How to Write Scripts for Your Podcast

2 women planning podcast script

Writing podcast scripts is one of the most effective ways of ensuring your sound is clear, tight, and respected by your audience.

A script is essentially a roadmap for each of your episodes and it is up to you to decide how much info you want to include from the start to finish. When done properly, a podcast script gives direction, structure, and succinctness to your episodes.

Most podcasters don’t see the need for a podcast script, but without a script, your podcast may lose its casual, free-flowing, and chatty feel.

Having a roadmap can help you feel more relaxed and concentrate on the present instead of being anxious about what you are going to say in the next 30 to 45 minutes. Podcast script can also help you reduce mistakes, thereby cutting down editing time.

Podcast Script Templates

To write a better podcast script, you need to have a template to guide you. A template consists of the basic structure of your podcast episode including sponsor ads, key points, and main topics. Creating a script outline template will help keep you on track and make sure you hit all the key points.

Here is an example of a script template for a podcast. It includes all the essential segments, some of which we have listed above.

  1. Sponsor message
  2. Introduction
  3. Sound effects/musical jingle
  4. Explanation of what is to come
  5. Topic 1
    • Key point
    • Supplementary point
    • Supplementary data
    • Supplementary quote
  6. Segue
  7. Topic 2
    • key point
    • Supplementary point
    • Supplementary data
    • Supplementary quote
  8. Sponsor message
  9. Topic 3
    • Key point
    • Supplementary point
    • Supplementary data
    • Supplementary quote
  10. Segue
  11. Outro
  12. Call to action
  13. Sponsor message
  14. Sound effects/musical jingle

For an interview-based podcast, simply replace “key topic” with a question for your cohost or guest. The most important thing to keep in mind is that you customize this template to suit your podcast; your script doesn’t have to reflect the outline above.

Podcast Script Tips

Writing a podcast script is easy, but the challenge is writing it without killing your creative process. If you are a beginner in the world of podcasting, it becomes even more essential to have a script before you hit that record button.

It will take a lot of practice before you could talk intelligently, clearly, and smoothly, but before then always ensure you prepare some sort of script to guide you during the recording.

Having a podcast script ensures that all your focus will be directed towards the mechanics, such as eradicating filler words, enunciating, as well as controlling volume and tone.

The good news is, as you gain experience talking into a mic and recording, your podcast script will reduce to only a basic outline with simple notes.

Here are some tips that will guide your podcast script creation process.

Ensure it is conversational

One of the main cons of writing a podcast script is the fear of losing that conversational element. Truth be told, if you are not careful, reading a script can result in a flat, monotone delivery that will put off your listeners.

But to alleviate this fear, consider speaking your podcast script like a rehearsal before recording, with a speech-to-text platform to dictate your words. By doing this, you create a natural pattern as well as put your texts on a page so that you can read them while recording.

However, ensure that you edit it out and include all the necessary information.

Blend in some delivery notes

One of the most underrated tricks when preparing a podcast script is using delivery notes within the script to indicate emphasis, pauses, sighs, and laughs among other dramatic effects. You need delivery notes in your scripts because they breathe life into your podcast script, making it feel natural.

But when using delivery notes, make sure you read scripts out loud to make them sound genuine.

Detail the scene

Seeing that podcasting is an audio platform, listeners don’t have visual cues and it is up to you to describe the scene in detail so that they can picture it in their mind. Make your description detailed and vibrant.

As easy as it sounds, this is quite a difficult skill to master because you have to get over the fact that you will be speaking to people who are not in the same room as you, people you can’t see,

Just think of it as talking to someone on a mobile phone.

But don’t be tempted to divulge a detailed description of everything you have to say, just focus on images, concepts, or main topics that require more explanation.

Include some riffing

Preparing a podcast script does not mean you are now bound to it. Going off script is allowed during your recording, particularly if you feel something is valuable or important on the spot – you can always edit it later to remove whatever you don’t like.

But, including some riffing doesn’t mean you should go off on unrelated stuff, because you will be just wasting your time recording something that you will edit out later.

Keep consistent pace

If you want your episodes to turn out great, you have to maintain a reasonable pace – not too slow and not too fast. Avoid long, unexplained pauses as well as moments where you speak too fast. If you can keep everything conversational, you will naturally include transitions and segments to ensure your script is organized and understandable to listeners.

A good trick is to divide your episode into small chapters with their titles or organize it into numbered tips or steps. Additionally, write transition phrases into a script to help shift between segments.

