Why Your Facebook Video Shouldn't Rely On Sound

  • Harry Hayes

Categories: Business Video Production Company Corporate Video Production Corporate Videos Creative Video Services Marketing Videos Product Marketing Product Videos Video Marketing Video Production Agency Video Production Expert Visual Storytelling

A lady has tape over her mouth, signifying no video sound.

85% of Facebook Video Is Played With the Sound Turned Off. So What Should You Do?

Yes, it’s true. You should never rely on sound in a Facebook video.

The reason for this is pretty simple. The default setting on Facebook videos is no audio. In other words, videos start playing with audio turned off. To hear them, viewers have to click the audio icon in the corner, and most people just don’t bother.

So what does that mean? It means if you’re doing a Facebook video, you can’t assume anyone will hear it.​

A typical video has a person talking to the camera.

You Can't Just Talk In a Facebook Video

I can’t tell you how many business owners make this mistake. They have a GREAT video. They did an AWESOME job explaining their business on camera.

So it’s only natural they want to use that same video on Facebook.

But trust me, it won’t work. 

Because only a tiny fraction of viewers will hear a word you say.

Visual Storytelling

The best approach for Facebook is Visual Storytelling. It means communicating with images instead of just talk.

Here’s an example. In a recent fundraising campaign for Children’s Healthcare, I filmed families struggling with sickle cell disease.

Unlike the other videos in the campaign, this execution (created specifically for Facebook) uses title cards to tell the story, so people "get it" even without audio playing. 

Of course, that doesn’t mean you have to leave the audio blank. I usually add music or sound effects, so people that turn on the audio will be engaged that much more.

Trade Show Videos

Visual storytelling is the same approach I use on trade show videos.

At your typical trade show, no matter what size your booth, you can’t control what’s in the booth next to you.

It could be a guy with a microphone, a rock band, or a big-screen TV with the volume cranked up. Or worse, it could be multiple booths with multiple big-screen TVs blaring different messages at the same time.

You can’t count on attendees being able to hear your video, so I recommend visual storytelling there as well. That means graphics. Title cards. Supers. Or at the very least, captions at the bottom of your video.

The point here is that video alone isn’t enough. An important part of production is optimizing each video for WHERE it’s going to play.

Sometimes that means producing more than one version of the same video. Or telling the same story in different ways


About the Author: 

Harry Hayes is the owner and executive producer at Content Puppy Productions, a corporate video production agency based in Charlotte. Before starting Content Puppy, he spent 20+ years as an advertising writer and creative director.

Blog by Content Puppy Productions