By Jim Delbridge, Director at LRD-The Big Idea


  • Radio is known as ‘the last media before purchase’. That means that many people will listen to the radio while they are driving. They won’t be reading a newspaper or watching television. Tell them where you are based so they can pop in if they are passing.
  • Radio is perfect for raising brand awareness but not for featuring long lists of information so keep your script simple. Leave the catalogue of sale items for the newspaper.
  • Putting personality into a production is vital. Choose people that can act and put a bit of life into it rather than the standard voice-over artist.
  • Script writers are always looking for creative vehicles to deliver key messages but avoid clichés if you can. The world does not need another radio commercial featuring two women in conversation over the phone repeating your clients phone number!
  • Think about the production of the commercial and get it done properly. Too many good ideas will have been wasted because the different elements in your script have not been recorded or mixed properly. Don’t think you can do it yourself. Hire professionals!!
  • Try to make your ad as memorable as possible by including humour or a catchy song that the audience will store in their minds and recognise the next time they hear it.
  • Exploit the medium to its full advantage. With sound effects it is easy and inexpensive to ‘paint an aural picture’ of two space ships in battle. Now imagine making the same ad for TV.
  • Ensure your commercial is the right length for what you want to achieve. Thirty seconds is usually adequate. If you need longer then maybe you are trying to include too much.
  • Your script must have relevance. If it features Tarzan in the jungle make sure you can make a connection to the product or service you are trying to promote otherwise listeners will be confused.
  • If you need to write a series of commercials, see if you can work in common factors in all of them so that they all sound like they are from the same family.