The social audio app Anchor this month launched the latest – and possibly most powerful – addition to its toolset: the ability to convert audio clips into social media-ready videos.
Its incorporation of speech recognition and multiple output formats make it particularly useful – but it isn’t the only tool you can use to create social audio.
Here, then, are 5 other ways to achieve similar effects, from options hidden in dedicated audio recorders to animation tools…
1. Voice Recorder Pro: export as image
Last February I wrote about a method for creating videos from audio clips using Voice Recorder Pro. It basically involves adding an image to your audio, and then exporting to your photo album, creating an MP4 video clip that plays the audio over the still image.
If you have a strong image – or want the extra audio controls that Voice Recorder Pro has – then this is a useful alternative to Anchor’s caption-driven option.
2. Talkee: images with voiceovers
Talkee is an app for bringing images to life with voiceovers. But it can also be used to create social audio. You just need to make sure that you take an image first, and then begin recording the audio to go with it. For example, you might take a photo of an interviewee, and then record a quick answer to one question directly into the app. Journalism.co.uk experimented with it on their Facebook page – shown below.
3. Video editing software
Aside from all the dedicated apps and tricks, it’s worth remembering that social audio clips are really just video clips with a still image and an audio track. So you can create the same effect in any video editing tool – the key requirement is the ability to import an audio track or record audio directly into the editing tool (which rules out some iOS mobile editing apps).
If you have an iPhone which only allows you to import audio from the songs on the device, consider recording your audio as a video clip instead, but only using the audio track from that video.
If you are importing a still image remember to turn off the Ken Burns effect (a slow zoom into the image) which is normally turned on by default.
You can add captions to your video by splitting the video into multiple clips with the same image, but different captions on each clip.
4. Animation apps
At this point the line between audio and video becomes particularly blurred, but if your audio track includes someone explaining a concept or process that can be illustrated with animation, it’s worth considering services like PowToon, Biteable, WIdeo, Animaker and VideoScribe.
Most have a number of templates that you can use to animate particular transitions that can be adapted with custom captions to explain the particular process or concept that is being explained.
5. Audio for Instagram: WNYC’s audiograms
In 2016 the radio station WNYC, inspired by New York Magazine’s audio Instagram updates, created ‘audiograms’: automatically generated video showing the waveforms of an audio clip moving over a logo background.
[Later]: Other suggestions via Twitter