042 Should You Script Your Podcast Episodes

When you get serious about launching your podcast, you might ask whether you should script your episodes. I do not believe you should be scripting your episode if your intention with your podcast is to attract, retain and deepen your relationship with your listeners. So I want to let you into my reasoning behind why I don’t believe that it’s a good idea.

Limitations to scripting your podcast:

Unable to fully connect with the material

As listeners, we can tell when someone is reading from a script. We can hear it in their voice, their intonation, removing us, as the listener, from having a connection. We know that they’re not fully present. This is different to the medium of audiobooks, whereby we know and understand that someone is reading word for word what is in front of them. Your podcast is not an audio book. It does not have to be word perfect.

Struggle to build a rapport

Podcasting is a great opportunity to build a rapport and sense of belonging and connection between yourself and your listener. Building high value relationships requires vulnerability. Reading from a script is not allowing ourselves to be vulnerable. With podcasts, we’re listening because we’re drawn into the concept of this being an intimate conversation and conversations and not scripted!

How to overcome fear in front of a microphone:

Map out three to eight topics

I find that quite a few early stage entrepreneurs, less confident in their ability to deliver and perhaps nervous about their expertise, tend to script their podcasts as compensation for their nervousness around the microphone. To combat this, I advise all of our clients rather than script their podcast, is to be really clear on the intention of each episode. Be clear on the podcast title, then bullet point out three to eight topics that you’re going to cover within that episode. Having that structure allows the natural impetus and inspiration that can come through when you’re delivering your content. This allows you to play, pivot and go in a slightly different direction. You know that you’re going to come back to the next topic on the list. So this actually gives you freedom to play, meaning that whatever you’re talking about, you’re still connected to it. It’s still real and authentic.

Think of one story for each episode

I would advise that you also think about at least one story that you’re going to bring to the table in your show. I don’t mean a story for every single one of those three to eight points but something that makes this episode specific to you. We as human beings are very much drawn to story. It’s how we learn, recall information and our subconscious actually processes a lot of information that is sent to us. So if you think about having at least one story that sits alongside the three to eight topics that you’re going to cover, you will share tremendous value. This will retract, retain your listeners much more and make it a much more powerful episode.

Trust yourself

Know that you are enough. Trust your expertise, even if you aren’t yet the best in the business and at the start of the journey. Talking openly is often the way to combat that feeling of not being the expert and the awkwardness that could come with that. Allow yourself to share, be real and be honest as ultimately that is what makes a podcast really valuable for your listener. We’re trying to create valuable content where people feel like they know us a little bit more. Those stumbles, pauses, hesitations, yes, you can edit lots of that out, but they show you are human. We all make mistakes.

Your podcast can become a very powerful front end of your business. After all, business is personal and we choose to spend money with people that we know, like and trust. What we don’t trust is someone who doesn’t trust their own words, their own knowledge and ability. Allow yourself to share and be real and honest, because that is what makes a podcast valuable for your listener.

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