Some voice talent supplement their worth to potential clients by offering script-writing services. Whether you are the voice talent, agency, or end-user of the voiceover itself, there are always important aspects to consider when putting the words on the page that you are asking the voice talent to ‘bring to life’.
In this guest post, submitted by Rebecca Acres of Gloc Media, you’ll find 5 important points to consider in making your copy easier for the talent to translate into the proper message for the listener.
5 Points To Consider When Composing A Voiceover Script
Many of us that are immersed in the digital age near enough write on a daily basis. This is often done through creating status updates, commenting on a friends profile, annotating an article or link to be shared or simply sending a text message. These forms of writing are intended to be read as text and not spoken aloud. When composing a voiceover script, what might look good and sound particularly professional in your mind, could also have the reverse effect when transferred to spoken word. It goes without saying that your voiceover dialogue is the very foundation upon which your recording session will stand. It is essential to construct a solid and efficient script. The following are some points you should consider when designing your voiceover material.
First, you should create an outline of what the accompanying visuals and/or audio are. A great way to visualize this is to form a storyboard. By building blocks of each main section of your content, you can then organize and schedule your script accordingly. Some frames of sound or film might move faster or slower than you anticipated. By writing the length and start time of each block, you will have a stronger grasp on choosing your words and how they will be pronounced.
Whilst this might seem only valid for content containing film, it is also important to consider visuals when a project is purely audio. Dialogues carry meanings, ideas, pictures and emotions, all of which can be broadcast solely through voice. Think about the last piece of spoken word you heard from a radio show or podcast. Should you recite that in your mind in a completely different tone, be it angry or sad for example, then the content takes on a different meaning entirely. Whether generated by our mind or what we see with our eyes, the varying elements of a voiceover are a crucial component in what evokes our emotions and thoughts.
Engaging with the consumer is of utmost interest. It doesn’t matter if you have the greatest voice, experience or accompanying media, if your content isn’t suitable for your demographic then you are fighting a lost battle. Research and pay close attention to your target audience and its attributes. Through doing this you will be able to sculpt your script to its ultimate potential.
4. Conversational Style
When composing a voiceover script it is easy to fall into report writing form. Continue to remember that the words will be spoken and not viewed. Read your copy aloud and keep editing until the full voiceover can be articulated comfortably and informatively. It is favored to use short passages with easy to understand, simple language. The term “conversational” can encompass many different forms. Most notably, an enthusiastic and friendly tone will help the listener or viewer to consume your content more thoroughly, so take this into consideration when writing your script.
Once you are confident with your dialogue you should analyze and evaluate it thoroughly. Acknowledge any possible complications or misunderstandings in the text body, whether there are sufficient pauses throughout, potential misinterpretation of pronunciation, accents and dialect used and the final effect of the media when accompanying the speech. After considerable assessment, test out your final arrangement on a focus group containing your targeted audience. Ask for some feedback, this is an excellent way to tailor your voiceover. Many find that using a professional voice over agency provides a project’s content with greater leverage after being given to the distribution channels.
Do you provide script-writing services to your clients? If so, what other advice would you share?
Rebecca Acres is a copywriter for Gloc Media, a digital marketing agency, in London.