confusing for viewers. It can be especially true for the members of the deaf community that are
lip readers. Captions should fully synchronize with the audio or, at most, in a live captioning
scenario, delayed by 3-5 seconds.
Keeping these best practices in mind will help ensure you get the most out of your captioning
How Link can help
Link Electronics provides accessibility technology for the broadcast industry and is a leader in
the captioning industry. Our highly trained team is well versed in helping our customers with
customized solutions for their captioning and accessibility needs.
If you are thinking about adding captions to your video content, our products, including the ACE series of automated captioning engines, are ready to help you meet your goals. If you have
questions about where to start or which captioning solution is right for you, call us, and we will
help guide you to the accessibility solution that makes the most sense.
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