So…you want to write creative training scripts like a pro? Want your content and scripts to sound conversational, while still getting important information across?
Well, I’m here to tell you it’s both easier…and slightly harder than it sounds. Hopefully, through this little blogorama of mine, I can give you some tips and tricks for putting together writing projects that speak to your audience.
Speaking of Your Audience… Imagine Your Audience Speaking!
The audience is actually a great place to start when it comes to writing! You can find out important details about your audience through gathering data as a first step (check out our blog all about creating Learner Personas if you need help determining your audience!). It’s important that the tone you’re writing in will resonate with the recipient.
Try this: Think of your audience. Now, imagine them having a conversation with each other. As you write, try to place that voice in your head and employ the writer’s version of mirroring, which is a popular sales technique. Use language that is common to your audiences’ vernacular and find reference that you know they will relate to. And don’t always worry about perfect grammar, either. Language that is too formal can potentially distance the reader from you.
Read It Out
A way to help you make content more conversational is to read your piece out loud. If anything feels clunky, or unnatural, then change it up! Another way to help is your use of punctuation. Use contractions where it makes the flow better. Take into account how a comma will be perceived as a quick breath. Think of how you might break up a long section with a semi colon. And…wait for it…never underestimate the power of…ellipses.
Change Up Your Buzzwords
Something to watch out for is that your own personal set of favorite words, or buzzwords, don’t get overused. I’m never afraid to crack open a thesaurus to find alternate words. One of my rules is to not use a word more than once on a page. This can get tricky, but challenging yourself to find alternate words will make your work clearer, more concise and much more interesting.
Give Your Content a Theme
Themes and characters can also be an excellent way to kick start your creativity, too. If you’re writing something like an instructional voice over script, do you imagine it being read by James Earl Jones…or maybe Jimmy Fallon? Once you have a characterization, pick a theme; or vice versa. Maybe you’re doing a piece about investigative research. You could give it a treasure hunt-type theme and give the voicing a pirate feel. As always, just make sure to keep your audience in mind when using this method. You still want to maintain the integrity of the source content depending on the complexity of the information. If this is for a more serious topic, then a theme may not be warranted, or necessary!
Alrighty, well, I hope this sheds a little light on the scriptwriting process. A great script will save you time and money on the front end by giving you a solid and easy to produce concept. Then, once that vision is captured, you can send it out into the world, to engage clients on a professional and personal level, that truly reflects your message. Do you have any helpful tips to add from your own writing adventures? Feel free to comment and share!
Looking for some project inspiration? Check out these 20 Creative Ideas for Your Next eLearning Project!