We don’t need to preach to you about the benefits of video or tell you what an important place visual content holds within the marketing mix.
You wouldn’t be on this page if you didn’t have some idea that, as the most dynamic and engaging content type of the lot, videos are essential for driving engagement, increasing awareness and cementing the positive reputation of a brand.
Yet, like many things in marketing, creation of your video isn’t the end of the process. It’s only the beginning.
Along with ensuring that you have a plan in place for the promotion and distribution of your marketing video, testimonial reel or animation, it’s essential that you don’t ignore the power of the written word completely.
A written transcript, along with subtitles or ‘closed captions’, can super-charge the effectiveness of your video content, both in terms of getting the video found in the first place and maximising opportunities from those who view it.
What is a video transcript?
A video transcript is the written representation of the spoken words used within your video. From the words spoken by voiceovers or interview subjects to recordings of live events and presentations, a transcript includes everything that is said, as well as any non-verbal cues such as environmental sounds or ‘scene-setting’ instructions.
Transcripts can also be used to create closed captions or subtitles to support your video content, with many video hosting programs enabling you to create these automatically with a simple upload process.
“If using YouTube to host your video, Google makes it really easy to include captions. Simply upload your transcript and it can sync your words with your voiceover using its voice recognition software. Meanwhile Facebook allows you to upload captions in a similar way”
The importance of video transcripts in getting your video found
You’ve created a fantastically engaging, professionally-produced video for your business that you are really proud of. You upload it to YouTube, embed it within your website or landing page and wait for your rapturous audience to arrive and tell you how much they love the video too. Only they never arrive.
The problem isn’t your video. What’s missing is a transcript – a transcript full of keyword-rich, indexable content for search engines to find and display to your target audience.
The SEO benefits of video transcripts
A video transcript acts in the much the same way as an in-depth blog post. Providing a natural way to integrate relevant keyword phrases throughout your web page that Google and other search engines can crawl.
This content can be formatted into easily digestible paragraphs, complete with SEO-friendly headings and subheadings that search engines look for to determine the topic and relevance of your webpage.
You can also include links within your written transcript – with internal links also enabling your website to benefit thanks to a lowered bounce rate and increased time-on-page and awareness of other products and services you may sell.
While the title, tags and description of your video will go some way towards helping search engines to decide how relevant it is to browsers, a written transcript published alongside the video itself will do so much more.
Reach a wider audience with a video transcript & captions
Imagine watching a film or TV show on silent, without subtitles. Even if you know the general story and can hazard a guess at what’s going on based on what you see, you would quickly find yourself confused about what’s happening or how you’re supposed to feel when it ends.
The same is true when watching any type of marketing video, even relatively simple ‘explainer’ videos that provide fairly obvious visual cues or wording within them.
Including closed captions along with a transcript will give your audience the whole picture in the event that they have to watch it without sound (for example when at work), or if they are trying to view it on a slow connection.
Rather than force the viewer to give up or put their viewing on hold until later (we all know how the best intentions often fail because ‘life’ gets in the way), allow them to ‘read’ the content of the video instead.
Increased accessibility & global reach
A transcript, along with subtitles, enables your video content to be consumed by a much wider audience such as the visually impaired – increasing the scope and reach of your message.
When doing business within global markets, it is also possible to use captioning or to include transcripts in languages other than your own. So if your potential audiences speak a language other than the one spoken within your video, you can ensure that your message is not lost and you are not missing out on that potential engagement.
Top 5 tips for getting the most from video transcripts
Videos are great for generating inbound traffic to a webpage, either from search engines or social media. But to ensure you give your video content the best chance of getting found, follow these five simple tips:
- Give each video you product its own landing page
Keep the content focused and relevant depending on the content of your video
- Don‘t neglect your formatting of your transcript
Rather than simply posting one big block of text, include paragraphs that are easy to digest, headings and subheaders to enable readers to make it easy for search engines to crawl and for readers to scan through the content if they wish
- Repurpose the transcript
Once written, your transcript can be used to create additional content, from a series of blog posts to a downloadable pdf.
- Include clickable links within your transcript
Internal links will help to provide additional context for the reader as well as increase time-on-site, something that Google looks at to determine how relevant and engaging a website is.
- Beware the auto-translator
It may be tempting to use auto-translation programs to generate your transcript quickly. But be wary, as these are not often as accurate as you like. Voice recognition software still has a way to go, and the last thing you want to end up with is a confusing and incomplete translation of your video.
Helping you make the most of your visual content
Having produced professional videos for businesses for over 30 years, we understand the power of visual content when it comes to achieving specific goals.
We pride ourselves in our ability to solve your problems creatively, working with you from initial concept through to delivery and beyond, to ensure that you connect with your audience meaningfully, strategically and with maximum return on investment.