It’s time we talked about transcriptions.
They might not seem like the most exciting form of content, but they represent huge repurposing potential if you use them correctly.
A transcript is simply the spoken word turned into the written word. It's not always necessarily word-for-word, however. There are different ways to transcribe your content, but good transcribers don’t include “ums” or “ahs” for example, and they'll edit lightly to prioritise comprehension over literal accuracy.
Listen to this episode or read on to discover why transcripts can be so valuable, how to have them done for a very low cost and how to use them to make repurposing easier.
Why Should You Make Transcriptions?
There are a number of reasons for making transcripts from your podcasts or videos.
Firstly, you make your content more accessible. It’s also great for SEO, it makes your content easier to refer back to, and it makes it significantly easier to repurpose your content into written forms.
1. Make Your Content More Accessible
Having a transcript available creates a better user experience for a potentially large portion of your audience.
Transcripts make your content much more appealing to
- Those who are hard of hearing
- People who speak other languages than yours as their first language
- Those who don’t like listening to podcasts or watching videos for whatever reason and prefer to read
- Scanners or simply busy people who might scroll through your transcript while listening to you to find a place they want to skip to
- Employees or commuters who don’t have their headphones plugged in and aren’t in an environment where they can blast out the sound
2. Improve Your SEO
The web is constantly crawled by bots that read and catalogue content so that it can show relevant content to searchers.
While they’re getting better at cataloguing the spoken word, it’s still far easier for these algorithms to read and index the written word than the spoken. They can’t scan audio or video very well, even now.
If you have a transcript below your podcast, perhaps under your show notes, it allows Google and other search engines to know everything you were talking about during the episode and helps them to index you properly for future search engine results.
3. Make It Easier to Refer Back to Your Content
Listeners don’t always have the time to listen to a whole podcast episode when they come across it.
With transcripts, it becomes much easier for listeners to come back and find the content they want or to skip to the point in the episode that they care about the most.
4. Fast & Easy Repurposing
Just as video is the richest content format in terms of repurposing potential, transcripts are a fantastic basis for any written repurposing.
They make it easier to create articles, social media content, and list-building downloads. More on that in a sec…
How to Create Transcripts Quickly & Cheaply
You have three options for creating transcripts:
- Type them out yourself
- Outsource to transcription services
- Hire your own transcriptionist
1. Creating Your Own Transcriptions (with a little help from AI!)
It is unlikely that your time would be best spent typing your own transcriptions straight from the audio since transcription services are quite cheap and, unless you are a blisteringly fast typer, it will be quite time-consuming.
However, A.I. software is now available that cuts down the time it takes to create transcriptions dramatically, especially if your audio is clear and well-enunciated.
One well-known A.I. transcription app is Trint. The cost is £13.20 per hour of audio under their most flexible plan. You get 30 minutes for free when you sign up so you can try it out before paying anything.
You’ll need to edit the text after the software has done its best to transcribe it, but the time it takes to correct these errors will likely be far less than if you were to do it from scratch.
2. Outsource to Transcription Services
At Content 10X, we’ve used Rev.com to create our caption files and transcripts from day one.
Rev uses real humans to create their transcriptions, so the accuracy is considerably better than that of A.I. software. The cost is a very reasonable $1 per minute of audio and the turnaround can be as short as a few hours.
You’ll still need to make a few adjustments here or there. The accuracy is not 100%. For the price, though, the value for money is very good.
3. Hire Your Own Transcriptionist
If you have a bit more of a budget to devote to transcriptions and you don’t want to have to spend any time correcting errors, get a professional on your side.
How to Get Maximum Value Out of Your Transcripts
You have six ways you can use your transcripts to benefit your business.
1. Offer Your Transcript as a Download
Some content creators offer their transcripts as downloadable PDFs just to offer convenience for their listeners and to give them a way to save the episode on their computer without having to download the audio file.
Others offer their transcripts in exchange for an email address as a “content upgrade” list-builder.
2. Include Your Transcript as Searchable Text on Your Website
One downside of only having your transcripts as PDFs is that search engines cannot crawl and index text in a PDF. You have probably come across PDFs that show up in search results, but that’ll only be because of keywords in the URL, not the body of text.
You get significantly more SEO value from hosting the text in HTML format on a page on your site, making anything you said searchable by Google or Bing.
You can still offer your transcripts as downloads, by the way, even if you’ve posted it on your site. Some people like the ability to save the content they like on their computer and will appreciate the PDF option.
3. Repurpose Your Transcript into a Blog Post
Instead of simply posting a transcript as-is, you can use it as the basis for a blog post.
In this case, you’re using your transcription service to get you halfway to a blog post and save you a lot of time. From the transcript, you would edit out anything unnecessary, tighten up the language, add formatting, headings, and structure to either expand on the points you raised or make them easier to read.
By turning your transcript into a high-quality article you can then post it on Linkedin, Medium, or on someone else’s site as a guest post.
4. Use Your Transcript as a Resource for Social Media Content
It’s much easier to find Tweetable quotes from a podcast episode if you have a transcript. You could tweet out quotes as they are or create visual graphics to make them more eye-catching and better promote your content.
If you create longer-form posts on social media (which might work better than you think), a transcript is extremely useful. You could take one episode and wordsmith chunks of it into five or ten (or more) social media posts.
5. Repurpose Parts of Your Transcripts into a Book or E-book
If you’re planning on writing a book or e-book, having transcripts of all your podcasts and videos might take you half of the way to writing it. With transcripts, you don’t even need to write it yourself to have it sound like your voice.
You could take your transcripts, come up with a working title and basic overview, and hand that over to a ghostwriter to turn into a well-written book that reads as though you wrote the whole thing yourself.
6. Use Your Transcripts to Help You Create a Course
Course creation feels like a daunting task. Writer’s block can show up in a big way when you’re creating content that you’ll put behind a paywall. With all your podcast or vlog episodes in hand as transcripts, along with the data on which ones were most popular with your audience, you can create valuable lessons and workshops faster and more confidently.
Also, however you’re creating your course, it’s expected these days that online lessons are available as downloads in both audio and written form so your students can take your course content on the go.
How Are You Going to Extract Maximum Value From Your Audio or Video Content?
The Content 10X ethos is to treat any piece of content you create as a resource to mine for more value, not to simply throw out into the internet and hope for the best.
The easiest way to get started if you have an audio or video podcast is to start ordering transcripts and offer them to your audience to download. Once you’re used to the process, it’s time to have fun multiplying the value you get from your transcripts in all the ways we’ve talked about above.
Tell me how you get on by commenting below, Tweeting @Content10x or by email on [email protected]. And if you want end-to-end content repurposing done for you click here to find out more about our services.