• David Humphreys

The art of scripting

Here are 10 tips for writing an animation script


1. Keep it short

How short? Well consider your audience.

If they are captive and have to watch it as part of training/ presentation, then you can go a little longer.

If they are just popping onto your site, or watching it on social media, then go for 90 secs.


2. Read your script aloud

Don't just race through it, read at the tone you’d like the voiceover to do it. The more technical the script, the slower your pace should be to allow your audience to absorb the information. Timing yourself with the stopwatch on your phone is good, or you can test the length of your script here. Reading it aloud will uncover any tongue twisters - if it doesn’t sound right to speak it certainly won’t sound nice to hear.


3. Focus on your message

Write out what your message is first and go from there. Get to the crux of the matter in the first 30 seconds.


4. Be concise

With every line be very strict on removing repetition and keep asking yourself “who cares?” as you analyse each line. Don’t waffle, cut anything out that doesn’t need to be there.


5. Find the right tone

Use short simple sentences and remember that speech is more colloquial than text. The general tone should be simple and conversational, but remember that it must reflect your brand voice. As our name suggests we love to inject humour in, but never shoe horn in jokes or puns to something that’s serious. It's more effective to rely on your visuals for humour and a good voiceover artist will find the right, upbeat cadence that keep things light.


6. Think about narrative

The usual flow is Problem > Solution > Explanation/detail > Call to action.

Don’t spend too much time on the problem though. Your script should be positive and focus on your product.


7. Don't underestimate the script

It’s vital, it's the backbone on which the whole film rests. If you're concerned get Studio Giggle to write it for you, we've written hundreds and all we need is some reference materials to get us going.


8. Get feedback

A fresh pair of ears could be just what you need. Read your script to someone and they can act as your audience. Anticipate your viewers questions, and answer them in the script.


9. Make the most of your visuals

You have animation to work with, our brains process videos 60,000 times faster than text so make the most of this, particularly with graphs and figures where charts are much nicer to look at.


10. Keep it simple

Avoid jargon and unnecessarily complex words. This is particularly important with tricky subjects like finance and law. There is a handy resource here, for choosing simpler words: https://www.plainenglish.co.uk/the-a-z-of-alternative-words.html