For the Love of Captions!
In recent years, the use of captioning (and video creation in general) has skyrocketed. There are multiple benefits of captioning, and increased accessibility is just one of many. While increased video use can easily be explained through the rise of Reels and TikTok, the explanation for why younger generations prefer using captions for movies and videos might need to be clarified. Let’s dive into who uses captions, why people use captions, fast facts about captioning, and why captioning is a good business investment.
Who Is More Likely to Use Captions?
Think older generations primarily use captions? Think again! A recent study by Preply shows that the most frequent users of subtitles and captions are actually Gen Z (70%), followed by Millennials (53%), Gen X (38%), and, lastly, Baby Boomers (35%). This could be due to many reasons, including:
- Younger generations consume more video content than previous generations.
- Content creators view captions as an additional creative outlet.
- With increased attention on inclusivity and accessibility, hearing loss is becoming less stigmatized within our culture.
Why Do People Use Captions?
There are a variety of reasons why people use captions. According to the Preply study, respondents stated they liked having captions when:
- The audio is muddled.
- It is difficult to understand accents.
- Music makes it hard to hear the dialogue.
- Actors and hosts talk too quickly.
- They are multitasking.
- They are trying to understand plots better.
- They are trying to be quiet while watching online content.
- They are learning a new language.
Fast Facts About Captioning/Subtitles
- 50% of Americans use closed captions most of the time while watching videos.
- Scottish accents are the hardest for Americans to understand, followed by British and Irish accents.
- The top three hardest-to-understand television shows are “Peaky Blinders,” “Derry Girls,” and “Game of Thrones.”
- Subtitles are used more on streaming services than on regular television.
- Survey respondents stated the best subtitle feature is on Netflix, followed by Amazon Prime and Hulu.
Benefits of Captioning for Companies
Captioning provides a variety of benefits for companies as well. Videos with captions increase accessibility, improve engagement, and boost your SEO.
- Increase Accessibility: Adding captions to your videos make them more inclusive to everyone using social media, automatically maximizing your video’s overall reach. A recent WSJ article spoke with Scarlet May, a Deaf content creator, who said, “captions have exposed her to a whole new world of content.”
- Improve Engagement: Recent studies have shown that using captions in videos increases video views by 40%, and 85% of Facebook videos are watched on mute. Adding captions to your video helps grab attention and stops the scroll within your target audience.
- Boost Your SEO: Captioning videos can work hand-in-hand with your keyword strategy. How? Search engines cannot watch videos. They can, however, read captions and match them to specific keywords, helping your video rank higher in search results.
With ever-increasing video consumption and a focus on accessibility, caption use is here to stay. Captioning makes content inclusive for all viewers, can help with comprehension, and is a smart investment for your business.
Do you currently use captions while using videos? If yes, how often do you use captions? What types of videos do you watch with captions?
Contact Caption Pros for all of your captioning needs.