Why Your Videos Need To Work With No Sound (And How To Optimize For Silence)

With internet users spending more time watching videos online than ever before, digital marketing efforts focus on using this powerful medium to help grow businesses of all kinds and sizes. Nearly one million minutes of video cross the internet every second, and close to two billion people watch videos posted on YouTube, with breaks down to about a third of all online users.

If a picture is worth a thousand words, video content can harness tens or hundreds of thousands of written content. The math may be hard to figure, but videos can mean the difference in the success of a comprehensive digital marketing campaign. The rapid advancement of technology, the availability of high speed and wireless internet connections, and consumers’ ability to adapt to it has made video content easily accessible from any computer or mobile device.

Websites, social media networks, apps, and other digital applications allow businesses to reach and connect with large sections of targeted consumers. Video has become the most effective way of getting today’s attention-deficit consumer.

Why Do You Need Silent Videos?

Users can connect to the internet any time from just about anywhere, often when they are at work or school, and not supposed to be watching videos or are otherwise unable to listen to the content. Digital marketers have taken note of this trend and now stress the importance of video content that does not have or need the sound up to relay the message.

With over 2 billion people watching video content on their smartphones or other mobile devices in 2019, the trends will only go up from there. Projections see that number growing to over 2.7 million by 2023. That is a lot of people watching a lot of video content from the palm of their hand.

Whether they are commuters sitting on a train, people waiting in line at the local Starbucks, or students pretending to be studying, most online video viewers are on the go or otherwise distracted. Multitaskers are far more able to be drawn in and retain the information from a video that does not require them to turn the sound up and listen. Like any other online content, videos need to be optimized to reach the maximum amount of viewership.

How to Optimize for Silent Video Content

Videos perform exceptionally well when it comes to retention and conversion rates for your digital marketing efforts. With more users watching online videos without the sound, there are some tips and techniques to optimize silent video content to maximize their reach and effectiveness.

Keep It Short

Silent marketing videos are catering to those online users who are multi-tasking or otherwise preoccupied. They do not have a lot of time to stop and watch a long-form video. Scripts for silent videos should be kept short and able to tell a story without dialogue in under 30 seconds.

Grab Viewers’ Attention

With the sheer number of options and online users scrolling for new content on the go, viewer attention spans are low. A silent video will need to hit the viewer with bold imagery that will make them want to stop and watch. Make your video stand out among the rest from the first frame so viewers will want to keep watching.

News Style Approach

The practice of “native” advertising has been around for a long time. The basic concept is to mimic the content that will blend into the format or channel the ad is being used on. Social media and search engine algorithms have put a higher priority on news-style video content. Adapting silent videos to include styling and content elements to mimic news outlets’ stories will make the ad content more credible and acceptable.

Bold Visuals

In today’s crowded digital marketplace, it will often take a bold approach to get the attention of your targeted audience. Colors, video clips, animation, and motion graphics can be used to make a stark contrast to traditional, boring video marketing content.


Silent videos can often compensate for the lack of an audio component from the addition of subtitles or captions. Adding subtitles to an existing video is the simplest way to make the video viewable without the sound on. Using animation or bold text styling can draw more attention to the video and make it easier for viewers to follow.


Let the visuals speak for themselves. If your story and message are clearly delivered, and calls to action are large and clear, there will be no need to add audio, and the viewer will not feel like they are missing out on anything. Graphics and text can help move along the message and calls to action, but the visuals should carry the day.


Producing memes will inject humor into your branding and marketing efforts. Memes are a good way to keep the communication with your audience light and offer the chance to poke a little fun at your expense.


The most effective way to grab a viewer’s attention and compel them to stick around to watch the whole video is through the use of animation. Using animated scenes and characters will not only entertain and engage the viewer, but they will be far more likely to retain the information being presented and to act as a result.

Silence is Golden for Digital Marketing Videos

An important key to driving successful digital marketing campaigns is the ability to adapt to the latest technological advances and ever-changing consumer trends. Online users are continually bombarded with new content, competing for their attention and views. It takes a bold statement and persistent efforts to get noticed in the crowded digital marketplace.

With more online users watching videos with the sound down, marketing videos that are produced to be watched without the sounds will have a far greater impact to reach and grab the attention of today’s online consumer.

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Torrey Tayenaka
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