How to build a profitable podcast.
A potential listener will stay glued to a show if it takes them on a journey.
As a podcaster, you are responsible for defining the journey that each episode takes.
The most effective way of getting this right is through an effective podcast script. It doesn't have to be word for word... just some bullet points will help you guide your thoughts through the episode journey... ideally bringing the listener along with you.
An excellent way to ensure your podcast show's success is to create a podcast script.
Although, it might seem like creating a podcast script might suppress creative success, making your episode sound inauthentic: just remember, creativity needs structure to flourish...
Popular podcasts are successful because of reasonable structure, excellent scriptwriting, and proper planning. Before I explain how to write a podcast script, we should talk about why it is essential and how it can ensure your podcast's success.
Every podcast script should be unique; it depends on the host, and the type of show you run. It is crucial to prepare segmented topics ahead of time because it will help you hit every point you are trying to make on each episode.
However, there are options for figuring out which style you want your podcast script; there are no rights or wrongs. You have to know which works for you.
Bullet points: The fastest type of podcast script to create. You need to share brief details fo each topic you wish to cover. Ideally, this style provides some form of structure for your episode... though you may love spontaneity, w still don't want you to ramble aimlessly. We don't want you to lose your listeners on your journey.
Fully scripted: A fully scripted podcast will help you plan everything you need to say before you hit the record button. You have everything well done; you know what you will say. Usually, it is a common starting point for enthusiastic podcasters.
It helps you cover everything you need, read through, and be sure that you will get your facts straight and not miss anything. This method is ideal for people who are not very confident when speaking.
Talking points: A script that comprises talking points is the most flexible style to choose from. The only thing you need is a topic. The conversation will dictate what the whole content of the rest of the episode will be.
Keep in mind that there is no right or wrong for styling your podcast script. Any podcast episode's success depends on fifty percent of the podcast script and fifty percent on the delivery.
1. Use A Conversational Tone
One of the top challenges faced when writing a podcast script is maintaining a conversational tone. In some cases, podcasters to read straight from the script... this is not desirable. It sounds like you're reading the news, badly.
Keep your words as simple as possible; dumb your sentences down, as if you wre talking to someone in real life.
A good number of podcasters prepare their script by using speech-to-text apps. It helps them come up with a script that sounds like how they speak to someone. Adopting this method will help you create a proper and natural flow.
If you use the speech-to-text style, you will have to edit the script and refine the rough parts. You can find this feature on Google Docs.
2. Insert Delivery Notes
You want to sound as natural and relaxed as possible when podcasting... delivery notes can help with this.
Delivery notes are jottings and signs within the podcast script that signifies laugh, pauses, sighs, emphasis, and every other type of dramatic effect. These elements give your podcast script life and help the flow feel natural.
Practice your podcast script by reading them aloud and acting out the delivery notes. You could do this for a friend or just in front of the mirror ;)
3. Imagine A Friendly Phone Conversation
As easy as this might sound, it isn't easy to execute. As a newbie podcaster, you may find it hard to speak to people without seeing them directly. What you have to do is to imagine that you are having a phone conversation with a friend.
Do you have to give a detailed description of every sentence? No.
However, you have to note that your job is to be readily prepared to paint an accurate picture of all concepts, topics, or images that require a more in-depth description for your listeners. They are blind to the notion of what you are trying to say; your podcast script must give them the vision.
4. Keep It Succinct And Leave Room For Flexibility
A succinctly written script leaves room for some improvisation during recording. There is room to expand the script on the spot and be flexible. If you are reading a script directly, you will lose your natural flow; this is why you should avoid writing out each line you want to say on the show. Only include the key points.
The flexibility that comes with keeping your script succinct is enjoyable. When speaking, you can choose to use different words to describe various situations.
This also goes for the topics you will discuss, and the stories you will tell. By leaving space for new thoughts on the show, you will make your show exciting and creative. No one wants to listen to a robotic show, and many newbie podcasters make this mistake.
Newbie podcasters want to cover every aspect, and in the process, they forget to leave room for fresh thoughts that might come up during the process of recording... remember, the journey could take a different direction when recording.
5. Own Your Script
Every podcast script is different. As much as there are podcast script templates to follow, your podcast script has to be uniquely yours. Some podcasters love to include more details in their script while others prefer bullet points. You have to use the method that works for you.
If you have unique signs and marks that help you remember the next line of action, you should use them in your script.
However, you must also remember that each segment's scripting method differs. While some parts need a lot of scripting, some don't. An example is your sponsor message – you might want to write this in your script word for word to ensure you don't miss anything.
Notwithstanding your preference for your podcast script's choice, you should never forget the podcast episode theme and overall goal to keep you always on track.
To save time, we recommend forming a podcast script template. This will cut down the time it takes to produce the script for all future episodes. You can paste this into your preparation document for each episode and then update as per that episodes journey.
Here is an example podcast script template for a solo podcast, though it can easily be adapted to include a guest...
Topic 1: Title
Segue (could be a phrase, sound effect, effect, or music clip)
Topic 2: Title
Recap of the core message
Planning is essential when it comes to podcasting. Writing a podcast script is a sure fire way to ensure you are adequately prepared.
Although it doesn't have to be a word for word, you want to have a script as a guide to help you stay on track and keep you focused while also giving you a chance to be creative, and flexible.
Own your script, write as you deem fit, and take your listeners on the journey with you through your episodes...