Maximise your video content with MP4 transcription

Woman being recorded on video

If you create video content or work with video, chances are that you will have come into contact with an MP4 file. The global appetite for video content continues to grow exponentially with 91% of businesses using video as a marketing tool in 2023. Simply put, that’s a lot of MP4 files.  

However, many creators and businesses are missing out on an opportunity to generate greater awareness, increase engagement and improve the accessibility of their video content. As such, despite the widespread uptake of video, there are some important elements to consider in order to make the most of it. 

By its very nature, the visual and audio combination that makes video unique can hinder accessibility, particularly for those who are Deaf, hard of hearing or navigating learning disabilities. Video content also isn’t innately searchable. This reality can make it awkward and time-consuming to work with, as well as more challenging for viewers to discover and navigate. 

Luckily, transcribing mp4 to text is a tried and tested way to maximise the potential of video content by delivering a more accessible and inclusive viewing experience, increasing discoverability through search, and boosting engagement. 

What is an MP4 file?

MP4 is an abbreviation of MPEG-4. It is a container file format for multimedia files, which means it can hold several types of information such as video, audio, meta-data and subtitles.  

The MP4 format is one of the most popular formats for video and is used by major digital media platforms, such as YouTube. You can easily tell if you have an MP4 file by checking for the file extension .mp4.  

Can you get a transcript of an MP4 file?

Man wearing headphones transcribing an MP4 file at a computer

MP4 to text transcription is relatively common. There are several options available to convert mp4 to text. You should consider the implications of the different methods alongside your budget and time constraints. 

1. Built-in tools 

Many video hosting platforms offer built-in tools to generate transcripts automatically for users. The options available will depend on the platform and can also be linked to the type of account you have set up. 

Built-in tools typically use Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR) technology to convert the audio in the MP4 file to text. ASR services can produce results very quickly but fall short of the accuracy levels required by creators and businesses alike.  

Ensuring the resulting transcript is fit for purpose requires you to check and edit the text, which can be very time-consuming and a drain on resources. 

2. DIY 

It’s also possible to attempt to transcribe your own video content, although this is not a feat we’d recommended. On average, transcribers take four hours to transcribe an hour’s worth of content. If you’re not a professional transcriber, it would take far longer, and the accuracy of the output would still not be guaranteed. 

Plus, if you’d like to add captions to your video or have an interactive transcription that works in time with your content, a specific format for the transcript is required. 

3. Professional transcription services

As MP4 files are so widely used and a universal format for video content, a professional service can support you in transforming MP4 to text. You’ll want to look for human services, such as Take Note’s, or hybrid services that provide guaranteed accuracy levels. With purely ASR solutions you will run into the same checking and editing issues apparent with built-in services.  

If a service proclaims to offer instant or auto transcripts, they will be using ASR technology and are likely to require significant checking and editing.  

How to transcribe MP4 to text 

The process of transcribing mp4 audio to text is simple and will be similar across the majority of providers.  

However, gaining a high-quality and accurate transcript of your MP4 file from Take Note is incredibly simple. Just follow the steps below:  

  • Upload your file to Take Note’s fully encrypted and secure online portal. 
  • Select the relevant service and your required turnaround time from the options available. 
  • An experienced transcriber will work on your file within the secure portal. 
  • Receive an alert that your finished transcript is ready and download it from the portal. 

With video transcription, we recommend choosing our ‘captions’ service if you plan to add closed captions to your video or if you’re adding the content to a video hosting platform, such as Vimeo or YouTube. The captions service will deliver your transcript in SRT format, which is ideal for uploading to these platforms. You should check for file compatibility before getting started. You can always contact Take Note’s team should you have any questions. 

Maximise your MP4 to transcript efforts 

Computer screen with video editing software open

When you invest the time and effort to transcribe video to text, you’ll want to ensure that you gain the full potential and value from the transcript. There are numerous ways and reasons to use a transcript, including: 

  • Improving accessibility with closed captions – ensure your content is accessible for people who are deaf, hard of hearing or have learning needs. 
  • Increasing engagement and reach with captions and transcripts – those who choose to watch without sound or are non-native speakers can more readily engage and understand the content when a text version is available. 
  • Enabling search – both for the viewers of your content and for search engines. Transcripts can be searched to help the discoverability of your content and support your SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) efforts. Search also allows people to quickly navigate to the specific moments in the content that are of interest to them. 
  • Easy repurposing of content – transcripts provide an easy format to help you identify key segments in the content that you can repurpose. This could include creating a video snippet for posting to social media or pulling out a quote to use in an eBook.  

The benefits obtained when you convert MP4 to a transcript also relate to other video files and audio files too. Transforming an MP3 to text, or other audio file formats, follows a very similar process to a video file. 

Whether you are looking to convert MP4 files to text or want to transcribe audio to text, Take Note can help. Simply upload your video or audio content to the Take Note secure online portal and have it transcribed with 99%+ accuracy and at a guaranteed turnaround time. 

Kat Hounsell