Script Guidelines

We’ve produced hundreds of scripts for broadcast spots, corporate videos, live events and more. In the event you’re providing your own script, here are a few requirements to avoid the most common pitfalls.

One of the most difficult challenges in video production is saying everything you need to say in a limited amount of time. The word count of your script is critical to ensuring your message comes across effectively in the targeted running time. Having a perfectly timed script will ensure our time on set is spent creating great content, not cutting down copy.

Keep this word count guide handy when drafting your script. Keep in mind that 150 words per minute is the go-to standard, and remember to include any required verbal disclaimers in your word count.

 

30 seconds 60 seconds 90 seconds 2 minutes
Slow Read 65 words 130 words 195 words 260 words
Typical Read 75 words 150 words 225 words 300 words
Fast Read 90 words 180 words 270 words 360 words
Speed Read 100 words 200 words 300 words 400 words

 

Here are a few more tips to ensure your script will be video-friendly and deliver on your objectives.

  • Keep your target audience in mind when drafting your script. Is your video playing to a large assembled crowd, or is it designed to resonate one-on-one? Make sure your language—especially pronouns—will connect with your audience.
  • Writing for video is much different than writing for print or the web. Avoid the temptation to reuse copy from other mediums that are friendlier to detailed lists and long, complex sentences. Instead, use approachable, conversational language in short, declarative sentences.
  • Statistics, facts and figures don’t always need to be spoken verbatim. For example, say, “We doubled our sales last year” instead of “Sales increased by 100% in 2015.”
  • When in doubt, cut it out!

Finally, here is a sample script template you can download.