There are many steps to creating a YouTube video, from brainstorming ideas and setting up your recording and lighting equipment to shooting and editing your project.
We are constantly trying to find ways to keep our audience watching longer but we can never seem to figure that out, right?
That's where youtube video scripts come into play.
TL;DR: Writing Your Powerful YouTube Script
- Know Your Audience: Understand what your target audience enjoys and tailor your script accordingly.
- Choose the Right Video Format: Select a format that best suits your content and audience.
- Outline Your Video Structure: Plan the framework of your video to ensure a smooth flow of content.
- Incorporate The Bento Box Method: Use a powerful hook, include the meat of the content afterward, and end with a CTA.
- Start Writing Your Script: Begin the writing process, focusing on engaging and relevant content.
- Revise and Refine Your Script: Edit your script for clarity, engagement, and flow.
- Create A YouTube Script Template: Create a template to add to your SOP.
- Optimize for SEO: Ensure your script includes SEO elements to improve visibility on YouTube
Video scripting is one fundamental step many YouTube content creators don’t seem to pay enough attention to, especially at the beginning of their journey.
You can even make money with YouTube by helping creators with scriptwriting.
Video scripting is the process of laying down the blueprint and foundation of the project you’re working on. It’s a process that ensures a focused, well-structured, and engaging final video.
If you’re new to YouTubing and have difficulty scripting your content, you’ve come to the right place. Read on to learn how to write a YouTube script one step at a time.
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I've been making money online and I've realized that having some kind of YouTube video script template for your videos are vital for growth.
Creating YouTube videos that your audience will actually watch to the end is one of the best feelings and can convince YouTube to push your video to the homepage.
Why You Need to Script Your YouTube Videos
Before we talk about how you can write effective YouTube video scripts, we need to emphasize the importance of writing video scripts and how a script can make or break your entire video creation process.
Learning how to write the best story ideas and keep people engaged throughout the entire video is important.
Youtube's algorithm is so fine-tuned that it is able to detect which videos are engaging and reward them by pushing viewers through the recommended feed.
Organizes Your Ideas and Thoughts
As a video content creator on YouTube, you probably have countless ideas and thoughts you want to convey to your audience through your videos. This can be difficult to do if you don’t have a clear outline.
You’re organizing your ideas and thoughts into a well-structured outline by scripting your projects. This, in turn, reduces the amount of time and energy wasted on problems that arise due to poor organization.
You can even use an AI chatbot to help you structure your scripts and topic ideas for YouTube.
Keeps Your Team on the Same Page
If an entire production team is behind your YouTube channel, writing crystal-clear video scripts that detail everything from scene description to camera cues becomes even more paramount.
Keeping an entire team on the same wavelength is hard without a clear vision of how the project should look, sound, and feel.
So use a Google Doc or an editor that allows team collaboration. This makes video scripting essential for streamlining your video creation process.
Reduces Retakes and Editing Time
Scripting your videos prevents you from going off-topic on long, unnecessary rants that you’ll probably have to cut out during editing.
If you do take way to much time, you can use an AI video editor to help you remove cuts and pauses.
What’s more, when you have a solid video script, you already know what you need to say and how to say it. This reduces retakes significantly.
Keeps Your Brand Voice Consistent
Scripting your videos plays a major role in building your brand. When you have a well-defined template for your scripts, you’re creating consistency in all your videos despite the difference in content.
When you’re consistent with your video scripts, your audience will know what to expect when you release a new video. This is key when it comes to building a brand.
Speaking of templates, Backlinko has an excellent free video script template that you ought to check out.
Makes Your Videos More Engaging
When you’re writing a video script, you’re essentially planning and crafting the story and direction of that video. So, the better you get at scripting, the better your storytelling will be and you can hook viewers from the start.
As a result, the overall quality of your YouTube videos will increase, and they’ll be more engaging and entertaining. This catalyzes earning more views, likes, subscriptions, and revenue.
