If you watch a lot of foreign-language movies, you probably wouldn’t even notice if a video has captions attached. For everyone else, however, subtitles can be kind of an annoyance when watching a video. They can reduce immersion and take attention away from the action on screen.
However, if you’re making an explainer video for your business, subtitles are absolutely, 100% necessary. Here at the studio, we add subtitles to every animation we produce for free. Let’s take a look at some of the reasons why.
They’re more flexible for the viewer
I’m sure you’ve heard this a million times, but mobile really is the dominant format for the consumption of media today. This is extremely important for video as we consider the great variety of times, locations, and social settings that users might be in when watching your content.
Eighty-five percent of all videos are watched without sound. This is because sound, or even earphones, aren’t always an option for your audience, so you’ll need to be able to put your message across without it. Moving images alone aren’t enough for this purpose, and subtitles offer a perfect solution to sound-free messaging on any device. This is especially critical if you’re a B2B company; there’s a good chance your target audience will need to watch from the office where noisy videos aren’t such a great idea.
Google loves them
One problem with video is that the files served on your domain won’t actually be readable by a search engine. Google will know that the file is there, but it won’t be able to look inside and know exactly what is said in the video content. This is where subtitle files become useful for SEO.
If you’re using a separate caption text file, search engines can actually scan these and add the keywords to your domain’s SERP value. If you’re using a long video, this adds a tonne of searchable content and makes your website easier for customers to find.
They make autoplay viable
Autoplay video is one of those fad marketing tools that very quickly fell out of vogue with consumers. Initially, it was extremely effective at grabbing attention and building engagement on a page. However, as more and more companies started to see the benefits, audiences got tired of being hounded by noisy videos that they didn’t opt in to watching.
The problem wasn’t with video – moving images are easy to ignore – but with the sudden, loud voiceovers and music that scared the daylights out of visitors. Nowadays, autoplay is a fast and effective way of getting your customers to bounce immediately.
That is, unless you use subtitles. By adding captions to your video, you can turn off the noise and still benefit from the communicative power of video. Check out this great guide to find out how to embed a Youtube video with muted autoplay.
Visual storytelling is where its at
At the studio, we use elegant, premium animation that tells your story through moving images. Audio is useful for building a human connection and driving home the message, but it’s not the main event. Visual media is rich, visceral, and highly compelling. By adding subtitles to your video you can underpin this visual storytelling style with a written message.
Remember, Facebook’s automated caption option works sometimes, but you’re very likely to end up with some dodgy sentences in there. Here at the studio, we add subtitles to your video by default. Why? Because that’s what it takes to create an impactful, high-converting animated video. Most other animation companies would charge you extra for this service but, for us, it’s just one more part of our handover package. We’ll do everything we can to make sure your animation is a success.
We hope that’s convinced you that you desperately need subtitles for your next animation project! Get in touch if you’d like to know more about the process.