Imago Blog

YouTube Tips for Business - Episode 11

This week we’re looking at making your videos more accessible.

There are various reasons that your viewers may not be able to hear the sound on your video. The first and foremost of those is that they might be deaf. But it might also be that they are viewing the video somewhere where it’s too loud or where they need to be quiet and so can't have the sound turned up. Social media platforms like Facebook and LinkedIn often auto play videos whilst keeping them muted.

For all those circumstances subtitling your online videos is absolutely key and you may already have noticed that every video in this series has been subtitled in order to make it more accessible. You can turn subtitles on from the bar at the bottom of the video on a computer. If you’re on mobile tap the screen and then select the three dots in the top corner and you’ll find captions in the options there.

Thankfully YouTube makes it very easy for you to subtitle videos and it even takes some of the hard work off you. Shortly after uploading a video to YouTube an automatically generated set of subtitles is added to it. The time this takes depends on the length of the video. As an example each of the videos in this series has its subtitles generated in about 10-15 minutes.

Now you can just leave it at that, however those subtitles aren’t perfect and so you’ll probably want to edit them before your video goes live. I’ve done a whole extra video on this process.

If you don’t have the time to do that then you can use transcription services such as who will do the hard work for you and be more accurate than the automatic captions. They’ll supply you with the right file type which can then be uploaded to YouTube.

Just a quick word on other Social Media platforms. Facebook and LinkedIn prioritise videos that have been uploaded to their websites so whilst you can link to and embed YouTube videos there you might find that fewer people see them. In this case you might want to have your subtitles burned into your video file so that they can’t be turned off and will appear wherever you upload your video. You can do this using a free program called Handbrake and I’ve done another video tutorial on that process.