Script Writing Guide
Do I need a script for my project? The answer is always yes! Having a script keeps things moving smoothly, and ensures you are making the points you need to make. Even in our “unscripted” videos, a draft script is an efficient way to pinpoint messaging and structure, and plans for execution. Draft scripts are also useful blueprints on-set, helping to ensure we capture everything we need.
Can I hire someone to write it for me? Yes, us! We offer a range of script writing services, from consultation and assistance to full scripts.
Can I write it myself? This can be the perfect option for those on a tight budget that want to tackle a little extra work! By choosing HouseTwelve, we can do one of two things for you:
- Write your script with you, using our proven expertise.
- Give you the tools to write your own script – which saves you money.
Scriptwriting sounds daunting, but can be accomplished with some guidelines. By using our script writing guide (and free downloads below) we can help you to achieve greatness with your script.
Have A Plan
It’s important to plan what you’d like to accomplish with this script, and some main points you’d like to convey. Here are a list of questions to help get the ball rolling. Use this to write a brief for your video.
- What is your video’s purpose?
- What action would you like your viewers to take?
- Who is your target audience and what are their online habits?
- What value is your video bringing to your audience?
- How would you like this video to be distributed (across social media, on your website, etc)?
By connecting with your audience’s needs and wants, you can begin to paint a picture of what you need to put in this script.
- Turn your plan into a story: Now that your plan and video brief has helped you gain a briefed understanding of what you want to achieve with your script, let’s turn that plan into a story. It’s time to take these core ideas and turn them into a logical storyline. Video production and scriptwriting are all part of storytelling, which is such a great tool for creating content that sells.
- Speak with a language and tone that relates to your audience: When writing your script, think of things in terms of using wording and phrasing that makes sense to a group that might not be an expert on the subject. This video needs to appeal to your audience, not necessarily you or anyone on your staff, this is about marketing and reach. If you can use relatable language that your audience uses, you’re well on your way. Keeping things conversational and not overwhelming is a crucial part of keeping the video engaging. Speaking of which, this brings us to our next point.
- Less is more – keep it short and sweet: Keeping things brief yet informative is the sweet spot. While generally, a good business marketing video should be only around a few minutes, there are instances where videos can be longer of course (training courses are a good example). The balance there is – make sure your words earn their place within the script. There should be little room for fluff words and filler. All those words end up wasting the time you need to spend getting and then keeping the audience’s attention. Some good tips and guidelines for this to work are
- Never repeat yourself (unless it’s for dramatization).
- Try to always say something interesting and unique
- Try to stick to main talking points (be prepared to sacrifice some of the small stuff).
- Use more than words to convey your message: Did you know that more than 85% of Facebook videos are watched without sound? Consider how that might impact your video. Do you have the right imagery to convey your message without sound? What can you do that will make people want to turn that volume button on? Use both sound and visuals to create your story and bring it to life. By working with us, we can help with both the script (if needed), and the imagery/video production quality.
- Read your script aloud: Now that your script is written, it would be a good idea to read it aloud to hear how it sounds, tweak any tongue twisters, and get an idea of how long it takes you to read it completely through at a reasonable pace. It’s important to speak clearly, not too fast, and make sure you put emphasis in the right places. Most experts agree that it should take somewhere around 30 seconds to read through one page of a script. After doing a few readings, you should be able to get an idea of what changes need to be made. Some good questions to ask yourself during this step are:
- Is this script the right length?
- Is the tone and language right for my audience?
- WIll this achieve the intended objective?
It may also be smart to look back at Step 1 and go over the questions there to make sure that your initial video script brief is in line with your finalized script.
- Make appropriate changes: To finish this script off and get it ready for your first day on set, make any changes you noticed during step 6. Once your script is ready to go, we will get to work making something awesome together !
Are you ready to tackle your script? The next step is to download our free writing success worksheet and script template below. Our worksheet walks you through the questions you need to ask yourself in order to organize and strategize your video script.
We’re excited to see what you come up with!