Why Adding Captions to Your Social Videos is an Absolute Must in 2020

Video has become more than just a trend in content & social media marketing. Thanks to social platforms, captions are becoming more of a must than ever.

October 27, 2023
5 min read
Why adding captions to your social videos is an absolute must in 2020

Video content has become more than just a trend in content marketing and social media marketing. Video content has become the single most important type of content, and it continues to rise in marketers' and consumers' preferences.

According to some research, video streaming and downloads will account for 82% of global internet traffic by the end of 2022. Video content has also been proven to be consumers' favorite type of content to see from a brand on social media. In fact, 54% of consumers say that they want to see more video content from a brand or business they support.

It’s not hard to imagine why. Video content, like mostly all visual content, is easy to understand and easy to be consumed. It has the capacity to transmit an instant message with minimally required concentration and attention from the viewer. These are only some of the reasons why 75% of marketers use videos in their active campaigns.

However, video is not always the single and infallible answer to everything. The human brain processes images 60x faster than words but, nevertheless, there are enough reasons to pair videos with text and, most of all, with closed captions and subtitles.

Reasons to Create Closed Captions and Subtitles

Captions and subtitles aren't always the first things a video producer or a vlogger thinks about. However, here are a few good reasons to start thinking about it right now.

  1. Hearing-impaired followers. If your video has dialogue, people who suffer from hearing impairment will not understand them unless you caption them. It may be extra work but it's worth it, considering you want to maximize your reach.
  2. People who watch videos on mobile, in public. Some people watch videos when they are in public, at the office, or at night. For whatever reason, they choose not to use the sound or they cannot use it without disturbing those around them. Closed captions and subtitles will allow them to receive the message and understand it.
  3. Muted autoplay. Some social media platforms allow you to adjust the settings and receive your auto-played videos with muted sound. Muted play may deliver your message when it is set on auto but only if it is captioned or subtitled.
  4. People who are not native in your language or who have trouble understanding the spoken word. Besides the hearing impaired and the people who, for one reason or another, cannot listen to an audio stream, there will always be people who will find it hard to understand an audio stream without subtitles.
  5. Engagement and ROI are two of the main metrics you have to measure when you assess a visual marketing campaign. They all depend on the audience spending more than a few seconds on your content and when it comes to video, subtitles may help you in this area.

How can you add captions or subtitles to a video?

When it comes to subtitles and captions you have always two choices: the easy way out and the hard way out.

In the past, there was a limited choice available: you could have subtitled the video line by line, with tools such as “Subtitle Workshop”. However, working with subtitlers was hard as you had to learn the software (typically not easy), write and synchronize your subtitles, and save them in one of the tens of different formats available.

Now, you have also the choice to work with a web app or service that allows you to automate the process.


There are plenty of tools and resources a marketer can and should use during a digital campaign. If they're considering including videos in their campaigns, then it's time to add another one to the list.

With Zubtitle, you can fully automate the captioning process. This state-of-the-art software automatically transcribes speech and converts it to captions, and it does so in just a few minutes.

Considering that there’s a big group of possible customers that will watch your social media videos and presentations without sound, using Zubtitle or other similar services is not only an option but a required process for a successful marketer.

How to Use Zubtitle:

First of all, you need to create your account on the platform. There are several plans available, including a free option. Simply choose the one that fits best your short/long-term strategies.

The next step is to upload your video. The app is web-based, so your uploaded files will be available and accessible from your account.

Main video dashboard on Zubtitle

Once the video is on Zubtitle, it will automatically generate the transcript. If you are not pleased with the outcome, and there might be times when the software does not correctly interpret some words, you can edit the text right there on the main screen.

Editing social video captions in Zubtitle

You can also edit caption breaks as well if you notice discrepancies between the video timeline and the actual transcript. Or, you can add new breaks, if you want to adjust the size of the text that is displayed at one time on the screen.

Editing caption breaks for social video in Zubtitle

As you can see, everything is easy when you are using the right software. And Zubtitle is the right choice if you want to save time and money on your transcripts and subtitles.

Where to use subtitles and captions?

Apart from YouTube, where they can be generated automatically (if you want to), there are a lot of other social media channels where captions may help your marketing campaign.


The most popular social media channel has a lot to offer besides videos. However, if you decide that your content strategy will include video, you should know that videos are muted by default on some devices unless you click on them. In some cases, when your video is embedded on other websites and pages, you need to manually click on the “volume” button in order to unmute them.

That's why captions are so important, like in this example, especially when you promote your posts or choose to pay for ads.

Here's another good example that shows us the importance of captions on Facebook videos.

In this case, a video posted by Scott Stratten went viral and had over 1,300,000 10-second views with muted sound. “Maybe they were looking at something else in their timeline, while the video played, or they left to investigate that smell I referred to earlier, but the video is useless without sound,” he said, referring to those 10-second plays.

What can we learn from this example?

We learn that a lot of people will see your auto-played Facebook videos for just a few seconds, with muted sound. Thus, in order to catch their attention, you should use captions and text transcriptions.

How to add your captions on Facebook

You can burn captions into your video with Zubtitle or you can add SubRip (.srt) subtitles on your Facebook videos. Once you have an .srt file (Zubtitle does this too), it's very easy to do by performing a series of steps described here.


You can share videos with traditional Instagram posts, Instagram Stories, and Instagram Ads as well. They all start muted on mobile devices and only play with volume once the viewer clicks on them. It’s a great platform for storytelling but storytelling needs a story in order to be effective. And a muted video does not communicate a story.

People who browse their timelines, just like on Facebook, don’t always click on all the posts they browse through.

That's why it's important to gain maximum value from that couple of seconds your audience sees your content before moving on to another post.

How? Well, just like before, you need subtitles.

Unfortunately, there is no option for adding .srt subtitles on Instagram.

Instead, you’ll have to “burn” your subtitles directly on your video.

What do you need?

Once again, there is an easy way and a hard way. The easy way is to use Zubtitle to burn captions directly into your video. The other option is to use professional software like Adobe Premiere Pro or to hire a professional who works with this kind of software.


The good news is that, on LinkedIn, you can add subtitles in a similar way that you would for YouTube and Facebook videos. Here’s an official tutorial.

At the same time, you can use a hard subbed video as well, especially if you already created one for Instagram with Zubtitle. Here’s an example of a similar video.


On YouTube, you have the opportunity to let their AI speech recognition software auto-caption your videos. The official tutorial explains how to do this in just a few easy steps.

You can add your own .srt subtitles as well. All you need to do is to go to your “Video Manager”. Select the drop-down menu available next to the video file you want to play with subtitles and choose the “Subtitles/CC” option:

Next, you will have three options available:

  1.          Upload a file
  2.          Transcribe and auto-sync
  3.          Create new subtitles

The option we are interested in here is the first one: Upload a new file: Choose your file (a locally saved .srt subtitle) and upload it on YouTube.

The problem with using YouTube's native auto-captioning is that it can be very buggy and often doesn't accurately transcribe your video. That's why Zubtitle is always your best bet to add captions and subtitles.

Are you ready to add captions to your social videos?

Sign up for a free Zubtitle account today to get started! With our free plan, you can create two videos per month. To create up to 10 videos per month (and remove the Zubtitle watermark), check out our standard plan.

Create your first video with Zubtitle

See why creators love using Zubtitle – start editing your videos risk free with two video credits on us!