The studio setup includes a teleprompter in front of the camera allowing you to read your script whilst maintaining eye contact with the lens. Scripts are displayed on the teleprompter, scrolling as you read to keep your eye-line at the centre of the screen. Presenters who choose to use scripts may be experienced, have a need for absolute accuracy or need to create videos if specific lengths.

Writing a script to be read out loud requires careful consideration to ensure that it is easy to read and well received by the listener. A poor script may cause presenters to become frustrated and your studio session could therefore be less productive.  Although you are more than welcome to revise and improve your scripts on the day, we would highly recommend doing this before the session to make sure you gain the most from your time in the studio.

Download a sample script/template in Microsoft Word format

Eight tips for preparing your scripts

1. Practise reading the script out loud and improving it

To be familiar with the script and to help iron out any issues we recommend that each script is read out at least ten times. The more you know your script, the more natural it looks and the better your delivery.

The number one comment made by everyone using the studio for the first time is that they wish they had rehearsed and improved the script more!

Recording your practises on a mobile phone can be useful and if you don’t mind watching yourself back, you will be full of great advice for yourself – just be kind! For the best delivery:

  1. Read each script out loud
  2. Adjust and improve each script
  3. Practise again until you are only prompted by the script (hence the name teleprompter!)

2. Use language that is familiar to the presenter

If someone else has written a script for you it has to be transposed to suit the way you naturally speak. Again this is better done in advance of your session and all amendments need to be spoken out loud and rehearsed multiple times. The ideal script should feel natural to say out loud and use words you are very comfortable with. Over intellectualised scripts will most likely sound awkward as they can be tricky to deliver. Another tip is to avoid including things like ‘e.g.’, ‘i.e.’ and ‘etc’ as these are more commonly written rather than spoken out loud.

3. Avoid using bulleted/numbered points or lists

Avoid using bulleted/numbered points or lists as these simply do not work when spoken out loud. If your source material features lists or bullet points we suggest instead constructing sentences to incorporate them. As mentioned above please make sure you rehearse these out loud to check that they make sense and are easy to say.

4. Use punctuation to aid delivery

As your scripts are usually only for you to use on the teleprompter, you can bend punctuation rules in your favour. Commas can be used to help with delivery by inserting one wherever you need to breathe. It is a good idea to go back and add them when you rehearse, just add one every place you naturally take a breath. Normally after a full stop you would start a new line, this helps your brain read ahead and get the rhythm of each sentence correct. Paragraph breaks are not used as these can create breaks of up to ten seconds when a script is scrolling at normal reading speed.

5. Don’t over format your scripts

The teleprompter displays text in a very basic way to make it easier for you to read. By default the font Arial is used in white on a black background with all other formatting disabled. We recommend that even basic formatting such as bold, italic and underline is not used unless it is really necessary as it can be off putting for the presenter.

6. Avoid using capital letters within a sentence

To avoid confusion and to keep your script easy to read, we recommend not capitalising words inside of a sentence (such as Dr, Spain, McDonald etc) as this can confuse the presenter who might think it is the start of a new sentence. If you need to include acronyms, capitals can be used separated by hyphens, for example ‘I-O-D’ to avoid it accidentally being read out as a phonetic word.

7. Keep your script short

As a rough guide 120 to 180 words (depending on delivery speed) = 1 minute of video. You can check your script length using this online tool (choose the second option ‘paste in your script’).  The EasyStudio service normally records videos in one take (although you can have as many goes as you need to perfect your delivery), this means that if you have a long script and you make a mistake then you will need to re-record the whole video again from the beginning. On the plus side, each version that you record is usually is better than the last as you perfect your delivery.

It is important to also remember that viewers generally favour concise content, and will be happy to watch several videos in sequence if your topic requires more time to deliver. Research shows that a 1-2 minute video can retain more viewers than a 5-10 minute video. We recommend dividing your content up into chapters or simply part 1/2/3 etc as required.

8. Add slide change markers for use with PowerPoint presentations

Add slide change markers for use with PowerPoint presentations – if you wish to include a PowerPoint presentation in your video then you will need to add markers in your script to show when to advance the slides. This can be added by including a ‘[CLICK]’ at the point where you will need to click the next slide button on the remote control. It is advised that you carefully test this to ensure that the right slides are shown at the right point in your script. Slides are shown on a big screen next to the teleprompter providing positive feedback that each slide change has happened.

Video demonstrations

Frequently Asked Questions about preparing scripts

Rather than start again can’t you edit my recordings together?

This is a common question that has two answers! If you are wanting to keep within the costs of your chosen package then you will need to record your videos in one take. Or if you are happy to pay for some additional editing time then we can potentially join different videos together as required. It is important to note that to avoid a ‘jump cut’, the edit will need to be hidden in some way (for example using a full screen slide) or else the production quality of your video may be compromised.

Does reading a script make me sound wooden?

If you don’t practise then you are very likely to sound like you are reading from a script! However through practise and familiarity, you will be able to deliver in a far more natural style. One of the biggest causes of ‘wooden’ delivery is due to the script itself being too formal, unemotional and generally different from the way you would normally speak.

A good way to overcome this is to initially start with ad-libing your presentation and recording it using this website. Then edit your transcribed script (carefully considering the overall length) until it is exactly right for you.

Is it noticeable that a script is being used?

Viewers may be able to tell that you are reading from a script (lighter eye colours tend to make this more obvious), however this is rarely a problem. The biggest giveaway is more likely to be if the reading of the script is not properly rehearsed leading to a less natural delivery style.

Can I memorise my script instead of using the teleprompter?

If you are one of the very lucky people who can do this, then this may be the best choice for you. However if you are not extremely confident in this ability, then you are likely to become frustrated and unproductive attempting what is generally a very difficult thing to do. This is something we see people attempt to do a lot – and unfortunately the success rate is quite low. Remember that you  would need to remember the whole script and present it in one go.

Can I deviate from the script?

Yes you can ad-lib parts as you wish, although this often can lead to issues and it is usually better to amend the script or instead choose to ad-lib altogether if this is your preferred style.

Will l need glasses or contact lenses to read from the teleprompter?

The text on the teleprompter is approximately 1cm high and is 2.5m away from the presenters location. If you need glasses or contact lenses in this situation and you have a choice, contact lenses may be the better option (unless you opted for the anti-reflection coating on your glasses). The use of glasses is perfectly acceptable in the studio but may need some lighting adjustments to avoid reflections.

Will I need to speak at a constant speed?

Our teleprompter set-up is controlled by following your reading speed. Simply read the script at your normal speed and our operator will adjust as needed. You can pause or speed up as you wish without worrying about the script going out of sync.

Can you check my script for me?

We are very happy to read through your script on the day and make suggestions that might help with the delivery. We are able to also offer this as a paid service in advance if you require it.

Can you write my script for me?

Yes of course. We have a number of excellent script writers who can assist with single or batch script production. It might be worth having a go at writing your own script to see how you get on (after all you are likely to be both familiar with your topics and used to talking about them), if you are not happy with what you produced it is likely to be more cost effective to have them ‘polished’ rather than written from scratch.

Can I script some videos and ad-lib others?

Yes this is possible and it is quick to switch between these modes in our studio set-up.