Frustrated with the inaccuracy of automated transcription?
In this article, you'll learn how to create a customized SRT file to add time-stamped captions to your videos.
What Are SRT Files?
SubRip Subtitle files (SRT) are plain-text files that contain subtitle information. They include start and stop times next to the subtitle text, ensuring they'll be displayed at exactly the right moment in your video.
SRT files work on most social media sites that let you upload captions. You can create a single file and upload it to your videos on each platform, instead of having to enter the subtitles manually into systems that may not work 100% correctly to begin with and can be cumbersome to edit to perfection.
Because videos autoplay on many social platforms, a high number of viewers watch without sound. By uploading SRT files for your videos, you'll get more engagement and higher viewer retention rates.
You'll also get immense SEO benefits. When you upload SRT files to native video platforms like Facebook and Instagram, they're indexed by Google and become crawlable. All the keyword phrases in your video become searchable, which helps you show up in more searches.
With SRT files you get full control over your video's subtitles. Automated transcription services are helpful but not foolproof, and otherwise great videos can look slightly less credible if the subtitles are sub-par.
While you can't currently add SRT files directly to LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram's organic content, and Pinterest, you can add subtitles to your videos with video editing software like Camtasia. The video file will have the subtitles hardcoded into it, similar to a text overlay. You won't get the SEO benefits with hardcoded subtitles, but you'll get the engagement benefits of having subtitles on your video.
You can create SRT files several ways. We'll look at how to create SRT files in a text editor or through YouTube, and then upload them.
#1: Use a Text Editor to Create and Format Your SRT File
You can create SRT files with almost any text editor that you have installed on your computer. For example, Notepad will work for Windows users and TextEdit for Mac users.
When you create an SRT file in a text editor, you need to format the text correctly and save it as an SRT file. This format should include: