Video is where it’s at when it comes to content. Video has been a defining feature of the digital world, and it’s what people consume the most when using social and online media. Forbes says “Video is projected to claim more than 80% of all web traffic by 2019″. Video advertising is huge. People like passively watching instead of actively reading (I am an anomaly in that I can’t stand being forced to watch a video and would rather go at my own speed skimming an article, but that’s another matter). I don’t have to go on and on about how great video is for marketing, do I?

What’s even better for video as content is when the video has CAPTIONS!!!!

CAPTIONS CAPTIONS CAPTIONS I cannot repeat myself enough PLEASE PLEASE content creators/Facebook/Youtube PLEASE make captions available for ALL OF YOUR VIDEOS!

Not only are captions a tool for inclusivity for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing communities, they are SO GREAT for making video more accessible to EVERYONE!

Captions help:

  1. With catching people’s attention when they don’t pay attention to the image but something verbal is interesting.
  2. With watching video in public without earbuds.
  3. Clarify meaning when the spoken words are garbled or hard to hear.
  4. Deaf and Hard of Hearing people, the elderly, or those with learning disabilities engage with your content.
  5. With making content meme-able! If people can grab screenshots of your content with a funny caption already provided by a build in caption of the audio, you’ve got a leg up on the competition.

I will almost always scroll past a video that I’m not 100% dedicated to watching if it doesn’t have captions because I just cannot be bothered to put effort into watching it if I’m in a public place and the audio would bother others. I’m aware many people find captions distracting. I grew up with them due to my multiple Deaf and Hard of Hearing family members, so I love them and rely on them to fully enjoy the video I’m watching! The simple answer to this is to give an option in the video platform to turn off captions.

Plus, captions can be a fun thing to play with in video marketing. My goal is to create a video for one of my clients that has no audio and only captions. Something different would make the hearing world listen, no?

Shoutout to Penn State’s Accessibility page for that lovely featured image 😉