When writing for print material, I usually focus on copy and don’t concern myself with the visual aspect. That’s because I know a skilled graphic designer will take my content and build a visual theme around it. Writing video scripts however, is a different matter. The very power behind video comes from the fact that it IS visual. Words and pictures must work together, which means my job is to write visually.
The generally accepted standard for a corporate video script is a two-column format—visual on the left and text on the right. Ideally, the copy supports and enhances the visual. It shouldn’t describe what the audience can see for itself. In other words, if the visual on the left shows a woman wearing a red dress, the copy need not refer to “the woman in the red dress.” Instead, it should convey information related to what the woman in the red dress is doing, thinking or feeling. This lets you communicate more than one message—an advantage of video that should be exploited.
In fact, when writing video scripts, I usually start by specifically asking clients what visuals they feel are important to include. It might involve advanced technology, a certain process, or state-of-the art facilities—even emotions. Once I’ve assembled a list of visuals, then I begin to write the script.
ABOUT CHIP TUDOR
Chip Tudor is a freelance copywriter, published author, playwright and pastor. He publishes drama at www.chiptudor.com, books on Amazon.com, and articles on his blog.
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