Part of a Voice123 scriptwriting series written and compiled to provide tips, ideas, and examples
Not sure how to start writing promotional scripts? Then let’s help you get started!
Most promotional scripts are between 30 and 60 seconds long. Although they can be longer, they’re likely to venture into the territory of explainer rather than promo because they have to include more content to meet the extended duration requirement.
While promo scripts and commercial scripts are similar, there are also marked differences. Commercials/advertisements tend to follow the ‘state it; explain it; repeat it’ structure. Furthermore, they’re usually focused on making a sale of some kind.
Promotional scripts don’t have to make a sale — although a call to action is required (more on that later). In terms of tone and style, promotional scripts are generally less hyped than commercial scripts.
In fact, the biggest issue many writers have when putting a promotional script together is how to make the content engaging. Persuasive elements are often missing.
Nevertheless, by understanding that the core of what you’re doing remains storytelling, a less than stellar topic need not present you with an insurmountable challenge. Great storytelling always gets attention.
For promotional scripts, you need to:
- Know your audience. You’d approach children quite differently than you would a senior audience, so your writing style and tone of voice need to adapt accordingly. While exclamation-fuelled enthusiasm might work for youngsters, you’d have to approach older folk more gently and with due consideration.
- Know your purpose and your platform. What are you promoting? A business? A product? A service? An event? A course? The approach to each of these would be different.
- Emphasize entertainment rather than mere facts. We’re in the age of instant gratification. Just like it’s good to know your audience, it’s good to know what your audience does for fun, what makes them laugh, or what matters to them so you can adjust your writing to accommodate these. By tickling their fancy with your script, they’re likely to keep reading, listening, and watching. They’ll also remember what you’re promoting.
- Give your omniscient narrator a personality. If you write the script as someone who is just spewing out fact after fact, you’ll drench your script in the most dreadful dreariness. Don’t do it. Rather try imagining yourself as a member of your target audience and you’re listening to someone you really trust. Just ensure you don’t end up coming across as patronizing. If your audience reckons you’re an imposter who’s trying too hard, you’ll be dead in the water faster than you can blink. Keep your tone conversational, relatable, and real.
- Include a call-to-action. Notwithstanding your purpose, you’ll want your audience to perform some kind of action at the end — whether it’s a download, a subscription, a purchase, etc. Offer them something useful or meaningful as a takeaway. And don’t forget to add contact details, etc. An audience will quickly lose interest if they have to search for stuff.
Promo script examples:
Client: National Ballet Company
Title: Romeo & Juliet
Target audience: Adult
Actor Gender/Age: Any/adult
Reading pace: Normal
Description: Omniscient narrator, National Ballet Company promo
Direction notes: 40+. Warm and inviting tone. Video sequences of the performance will be shown. You’re captivated by what you’re seeing and hearing. You want to share your awe and enthusiasm with your viewer.
(Musical intro 5 sec)
Maybe you know it. Maybe you’ve seen it.
But you’ve never witnessed it like this.
Come and be mesmerized by a whole new take on Sergei Prokofiev’s musical interpretation of the greatest love story ever told:
Romeo and Juliet.
Masterfully played by the National Youth Orchestra, brilliantly choreographed by the renowned Judith MacNamara, and stunningly performed by the National Ballet Company.
Sergei Prokofiev’s Romeo and Juliet at the Artscape until February 28.
Tickets available at the door or through Computicket.com.
Book now to avoid disappointment.
Client: The Willows Learning Center
Title: Learning Program
Target audience: Moms and dads 35+
Actor Gender/Age: Female/adult
Duration: 60 sec
Reading pace: Normal
Description: Promo for the launch of a new learning program
Direction notes: 30+. Think of a thirty-something mom talking to a friend who’s also one. Conversational, real. Mustn’t sound ‘read’. Upbeat, but not salesy.
Is your child struggling to read, or finding simple arithmetic confusing? The Willows Learning Center has a new learning program that can help!
Our qualified teachers know just how to untangle the complexities of learning for young minds.
We’ll get your child happily reading and making sums in no time!
Choose sessions that suite you — after school, on weekday evenings, or even Saturday mornings.
Come talk to us. For an appointment, call the Willows Learning Center. We’re right next to Clearwater Mall. For the future of you child, it’s the best investment you can make. Call us today on 887-8908.
And finally, we wish you every success with your promo scriptwriting!