Is that ‘by the way’ or ‘bring the wine!’?
Your guess is as good as mine, but you’d be surprised at the number of scripts that have to be returned with queries just like that.
Time is such a valuable resource for businesses, so you’d be up for saving some, right?
So, aside from all of those lovely clients who are brilliant at sending through crystal clear scripts…..for anyone that may find it useful…here are some considerations to help keep those time-consuming script queries to a minimum:
The BTWs – any acronym or abbreviation always tell us (in the script itself) your preferred way of saying it. If it’s a particularly lengthy script, where words are repeated you could pull together a separate document. This is quite common in medical scripts.
Numbers/symbols etc. – same for these too! Or anything in your script that could be said in different ways (or not voiced at all!). Hashtag, slash/dash are common ones these days. Or dates – is it two thousand and twenty or twenty twenty for example?
How d’ya say? – if there are particular pronunciations, make sure they’re known. Tricky words perhaps or common differences like American v British – are we on a skedule or shedule?! Any unusual names of people or places and of course the brand name if there’s one mentioned (gotta get that right haven’t we?!).
Titles – Do you need your titles voicing? And numbers for that matter when you’ve got a list?
Formats – If you’ve got your script in different formats check with your voiceover artist how they’d prefer to have it. On a story board? No problem, that can be helpful to see the intended flow of the video or training, but if you have it ‘script only’ too that might be more helpful for when recording. I’d say just ask – it will save time having to extract it from a story board if you’ve got it like that already.
File types – and linked to the above, whilst you’re at it you could check what file type is helpful. No good sending it through in .pages for example if they’re a non-Mac user!
Timings – For those short and snappy numbers – make sure you let your voiceover know if you have a time limit. No more than 60 seconds? Great, but before you specify that just have a quick check that you can read it out loud in that time yourself. As a general rule we speak about 150 words a minute – a 500 word script is never squeezing into that 60s!
Final copy – are you sure? Is it signed off by everyone that needs to see it? Just one last check through – go on – you know you want to!
I’m sure there are more, and I know they all seem like no-brainers really, but you’d be surprised as I said.
Hopefully it’s helped as a quick reminder at least.
Anything else you’d find helpful – just let me know I can add it to my blog list!
(Audio version below)