Writing For Radio

Radio Commercials Script

During this workshop, you will write 2 different forms of radio. Here's some pointers on writing a radio commercial script

  • Timing

    • Radio Commercial scripts are usually a certain length e.g. 10, 20 or 30 seconds
    • An average script will usually have approximately 3 words per second
    • Best way to time a script is to read it aloud and time it with a stopwatch
    • If there is a character in your script (Santa Claus for example) they may require more time and might only be 1 or 2 words per second
  • Writing Style

    • Listen to the way people speak if you want your voiceover to sound real or natural
    • Don’t be afraid to use contractions
    • Listen to real conversation and take notes about how people speak
    • Write as if you’re talking to one person
    • In a radio ad, you only have one chance unlike other media – so it's important to be simple and concise

When writing for radio, it's great to get inspiration from other great work. Have a listen to the below radio commercials before embarking on your first scripting exercise.

  • Radio Commercial Practical Exercise

Download this script and have a listen to the below commercial featuring Mario Rosenstock of Gift Grub fame.

Now have a listen to the below version. We've removed a section of the voiceover. We'd like you to replace the missing section with your own scripted voiceover. You'll need to script and rehearse it before you record to make sure that it fits into the available time. You can write your own version using this word document

Live Link Script

A live link is how to refer to anything

Some djs or presenters will deliver these unscripted but it's a good idea to have at least a loose script when you're starting out. We've provided a piece of audio similar to what you'd hear on a radio station with an intro and an instrumental section where you'll add your voiceover. Have a listen to it below.

First, think of a topic  you'd like to cover on your update. The goal of this script is to sound natural and conversational. Instead of scripting out every word, just note down 2 or 3 bullet points on the key things you'd like to discuss in your presenter link. Once recorded, you'll be editing your voice and the above audio to create a complete radio package.


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