Be yourself

This tip applies pretty much to every situation in life – be yourself and let your own personality showcase. In a place where being natural is everything, there is nothing more natural than being yourself.

Avoid imitating another personality, even if they run a successful podcast. Instead of mimicking them, take some lessons and tips from these pros and express them in your own way.

Use your imagination

When it comes to podcasting, audible communication is important in order to relay your content to the audience. When writing a script for your episode, try to use words to paint mental images to help transmit your message to the listeners more effectively.

As you are preparing your script, whether it is bullet points or full script, focus on the creative use of words to provide more context to your message. Allow your imagination to run freely so that you can find some creative and emotive approach to sharing your message efficiently while giving your listeners a sound adventure every time they listen to your show.

Edit out at the end

The first script you prepare is likely not going to be the one you will use during the actual recording. You may get into writing mode and end up crafting loads of pages filled with clever jokes and some one-liners, but if fail to reach the heart of your podcast, the key metrics will begin to dwindle.

With that in mind, always make sure you edit your script before recording to bring the episode to the right length.

The length of your script should be based on the length of the episode, which should be as long as you want it to be.

Once you have prepared the initial draft of your podcast script, spend a good amount of time editing it to ensure that the episode contains all the important points you want to pass across in your show.

Editing the podcast script also means making sure the episode doesn’t have repetition as well as trimming off parts you may come across too self-focused.

Provide Script Segments

Script segments ensure that you hit all your important points. They remain standard even as your scripts change from one episode to the next. Every time you prepare content, simply refer to your prepared segment and then start preparing your new episode’s script.

Intro

An episode introduction features three important qualities – succinct, welcomes the audience to the show, and a brief description of the podcast. Ideally, you will use a unique script for each podcast episode to consistently welcome the audience to your newest episode.

An example of an episode intro can follow below simple format:

“Welcome to [XYZ Podcast], the show that [what the podcast is about]. I’m your host [your name] and today we are going to talk about [topic of discussion] with a new guest [name of the guest]. We talk about [break down the key topics] in detail and [smaller topics] in bits. At the end of the show we have a surprise guest that will blow your mind, so make sure you stay tuned till the end.”

Guest Intro

If you have guests to your show, the last thing you want is fumbling their name or accomplishment as they are being introduced to the show. To avoid this, make sure you write a short introductory script of the introduction.

By doing this, you will also get a chance to provide additional context around why people should care about the guest’s opinion and advice.

The guest intro can take the following basic format:

“Please allow me to welcome [name of the guest] to the show. He/she/they are here to help us understand [purpose of the guest]. Hello [first name of guest], thanks for being with us today.”

Show Outro

The main function of a show outro is to thank the audience for listening and engaging with you and directing them to any important details about the just concluded episode that emerged during the show. It also offers you a chance to thank your guest for joining you and taking part in the discussion and the value they added to the show.

An outro can take the following setup:

“Join our Facebook page [name of the page] where we discuss in detail about [topic of the episode] the whole of this week joined by various guests. Grab your ticket to our next live event in [location] at our official website [URL] before you miss out.”

Call to Action

If you want your audience to do something for you, the call to action is your chance to do that. Whether it is to subscribe, leave a comment, share the episode, or write a review, CTAs are extremely important if you want to increase podcast downloads and other key metrics such as subscription and listeners.

When crafting a call to action, you want to sound as authentic as possible and focus on how simple it is to complete the action you are requesting from your listeners.

Your call to action priorities will change over time as begin to offer premium subscriptions or sell products. This means that you will have to write several scripts for each need.

Types of Podcast Scripts

We have three podcast formats that require different scripts, including:

Solo podcast scripts

Just because you host the show alone does not mean you should not prepare a script. Craft a simple outline to help you deliver great audio to your listener.

You may run out of things to say for thirty minutes or so if you don’t prepare an outline.

Interview podcast scripts

This is perhaps the most common type of podcast form and requires scripts the most for the host and the guest.

As the main host of the show, you want to know the questions you will ask your guests.

Co-host podcast scripts

If you have a co-host, you want things to be as natural as possible and let the conversation flow freely, thus you can script some parts and leave other sections open for natural conversation.

How to Prepare

Preparation is virtually a critical part of everything, including creating a quality podcast. Crafting a script for your podcast episodes will ensure your final podcast is clear and useful for your listeners. This doesn’t mean you should write pages and pages of content, just a few simple notes to guide you, particularly if you are a podcast newbie.

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