SCRIPTING MISTAKES: In any film, the script is the heart of the production. The script is the core from which everything else spawns, from the visuals to the music and the overall tone and pacing. For corporate video, this fact does not change.
We’ve worked on countless video productions, and written hundreds of drafts of scripts at this point. We’ve seen what works, and what has created more issues than it was worth. Today, we’ll dissect the biggest scripting mistakes that we’ve encountered so that you can take these lessons into account as you put out video content for you and your business.
Mistake #1: Not Locking the Script
When we call a script “locked,” that means it is finalized, approved, and ready to proceed with preproduction. Again, everything – from the storyboard to the actors hired, to the music selection, and the visual style – all hem completely on the script. By far the biggest mistake we find is when people don’t treat locking a script as seriously and think that big script changes can always occur later in the project timeline. But consider what happens when certain assets, like graphics, are created or purchased, and certain actors have been hired before suddenly the script changes significantly – say, instead of a man, a woman would deliver certain lines. This results in a lot of preparations coming undone, and in video production, these kinds of late script adjustments can be akin to starting from the beginning again.
That said, that is not to say that there absolutely can’t be edits to the script, ever. What you should be aware of as early as possible is that the extra time ensuring that the script is as perfect and aligned with the creative vision as possible will be time well invested, and can easily spare you from many wasted hours in the future should near the end of the project cycle someone mentions somewhere that the script needed to be changed.
Mistake #2: Being Too Formal
When you’ve written the first draft of your script, or are reviewing the first draft written by your writer, try reading it out loud. Even if you’re used to writing written materials about you or your business, you may soon find that the way you write is very different from the way you talk. Video is still a spoken medium in most regards and has the end goal of being accessible to a very wide audience. You do not have the luxury of adjusting the way you speak or your tone based on the listener. As such, you want your content to instead just sound natural and conversational, easing the viewer into the content. This is as much a factor of your comfort and familiarity of going in front of a camera as it is your script writing, but how formal the script is will translate into your delivery, so always keep that in mind.
Mistake #3: Saying Too Much
We certainly are not discounting all the great things that there are to say about your business, or about your latest product or service. But the fact is that videos can and should only be so long. When it comes to videos, viewers know before they even press the play button how much of a time commitment your video is going to be. The longer it is, the more you had better be prepared to ensure your content is compelling enough for the viewer to stay tuned for each incoming second. At any point they can exit out – how we measure this is called bounce rate – and the moment they do you’re usually losing out on them catching the final Call to Action, which tends to be the biggest propellant to your main source of lead conversion as it guides your viewer to go where you want them to end up.
Ready to take a hand at making your own video content after familiarizing yourself with these scripting mistakes to avoid? Check out our extensive online course to become your own DIY video making expert. Prefer to let a professional team handle your video content? Contact us here to get started with Arc and Crown Media!