Through the years, I've been able to focus on these six tips to keep any video you're creating as engaging as possible. Here are my top tips for writing an engaging script:
1) Have an outline
Script writing starts with an idea broken down into small points. When writing a script, look at it in parts. Have an outline of your story and go with the flow of writing it. Before you write, identify the points or questions that will help tell your story.
Some questions to answer for yourself:
* What is my overall purpose?
* Who are my viewers?
* Why should my viewers care?
* What should my viewers take away from this?
* Did I get my message across?
From here, you can take these answers and start identifying a bulleted list of what you plan to write. Once you have this, you can start with the video script.
2) Write conversationally
One of the best things I learned in my years as a television journalist was how to write and that means how to write conversationally. I was taught early in my career to write as if I was talking to someone in front of me.
Don't think of your script as written content. Think of it as a conversational piece. So do away with business jargon, long difficult words or anything you would read in a newspaper article. Writing a script is visual and a personable approach to getting your story across.
3) Write to the video
When you start to write your script, think of all the visual elements you have gathered. If you're doing a screencast and want to point out several elements then write your script so that if follows your points.
For example, I'm pointing out that I have circled the word 'video' on my screen. In your script, let your viewer know that you have circled the word 'video.' This may be obvious but there are many people who forget this important facet in visual storytelling.
4) Talk to yourself
I have found the best script writers have used this technique over and over again.
They talk to themselves. That's right... They actually talk to themselves as they write.
If you're looking to write a script, talk it out loud to yourself. Repeat the words on your script and see if it flows with your voice and how you talk. Listen to your inflections and the emphasis you make in certain parts of a sentence. Oftentimes, you'll find yourself changing your writing depending on how you speak.
5) Keep it short, simple and direct
A long script means a long video and that's not something you want. Keep your watchers engaged by hitting the point sooner. Using more words than necessary may weaken your ultimate purpose for the video. The best advice is to keep your videos short, simple and direct.
After the first draft, go through your script again and cut, cut, cut! Make sure that every word serves a purpose and look out for these killers:
* Long words: If there's a simple way to say it then reword it.
* Too much information: There may be times when information is not necessary. Identify those moments in the script and remove them.
6) Tell a story
The best videos are the ones that leave a lasting impression. This is conveyed through emotion. Think back to the last video you remember. More often than not, you remember this video because it made you laugh or somehow it left you with a lasting emotional response.
The best stories are the ones that you remember. So when you write your script, remember that you want to leave a lasting impression. Make your audience laugh by telling a funny story at the beginning of your video or convey an inspirational moment by telling the story of how you were able to accomplish something. If you're giving a tutorial, talk about how you learned about the process and how students can benefit from it. Adding a human element to any video ultimately leaves a lasting impression.
Saves Precious Time
Writing a script not only organizes your thoughts but it will save you a ton of time. It's one of the biggest benefits script writing can have. Keeping your thoughts organized in script form will reduce editing time and recording time in the long run. It's a great time saver for those looking to create demos or longer videos.
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