Battling Auto-Mute When Posting Videos on Social

Auto-mute may be keeping people from hearing your video content, This is how to prevent that from Happening

If you are sharing video content to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or Youtube, each play reported for your videos may not equally relate to someone actually consuming your video content. Depending on the platform, there is a good chance that is was “auto-muted”.

Auto-mute simply means that by default, the video is muted until the viewer taps the video or manually adjusts the volume options. If you want someone to actually listen to your video, this can be a huge problem.  Twitter, Instagram, and Youtube all provide auto-play features but almost always play videos with mute toggled on by default. Facebook announced earlier this year they would start rolling out functionality that auto fades sound in and out as you scroll through videos in News Feed.  However, Facebook users can turn this feature off via their app settings.

Here at Wavve, our online tool helps podcasters, radio shows, or anyone with audio content easily turn audio clips into MP4 video files for social media sharing (like this). Because the audio is the primary focus on the video content, it’s important for our users to overcome auto-mute and encourage viewers to listen, rather than just watch. Here are a few tips to help you cut through auto-mute and get more video listens.

Start Strong in the first few seconds

Facebook and Nielsen found that up to 47% of the value in a video campaign was delivered in the first three seconds, while up to 74% of the value was delivered in the first ten.  This means that you don’t want to waste any time getting to the point. Be sure to include a caption with your video that explains exactly what the viewer will get out of the video and include a similar description in the social media post copy. Here is a quick video created with Wavve that helps illustrate the point:

In the above video, there is a clear caption included that explains the video is about “The Power of Yoga.” The video also includes an image of the host and an animation to help the user understand the context.

Add a Play Button and/or “Tap to listen” icon

Giving the viewer a visual representation that the video should be listened to can help encourage them to unmute. This can easily be achieved during the video editing process by adding icons to the video. Take a look at this video created by the Hot Breath Podcast that includes a play button icon directly within the video visuals:

Even if a viewer is browsing through their social feed and this video auto-plays on mute, the play icon will encourage them to tap the video which will automatically unmute the video and begin playing the audio.

Emojis & Hashtags

Especially for Facebook, Twitter, & Instagram, lead off the social post with emojis or hashtags that tell the user to listen up. We personally like kicking off every video post with #LISTEN🔊. We also see “🎙️Turn Speakers On🎙️”  being used with success. Try these other emojis and get creative!


Add Subtitles

This can be the most time intensive suggestion included in this post but it can be the most rewarding. Facebook reports that captioning a video increases average video view time by 12%.  Subtitles allow viewers to read what is being said in the video. They are usually added to the lower portion of the video in a dedicated space so they are easy to read and most effective when appearing as the associated spoken words are said.

Take a look at a video created with Wavve that has subtitles added (the captions in this example were added after the initial video production):

Most video production tools installed on your desktop will provide the ability to add subtitles. Keep in mind, captioning every word can be time intensive. Another approach is to only caption keywords that are said to help drive specific points of the video home. Here is another example of a custom made video from the popular Rich Roll Podcast:


Final Thoughts

If you want viewers to watch and listen to your video content, it’s important to take these suggestions into account. Pay attention to the platforms where you post video and make sure you understand which scenarios default to auto-mute. Taking a few extra minutes to add a play icon, improve the social copy, or add subtitles can go a long way in improving your video marketing content.

If you are a podcaster and want to leverage Wavve to create short episode previews, you can visit our website to create a free test account or get started with a custom template using a Premium Plan.

Have questions, ideas, or want to chat? Drop us an email or find us on Facebook or Twitter @wavve

Keep Talking,

The Wavve Team

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