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Facebook rolls out auto video captions to catalyse longer engagement times on ads


By John McCarthy, Opinion Editor

February 10, 2016 | 2 min read

Facebook has implemented a new video tool making it easier for people to watch content on the go.


The social network has released automatic captioning for videos, generating captions for advertisers to review before publishing it to its audience.

Research from the company found that 80 per cent of users react negatively when an ad overtakes control of the audio output and captions have been positioned as the solution to this issue.

It estimates that these captions increase viewing time by an average of 12 per cent.

Mark D’Arcy, chief creative officer at the Creative Shop, Facebook, said: "The best marketers are storytellers and they’ve always adapted their work to fit the most important medium of their time. Right now, that’s mobile video. And great mobile video is not about demanding people's attention it's about deserving it.

"Creatively, mobile video draws on the craft skills and experience we’ve developed as an industry building for film, TV and the traditional web and compresses them into a new form designed to immediately connect with an audience; we call this connection the three-second audition. This audition often takes place without sound so it’s important we use typography, graphics and subtitles to communicate our story so it resonates anywhere, anytime.”

In addition to the captions, Facebook has also made it so advertisers are now able to see the percentage of people who have viewed their videos with sound, on top of the rollout of moat integration and in-view buying.

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