How to Write a YouTube Script
Now that you know the importance of scripting your videos, it’s time to discuss how it’s done. Here are the steps you need to follow to write an engaging YouTube video script:
1. Know What Your Target Audience Likes
Before putting pen to paper, it’s important to identify your target market and get to know their interests. This will help you determine the style, tone, and direction of the videos you’re trying to make.
Videos for gaming enthusiasts will have a different style, tone, and direction than the ones geared toward single moms or dads seeking parenting advice.
To identify your intended audience, you need to consider the following factors:
- Age group
Once you’ve identified your target audience, you need to get to know what they like and dislike. You also need to research their challenges and desires so that you can deliver the type of video content they’re looking for.
You can also ask a tool like ChatGPT to help you craft the perfect tone of voice and style for your audience. Here's an example of what I would prompt the AI tool with:
Knowing your target audience’s pain points and desires will help you develop video ideas. Not all ideas are worthwhile, though. So, how do you validate your ideas?
The answer is keyword research and the best tools for that would be VidIQ or Tubebuddy.
Perform Keyword Research
Keyword research is the process of identifying the search terms that your potential viewers is using. This process helps gauge your audience’s interest level in a given idea.
There are quite a few ways to perform keyword research. We recommend starting with Google Trends, which is a platform that helps users identify trends on most major search engines, as well as YouTube.
Google Trends is super easy to use. All you have to do is type in a keyword or search term and click “Explore.” Then, filter the results using the “YouTube Search” option.
You’ll then see a graphical representation of the level of interest surrounding the search term you entered over a period of time. If the interest is high (has a score of 50 to 100), then it’s a search term worth exploring.
Once you’ve validated your idea via Google Trends, it’s time to gather more specific keywords. To do so, type in your main keyword or search term into YouTube’s search bar and check the results that pop up.
The queries that YouTube auto-suggests are the ones users actively search for. With that in mind, writing your YouTube video scripts based on those queries is a good idea.
Pro Tip: Add an asterisk (*) next to your main keyword or search phrase in YouTube’s search bar to see different variations of your keyword.
You can also use tools like Ahrefs to research keywords and validate your ideas based on search volume. Other keyword research tools that you can use for YouTube include TubeBuddy, vidIQ, and MorningFame.
ViqIQ is a youtube SEO tool that gives you access to advanced analytics. This way, we can see how many views our videos have gotten and what kind of audience they attract. With these insights, it'll be more accessible than ever for us to create high-quality content!
Establish Your Video’s Goal
Now that you’ve validated your ideas and collected some relevant keywords to work with, you need to figure out the goal of the project you’re working on. Why are you making this video?
Are you trying to educate your target audience about a certain topic? Are you introducing a product or service? Maybe you’re just vlogging or creating a video purely for entertainment!
Establishing a goal for your YouTube video is especially important if you’re working with a production team. A simple video idea can quickly become a convoluted mess if there isn’t a clear goal in sight.
2. Choose the Right Video Format
Once you’ve established a clear goal for the video you’re trying to make, it’s time to determine which format is best for achieving that goal and appealing to your target audience.
Here are the most common:
- An explainer video
- Talking headshot content
- A vlog
- Product review
If you want to inform your target audience about a specific topic, educational formats like the ones used in explainers and how-to videos will work best for you.
If your niche is more entertainment-driven, you can opt for plenty of formats, from unboxing and challenge videos to ask-me-anything (AMA) and reaction videos.
Consider producing a documentary-style video if you want to combine education and entertainment. Copywriting, storytelling, and heavy research are especially important for this type of video.
Vlogging is another format you can use to educate, entertain, or both! It’s not as reliant on script writing as most other formats, but it can still use a short script to prevent unnecessary rants.
The great thing about vlogging is that it doesn’t require much. All you need to create an entertaining vlog is an exciting story or topic, a recording device, and a good setting for your video.
The video format you choose will play a big role in determining the tone and style of your videos, which, in turn, will influence your scriptwriting process.
