7 Reasons Captions on Social Media Videos Are a Must in 2022

Promo Team
By Promo Team
December 30, 2021 · 11 min read

Videos rule social media—because of their ease of consumption, ability to engage and retain the viewer’s attention. These are some of the many reasons why 54% of social media users are eager to see more videos from brands they love. But what if there was a way to multiply your videos’ impact and make them more effective? The answer you’re looking for lies in captioning your videos.  

Captions are the secret to creating scroll-stopping videos and hooking the viewers’ attention in crowded social media feeds. Video captions are text overlays that translate the audio into textual content and deliver the video’s message without switching on the sound. The best news – adding subtitles to your social media videos is easier than ever thanks to Promo. 

So, when videos already make up for 82% of internet traffic, what’s stopping you from creating power-packed videos with accurately synced captions that enhance the viewing experience? If you’re looking for more reasons to embrace the power of captions for social media videos, look at these seven power-packed benefits.

1. Create a seamless viewer experience

One of the most significant advantages of adding subtitles to your videos is boosting engagement across platforms.  

Videos with captions tend to perform better on every engagement metric—impressions, views, and likes. In fact, captioned videos receive 40% more views than those without captions. Social media users want to silently scroll through their feeds between their work or studies. So, a muted video will not make sense if there are no captions to convey the text, and a video with sound can appear intrusive.

That’s a key reason why all major social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram shifted to mute videos by default. You’d be surprised to know that users watch 85% of Facebook on mute!

When a considerable proportion of your audience is watching videos on mute, relevant and exciting subtitles can turn things around. Here’s how you can do it:

  • Create a transcript for your video before editing it.
  • Use a professional editing tool like Promo.com to add text overlays creatively.
  • Sync your captions to the footage and deliver a seamless viewing experience.

Besides a general preference to watch videos on mute by default, users also tend to complete watching a video once the captions hook their attention. So, captioned videos have higher watch times and enjoy a better completion rate. This is evident in that 80% more people watch a YouTube video to completion if it has subtitles added to the video.

Overall, you can win a competitive edge to capture your target audience’s attention and bring more eyes to your content with captioned videos.

2. Make video content inclusive for all

Apart from improving your content’s visual impact, captions and subtitles make your videos more accessible to all kinds of social media users.

If you want your videos to reach maximum users and produce an incredible impact, then factor in the users with hearing disabilities or deafness, including over 28 million Americans. Subtitles add a dimension of inclusivity to your videos and help garner more support from deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals. 

So, adding subtitles to your videos can significantly improve accessibility and maximize its reach. Here are a few things to remember while captioning videos with the deaf and hard of hearing users in mind:

  • Design or edit videos so that you can incorporate captions neatly.
  • Synchronize your subtitles with the footage.
  • Write more descriptive captions to cover any prominent background sound and add more context to your video.

Creating captioned videos can position you as an inclusive and empathetic brand while expanding the scope of user engagement to all types of users in your audience.

3. Optimize video for the multi-taskers

User behavior is one of the most crucial determinants of your video’s success. Without factoring in your target audience’s behavior, your video might fail to create the desired impact.

Analyzing user behavior is even more critical when targeting a predominantly Gen Z audience. With the choice to listen to music while chatting with friends and scrolling your social media feeds, your ideal viewer is constantly jumping from one app to the other and using three screens at once on average. This can naturally affect their ability to concentrate.

So, if you’re looking to target these multi-tasking users and fighting for their attention, adding subtitles to your videos gives you a great shot.  

While Gen Z users are not known for focusing on one thing, a captioned video makes it easy to narrow down their focus and pay attention. Here’s how it can benefit you: 

  • Students and young adults rely on video for better comprehension. That explains why 7 in 10 YouTube users rely on the platform for study or work-related matters. So, converting your longer blogs into short and enticing videos with subtitles will build a better connection.
  • Videos help in maintaining focus when there are so many apps to use. Captions in videos can improve their level of focus and raise their involvement in the video.

The bottom line is that your viewers are always doing something or the other on their phones. So, creating videos with captions is one of the ideal ways to deliver your message without forcing them into it.

4. Create global outreach for maximizing views

YouTube streams more than 1 billion hours of video daily, and Facebook receives over 8 billion views on videos daily, conveying the massive popularity of video content worldwide. But how can you find the opportunity to tap into this thriving global market and skyrocket your growth? With captioned videos.

Captioned videos create the perfect avenue to produce localized content in bulk and target multiple regions worldwide. You have the chance to reach new countries and build an international user base across various nationalities—simply by adding subtitles to your videos.

While dubbing the audio to a different language often hampers the viewing experience, translated captions are perfect for localizing videos. Subtitles are a relatively cost-effective solution to expand your viewership and create a global outreach.

Here’s how you can benefit from translated subtitles:

  • Explore previously untapped territories and build your presence in foreign locations with easily comprehensible video content.
  • Drive more engagement and increase conversions from new markets with enticing calls to action in your videos.

With video’s emotional appeal to influence individuals’ buying decisions, adding translated subtitles to your content gives you the upper hand to expand your audience base and bring more buyers from across the globe.

5. Grab attention and simplify comprehension

While you’re engrossed in deep work to ideate, create, and render spectacular videos, your ideal viewers are consuming your content while commuting, working, or endlessly scrolling through their feeds—mostly on their smartphones.

