Weekly Round-up: a conversation about content sharing

Paddles this week

A quiet week in the canoe of tech, tools and tips this week, but the questions we did have were focused on content sharing. We expanded into a wider conversation of reading vs. watching vs. listening, and then explored the tech that makes that all happen.

Videos and Captions View post in The Paddle

Carrie asked who Paddlers recommended for Video captions and the answer was a unanimous Rev.com

And this sparked a line of questioning on reading vs. watching…

From Video to words and captions along the way

Here’s what we do with The Paddle Round-up videos step-by-step so we end up with a video, a video with captions and a write-up (and we could have an audio file, too):

  • Record the raw video in Zoom
  • Upload the raw video file* to The Paddle Facebook group with a bit of blurb summary (a paragraph)
  • Send the raw video off to Rev
  • Wait for the captions to come back 🙂
  • Top and tail tidying up the video–we use Adobe Premiere Pro for our video editing
  • Tidy up the captions (love Rev, but there’s always one or two not quite right translations so it needs a once over edit!)
  • Upload the captions to the video (after top and tailing the video, the captions may need be to re synced by a second or two, which we do using this free SubShifter online tool)
  • Write up these notes in Google docs
  • Put the captioned video along with the words into our WordPress website (we use a customised GeneratePress theme)
  • Share the link to the website Resources post back into The Paddle Facebook group

(*if we wanted to, we could also pull out an audio file only when we get the raw video back from Zoom)

Why add the words?

In a not very scientific bit of research on LinkedIn we asked people what they prefer when consuming content –Watch vs. Read, and Reader vs. Writer

There was a huge vote in favour of being able to read content. And this was sparked off by me (Lucy) being frustrated when I was watching a content-led video–it was a ‘7 tips’ type–and there was no way for me to read the tips, and I really wanted to know them!  The video was 10+ minutes long with no captions, no summary, no write-up. And yes, it’s ‘only’ 10 minutes, but I could have skim-read the content in under 1 minute to decide if I wanted to know more or if, in fact, I’d got everything I needed. Instead, I was annoyed and tried to fast-forward through the video to get the tips (which I sort of managed, eventually).

All formats will help your content be consumed

Video is great for connection, getting to ‘know’ someone, and seeing who they are and what they’re like (providing they don’t have some odd ‘on screen persona’, of course!). But when it comes to consuming content, words make a big difference. Do add captions to your videos, not least as it means they can be watched with the sound off. But write words to go with them, too. Just having video of your content could be preventing more people consuming it who are readers before anything else.

Use tech & tools to turn your content into other formats

If you don’t want to use Zoom (or another video tool) first and create words from it, start with writing the words and turn those into a video instead. Head over to some of the freelancer sites if you need a hand with this, but your words could be put into slides–Google Slides or Canva would be great for this–and turned into video. You could read your words over slides (no need to worry about what you look like then!), and actually you can do that on Zoom, or direct onto a Facebook Live. Turn that audio into a podcast? Or just share the audio files as downloads instead.

If you do start with video or audio, you can get a full transcription from Rev for the words that way.

For the skim readers, have good headings, sub-headings and highlights on your blog. Yoast SEO (a WordPress plugin) helps you with ‘readability’ so that’s great for your blogs. When you’re designing documents (in Canva, Google Docs, etc.) make sure you’re formatting for readability and skimmers, too.

Know your audience and create content for them

This is a ‘tip’, not tech & tools now, but important to add that it’s always smart to create content for your audience–whether that’s for marketing or for your customers–in the format they most want to receive it. If your customer is Gareth, for example: he’d like a mash-up of Audible, Spotify and podcasts please! Me: I’d like words, mostly–a few illustrations and the odd video intro so I can ‘meet’ you.

If you’re spending time and ££ on tech and tools, make sure they are worth it by creating content you know will be consumed and valued.