While text-based content will always be a crucial part of any content and communications strategy, we’re beginning to see the power of audio really shining through. As most businesses already know, video as a platform for sharing a brand message has been growing for years. And now, podcasting is doing exactly the same. There are more than 460 million active podcast listeners around the world in 2023. And experts predict that the global podcasting industry will be worth $94 billion by 2028.
The problem? Perfecting audio content is a lot more challenging than perfecting text. When you’re dealing with text, getting it ready to publish is as simple as chopping and changing the words in a word processing tool. With audio, it either means editing waveforms, or recording from scratch.
To make audio more accessible to businesses, how this type of content is managed needs to change. That’s what Descript is setting out to achieve. It makes editing audio as easy as editing a document.
Descript is an all-in-one, AI-powered tool that uses speech recognition technologies to make editing audio quicker and easier. It includes a full range of features for talk-driven media, including…
- Video editing
- Screen recording
- Clip creation
But the big question is this: is it really as easy to edit audio as it is to edit a text document?
The Descript team have based their development on Google Docs. The result is an audio editing tool that businesses can use in much the same way as a cloud-based word processor… but for audio files.
Some of the options available to businesses through Descript include:
- Rearranging the structure of an audio file simply by editing the text-based transcription, which is created automatically by the software. Any changes made to the text are applied to the audio.
- Adding new words/sentences to pre-recorded audio without having to re-record. Descript creates an AI clone of the voice, making it easy to type in new words to a text file and hear them spoken.
- Quickly cutting out any unnecessary words, including filler words like ‘um’. By simply removing these unwanted words from the text file, they’ll automatically be taken out of the finished audio.
- Publishing audio content and requesting feedback. Inspired by Google Docs’ comments feature, Descript allows listeners to comment on the video or podcast, providing insight into its effect.
Ultimately, Descript manages to achieve two things that have, until now, been challenging. Firstly, it makes creating audio content more accessible to businesses lacking the resources to fully embrace video and podcasting. Secondly, it makes it quicker for businesses that have already mastered audio to generate videos and podcasts, freeing their teams up for new innovation and further activities.
It all starts with transcription
There’s one important thing to remember about Descript: the ability for businesses to edit text files based on their audio content relies heavily on the ability of the tool to accurately transcribe the audio. So how good is Decript’s transcription service? The team says that it produces half the number of errors as other transcription services. But at the end of the day, it’s still just 95% accurate.
There’s good news, though. Firstly, if you have the time, you can of course make any necessary edits to get the transcription spot-on before you start amending the text. Secondly, if you don’t have the time, you can always pay for Decript’s White Glove service. This is an add-on feature which uses human transcribers rather than AI, delivering more accurate text files for you to get started with.
If you’ve been steering clear of audio due to the challenges that come with it, Descript can help. The tool is being used by brands such as Audible and the New York Times, helping businesses to engage and connect with their audiences more closely, without generating a tonne of additional work.