Irrespective of what they’re doing and where—when a neatly captioned video pops up on their screen, they’re naturally tempted to see what it’s about.

That’s what you can achieve with creative captions for your videos—capture their attention and make your videos more appealing. Besides, videos help viewers retain more information, no matter how complex. So, double down on captioned videos to create a better bond with your community and spread the word about your brand.  

Moreover, adding subtitles to videos can also help put across the right message. Videos hold a more substantial comprehension power than reading or listening—with 65% of users more inclined towards visual learning. 

Take the word of 85% of marketers who believe video is the most effective way to grab attention and speak directly to the audience. Caption your videos and multiply the impact of your visual content!

6. Enhance SEO ranking with caption indexing

Do you want to leverage video SEO and increase organic traffic for your brand? SEO helps in more ways than one. It can amplify visibility for your content while improving your discoverability as well.

 While you can optimize your videos with title, description, and tags, adding captions is a sure shot way to boost video SEO.

Search engines cannot view your video. But crawlers can easily index your video’s captions or transcripts and search for relevant keywords to rank your video. Closed captions come in readable text files that crawlers can read and evaluate. So, adding captions improves your chances of ranking higher.

Besides, embedding your videos on high-performing pages like blogs, landing pages, or home pages can also secure a higher rank.

 Here are some best practices to include video captions for boosting SEO:

  • Divide your transcripts into multiple pages and break up the long text for ease of readability.
  •  Scripting your captions allows you to incorporate relevant keywords and rank better for these keywords.
  • Closed captions boost watch time and increase views by 12%, accounting for a crucial ranking parameter. 
  • Search engine crawlers can index closed captions instead of open captions that are only encoded in the videos.

 Your video SEO strategy will differ starkly from your overall SEO efforts. You can rely on captions and subtitles to augment your videos’ SEO value for all the reasons highlighted above.

7. Escalate engagement and video performance

Your video’s capacity to engage with its audience directly impacts its search engine rank as well. A high-performing video with a greater click-through rate and lesser bounce rate is bound to rank better than the other videos.

But how can you make your videos more engaging to win these metrics?

Adding subtitles to your videos can work wonders for audience engagement. Here’s how: 

  • Writing great captions will help you rank higher for relevant keywords and align better with the users’ queries. If your content answers what the user is looking for, it’ll naturally have a lower bounce rate.
  • Subtitles will also enhance the videos’ accessibility. Users can watch your content on the go while juggling multiple tasks on their plates. So, instead of saving your video for later, a majority of viewers can watch it right away. Besides, closed captions are also ideal for viewers with a hearing disability.
  • Reading captions engrosses the viewers into watching the video for longer. 37% of viewers watching with muted audio end up turning the sound on to understand the video better.

So, videos with subtitles can incite curiosity and generate more interest among the viewers. Greater viewer interest can naturally strengthen the video’s performance in terms of engagement metrics. 

Best practices to create captions for social media videos

Now that you know all the different ways in which captioned videos can benefit you let’s look at some tried-and-tested tips to guide your efforts for captioning videos. These steps will allow you to achieve a more significant impact with your subtitles.

Formatting your subtitles

You’ll not find any specific guidelines for creating subtitles for social media videos. From the speech-to-text effects on Instagram to blocks of text on Facebook—users have many options to add text overlays on their videos. But if you want to create a professional-looking video to be publicized across platforms, it’s best to define a set of rules for creating captions and stick to it.

Here are some key aspects you can look into:

  • Readability is important. Choose an easily readable font and size for your subtitles. Pick an excellent contrasting combination for the text and the background to display the captions perfectly.  
  • Perform A/B testing to determine the best position for your subtitles. While most standard videos place captions at the bottom with center alignment, you can experiment with the positioning to add a creative touch to your content.
  • Synchronize your subtitles to provide a seamless watching experience. The captions should go exactly as per the audio.

These standard guidelines can make your captioned videos more accessible.

Translate for different languages

Videos on social media can go viral and reach the remotest corners of the world. If you’re looking to create such viral videos, be ready with multilingual captions.

Translate your caption transcripts into multiple languages, primarily for the markets you’re targeting. Use professional translating services and incorporate all the translation rules instead of relying on automated translators to keep your video’s message intact across different languages.

Make your content and subtitles dynamic

Captions don’t have to be boring. Instead, adding unique subtitles to videos can make your content more interactive and dynamic. A powerful video editor like Promo.com can help you add appealing text blocks for captions and produce high-quality videos instantly.


Creating videos with captions is one of the easiest and underrated ways to supercharge your content marketing efforts.

Whether you’re looking to engage more with your target audience and build a loyal community or aiming for higher search engine rankings to gain more visibility, captioning your videos can help you achieve multiple goals with a single shot!

If you’re wondering what’s the best way to add subtitles to your videos, let Promo.com take care of all your worries. Promo.com brings you a complete suite of editing tools, making it easy as a cakewalk to create spectacular videos and add optimized subtitles.

About the author

Promo Team

We believe that words shape thoughts and inspire action. Promo's content team is fueled by the motivation to help you to transform your words and ideas into powerful videos that help you communicate better with your audience and grow your reach.

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