For instance, an entertainment video can benefit from a humorous tone. An educational video can also benefit from some humor and vibrancy in the script, but being informative must remain the priority.
3. Outline Your Video Structure
Creating an outline for your video script before you start writing it is crucial. An outline will help you separate different parts of your video script and arrange your ideas and thoughts in a way that flows nicely.
Like a blog post outline, YouTube scripts can be written out in a structure with an introduction, body, and conclusion. Try to keep your script organized while ensuring it follows a logical flow.
In most cases, a good YouTube video script outline has the following:
Tips from the YouTube Creator Playbook indicate that the first 15 seconds of a video can determine whether or not the viewer will continue to watch the video.
This is why you need to start your video outline with a hook that will entice the viewer to continue watching. So, how do you start your video with an engaging hook?
The best video hooks often highlight what the video is all about and what the viewer can gain by watching it. The hook should be as clear and easy to understand as possible.
Your hook can be an interesting piece of dialogue, stunning visuals, or something else altogether. Just ensure that it’s engaging enough to grab the viewer’s attention.
The introduction is where you provide your viewers with some context about the content of the video. You can also use it to introduce yourself and your brand.
Introductions are all about setting expectations. So, be sure to use your video introduction to tell your audience essential details like your video’s goal and structure and the questions you intend to answer.
Setting expectations in the introduction is especially important if you’re making a long video with several chapters. This is because it helps viewers pinpoint the parts that are most relevant to them.
Think about it; if you’re watching a review video about a product you’re familiar with but don’t know how it works, you’ll probably skip the ‘Overview’ chapter and jump into the ‘How It Works’ chapter.
The length of the introduction can vary based on the style of video you’re making. For instance, a reaction video will likely have a shorter introduction or backstory than a documentary-style video.
The body is essentially the meat and potatoes of your video script. It’s the section that contains most, if not all, of the information the viewer is looking for. It’s also the longest section in the script.
This section should be written in the form of key points and examples. Avoid being too elaborate or explanative when writing this section so that you don’t end up reading off of it, which won’t look good to your audience.
In addition to listing your main points, feel free to list a few side points that you can use to interrupt any pattern that you or your audience may find repetitive.
Examples of side points that you can introduce include:
- Opposing points of view
- Controversial ideas or beliefs
- Common mistakes
- Common challenges
Breaking repetitive patterns is something we’d recommend because it helps keep the viewers on their feet. It’s one of the best ways to keep your audience engaged.
Conclusion of Your Video
The conclusion section is the one where you summarize the entire video script in the form of key points. It’s also the part where you can include a call to action (CTA).
A CTA is an action you’d like your audience to do after watching your video. This can be anything from liking and subscribing to your newsletter to checking out a product or service.
Note that CTAs can be included in any part of your script, not just the conclusion. You can include a call to action in the body or even the introduction of your video if you want.
4. Start Writing Your YouTube Video Script
Now that you’ve created the perfect outline, it’s time to start writing your YouTube video script. Here are a few scriptwriting tips:
When writing a YouTube script, you should avoid big words and overly complicated phrasing. You want to keep your script conversational, but also introduce pattern interrupts. The more conversational your writing is, the more relatable and easier to comprehend it will be.
To be conversational with your writing, you should avoid the passive voice, use day-to-day words and phrases, tell a story with your writing, and ask relevant questions.
Use Short Sentences and Paragraphs
In line with the previous tip, one of the best ways to maintain a conversational tone in your video script is to write short sentences and paragraphs.
The longer your sentences and paragraphs are, the harder they’ll be to follow and the more convoluted the ideas will come across.
Incorporate Storytelling Techniques
One of the oldest yet most effective storytelling techniques is the three-act formula. The three acts are the setup (first act), conflict (second act), and resolution (third act).
Here’s a brief breakdown of the purpose of each act:
- Setup (Act One) – This act is for exposition. It’s where you introduce a problem that your target audience is facing.
