It’s a fact: video transcription will help you or your business reach a wider audience. With video transcripts, people who are deaf or hard of hearing can access your content. So too can people in places where audio won’t work—think noisy environments like trains, or quiet environments like offices.
Transcripts also help your SEO. Google, Bing, and other search engines use the searchable text of a transcript to understand what your video is about, and this can result in a higher search rank for keywords within the transcript.
Although YouTube provides its own auto-transcription service, which syncs audio with text, this free feature achieves only around 60% accuracy. That’s just not good enough if you’re trying to project a professional image.
If you’re on the hunt for a professional to transcribe your videos, here are three crucial questions to ask them.
1. Do you note body language, tone of voice, and gestures?
If your audience will read the transcript without watching the accompanying video, consider asking your transcriber to include any visual information that provides key details to understanding the video.
2. Do you transcribe verbatim?
Consider whether you want a word-for-word transcription of what is said in your video. Including every um, ah, or stutter may be necessary for some projects, such as a file intended for official or legal purposes. However, keep in mind that a verbatim transcript can reduce readability and be less useful to the reader.
Talk to your transcription company about the associated costs of verbatim or non-verbatim transcriptions to see if one option suits your needs better than the other.
3. Which formats do you accept, and which formats do you deliver?
Discuss the video formats that the company accepts to determine whether they can work on your video. Also find out the format that you'll receive your video transcription in (it’s usually a Microsoft Word file). To determine which format is best for you, consider where and how the text will ultimately be used.
By asking these questions before you hire a video transcription service, you’ll be better positioned to find a company that delivers accurate, professional transcripts that meet your expectations.