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Writing for listening - 5 tips for the perfect narration

The decision is made, you want to have a radio commercial produced. You write down your first ideas directly. You check the text again before you send it to the commissioned recording studio. Is all the information you want there and is everything easy to understand? Then off with it.

The speaker is booked and you drive to the recording studio happy and full of expectation. After an entertaining recording session, the spot is in the can and you drive home happy and satisfied.

The next day, the finished radio spot is already available for download on the server. You download it and listen to it. Total disappointment. You notice that you can't hear the important information and, above all, have forgotten everything after a short time.

Perhaps you should have written the text differently? Yes, sure! Here are our 5 tips on how to write a cool text for a radio spot.


The most important point that you have to keep in mind when writing for an audio text is that your counterpart is not a reader, but a listener. Now you will think to yourself, well, that's great information, that was already clear to me beforehand.

OK. What does that mean then? When you read a text, you visually perceive the text directly in small units and if you do not understand something because you read it too quickly or because it is perhaps very complicated, you just jump back a section and read it again. You just don't have that chance when listening!

That is why it is extremely important not to build complicated or time-consuming sentences and to avoid nested sentences and insertions. What is easy to understand is created quite simply by limiting the information content per sentence.

You should definitely avoid the usual phrases like "... and more!", "Your contact for ...". Because the motto here is simple!

Get creative and just pull something out that you offer the customer as added value. What does he get from you that he doesn't get anywhere else. You should of course live up to your brand and if you have something like a “claim”, then you definitely have to include it in the text.


How do you package your information? You should make a list of your info that you want to put and then you should put them in an appropriate order. Then you can serve the information in bites and one after the other.

You only have this one chance to reach your target group, because as already explained above, your listener does not have the opportunity to simply read again if he has not understood what was said.

So take your listener by the hand and simply guide them along your train of thought through the text.


You should make your listener think that? As? You're supposed to be fooling him? No. But with a simply designed text, you can pick up even the weakest link in your defined target group. This is very important!

Do not use too many technical terms from your world. If you want to use them, you only have to use them very carefully or then explain them in other words. Otherwise, you will appear aloof too quickly and, above all, the intelligibility of your text will suffer as a result.

Just put the most important information at the beginning and at the end. Because that's where your audience gets the most attention. Get everything in a nutshell here. With a message at the end of the text you set a kind of anchor that sticks in your listener's memory. It is basically what is left. This can be a key statement, a current offer or the claim of your company.

So be authentic! The listener notices this and gives your information the chance to be accepted at all. Something too fake lets your receiver switch off directly and your message "fizzles out" in the ether.


Since a radio spot is just another marketing tool, the question to be asked here is who is my target group? Who is my text intended for? So call your ideal customer back to mind. Factors like age, gender, education, place of residence and interests define the way you communicate.

Make sure that your language really fits, because nothing is more embarrassing than choosing a supposedly cool youth language that no young people speak like that anymore.

Please also think in advance about whether you want to address your recipient as “you” or “you”. When you have made the decision, be sure to do it consistently throughout the text. Not that you change in the course of the text.

Above all, check which formulations your target group reacts to and which not!


That is a very important point. So that the speaker can speak your text without any problems, you should read your text aloud a few times in advance. Even while you are writing, it helps immensely to speak aloud section by section, because only then will you know whether the text can be spoken well or whether you have just written a text to read.

And before you send the text to the speaker or the recording studio, you should read it to someone who has absolutely no idea about the topic you want to promote. Does he feel addressed by your text? Also ask him if he can briefly describe the content in his words.

Then you need to brief your spokesperson. Mark the text for him so that he immediately knows where accents have to be spoken, what is important and what is less. Where to take breaks, how to pronounce first and last names or certain words. Because even if the speaker has to think less, he will be much more free and interpret your text in such a way that it convinces your target group.

And last but not least, please don't forget to keep the length. Because even a speaker will not be able to speak a DIN A4 page of text in 10 seconds. I have already explained how you do this in an earlier article.


If you have to write a text for a radio spot again, just follow this list and you can be sure that your information will definitely be better received by the recipient.

However, if you are now rather unsure and do not dare to write the text anymore, it is better to look for professionals such as a copywriter or a full-service agency, who will definitely help you. With their experience you will reach your goal safely and quickly and do not waste money in the recording studio with the recording of a bad text.

Was the article helpful? I am happy about any criticism. Just write to me in the comments.


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