- Conflict (Act Two) – This act is for escalation. It’s where you discuss the pain point associated with the problem.
- Resolution (Act Three) – This act is for resolution. It’s where you present a solution to the problem at hand.
Emphasize Key Points
If you’re tackling a broad topic, make sure to emphasize key points using simple italics, underlining, and bolding. This will help you stay focused on what’s most important.
Use AI Writing Software
If you’re not much of a writer or your schedule is too hectic to sit down and write a detailed video script, you can use AI writing software such as ChatGPT, Jasper.ai, and Rytr.
I use Jasper AI to write all my blog articles and social media content. This AI writing tool lets you create a blog post in seconds with just the push of one button!
Such tools can help boost your productivity, but they’re not perfect. You’ll need to revise and edit their writing to ensure it hits the mark.
5. Revise and Refine Your Video Script
Once you’ve done writing your script, you’ll need to revise and edit it to ensure good flow and digestibility.
To note: The editing process is just as important and will help you film high-quality content for your audience.
One of the best ways to refine your video script is to read it aloud. Doing so makes it easy to detect problems with flow, communication, awkward phrasing, typos, etc.
You can then fix any errors using an AI text generator which can also help with talking points.
Reading your writing out loud also lets you explore your audience’s perspective. It will help you focus on big-picture elements like tone and narrative.
Further, reading your writing out loud forces you to be more intentional with your choice of words. It helps you slow down and pay attention to each word, ensuring it serves a purpose.
6. Optimize Your Video Script for SEO
Yes, YouTube SEO is a thing, and it’s important for your video marketing strategy. That doesn't mean you should include unnecessary words in your video, and you need to make sure that it is relevant to your video topic.
There are several ways to optimize your YouTube video script for SEO. First, you must naturally insert the main keyword in your video a few times. It also helps to insert variations of the main keyword.
You can also use VidIQ or Tubebuddy to help you with a few ideas and add keywords for your engaging videos.
Further, you must consider what your target audience might search for when looking for similar video content. Then, incorporate those keywords in your script.
Another thing that you can do to boost your SEO is to use a mix of long-tail and short-tail keywords. Also, ensure you scatter your keywords throughout the entire script rather than focusing them in a single section.
Other YouTube SEO tips:
- Including accurate closed captions
- Writing a keyword-optimized video title, description, and tags
- Saying your target keyword a few times in the video
- Using a compelling thumbnail
- Naming the video file using the target keyword
- Adding a transcript to your video description
- Tagging your video with other relevant keywords
- Adding hashtags to increase reach
- Adding cards and end screens to boost viewership
7. Create A YouTube Script Template
Now that you have created your first script, you can customize this for every use. Creating a template will simplify the video production process, and you even have ChatGPT to help you.
There you have it! Now you know how to write a YouTube video script that will engage your target viewers, improve the overall quality of your videos, and help your YouTube channel get more views and subscriptions.
You can use scripts to capture your viewers' attention and say the proper callouts for each video you produce.
I'd also recommend using a Youtube video idea generator to craft the perfect topic for your outline.
The process detailed in this article can be a little time-consuming initially, but it’s guaranteed to take your videos to the next level. And the more you keep at it, the less time-consuming it will be.
FAQs for YouTube Scriptwriters
Should I Write a Script for My YouTube Videos?
Yes, you should write a script for your videos. It will help organize your ideas and thoughts and improve the overall quality of your video.
Plus, writing a script for your videos helps reduce retakes and editing time. It can also help you with brand building and keeping your brand voice consistent.
Don't forget that scripting is just a part of the writing process for each video, and it will make the process run smoothly.
What Is a YouTube Script?
A YouTube script is the blueprint of the video you’re working on. It outlines all of the important aspects of your video production, including dialogue, scene description, special effects, images, and so forth.
How Long Should a Script Be for a YouTube Video?
You should make your YouTube video scripts as concise and easy to follow as possible. While a video script might be long, you want to keep your sentences short.