How to Write Captivating Commercials and Promos

Lesson 3/11 - Create an Unexpected Promo Concept


How to Write Captivating Commercials and Promos


Lesson Info

Create an Unexpected Promo Concept

Let's dig into how to create unexpected promotion concepts. So, we're gonna talk a little bit about avoiding cliches, or shifting cliches, because sometimes we can't completely ignore them or avoid them. So, what I want you to do is first avoid any business jargon in your promotions. I must see these phrases like a bajillion times. "Move the needle," "a paradigm shift." Like, get rid of it, we don't need those, right? They're very cliche in the way that everyone uses them. Now look, we all do need to move the needle. (laughing) Right, like I get it. So, that's why when I say cliches, it's like, no, it's okay that you help people move the needle, or you wanna move the needle, right? It's okay if you help people make a paradigm shift. We just don't necessarily wanna say that, 'cause the problem with saying it is that everyone else is saying it in your industry, and then nothing is like, it could be just copied and pasted onto anyone. We definitely don't want that. We want it to reflect a...

ll the great stuff that we just went through in your creative brief, so it should have, like, all of your oomph into it, exactly your audience, what describes you, how you want them to feel. So again, if these two phrases are something that you need to use, or one of these, just think about what's more visually captivating for people. So, for this it's like, instead of "move the needle," just say you wanna propel them, right? Again, that's way more visual. When we hear "propel," it's like, okay, you know, like, you probably already wanna go like this. Like, you feel it in your bones. That's more powerful. For "paradigm shift," let's say you used humor like Nicki, right? So, she might wanna use, instead of saying "I help people make a paradigm shift," she might say "shift happens," right? As like a little tweak and incorporating her humor. Now, that wouldn't work for everybody. That's only gonna work for the person that that's part of their brand is to use humor, right? So, for somebody else, that might totally turn you off and your audience, so that's the point is always refer back to your creative brief, most important thing of this entire lesson that you'll learn. But this is basically how we're incorporating that into our promo. So, next thing is don't be too literal. Okay, if you're a health coach, don't have a promotion of sipping smoothies in the kitchen. Like, how many health promotions have we seen where everybody's drinking green juice? Like, everybody drinks it! We drink it in a field, a meadow, the kitchen. Like, I mean, we run out of spots, right? But if you absolutely do teach people, like you're very passionate about drinking juice or smoothies, that doesn't mean don't have that in your business. It's valid to have in your business, but do something else with it, do something surprising. Don't be so literal as, like, "I'm in my kitchen with my smoothie." Right, we all are. Right, that's where we all make it. So instead, if you love rock climbing, sip your darn smoothie while you're rock climbing, right? That might not, you might have to do a little camera tricks to do that, but fine. Like, at least it's visually captivating and engaging, right? It's showing you in another element. That would work if, like, your brand was one of excitement and adventure. People wanna show that. So, if you're a health coach, or a nutritionist, dietician, anyone in the fitness world, and you want people to drink smoothies, this could be a fun way to do it if you have that adventure angle. Maybe, you know, you make green smoothies into something else, so make 'em into cupcakes. Right, like do something else. Use all the ingredients you would put in a smoothie and somehow make it a cupcake. A friend of mine makes green smoothie cakes, so I know that this is possible. It's a real thing, people. But that could be like if your brand is more about decadence, right, if you have more of that and it's like you love the sweets and things like that, you have more of a guilty pleasure vibe like I do. That's how you could take that and have it not be so literal as sipping it in the kitchen. Okay, now don't pay attention to the competition, because it's too easy to get inspired. So always take promotion inspiration, or just inspiration period, from outside of your industry. This is a trick we used when I used to work in the agency world. Like, we would never go and be like, "Let's get inspired and look at what "all the competition is doing." I mean, we might have an awareness overall of what they're doing, but we're going and doing something else. So, one trick we used to use is every time we felt creatively dead, we would go to the toy store, and we'd just walk up and down the aisles and look at the packaging, and like what popped for us. Why did we pick that over that? What's exciting, why is this on the shelves the way that it is? Like, what colors are exciting, what words are popping out off those packages? And so, all of those things are just really fun to take a peak at. So, don't pay attention to your own industry, even if you intentionally are like, "I'll never copy anyone." Right, we all have that intention. It's too hard to not soak in what they're doing, right? And if you absolutely have to pay attention to competition because maybe that's part of your job responsibility, like your boss is like, "No, no," if you work in an agency. Then maybe just pick two to three and be very conscious of, like, here is what they're doing, but don't use it in your creative process. Like, don't go back and refer back to that, and always make sure you get fresh inspo somewhere else. I personally love to get inspiration from ridiculous places like romance novels. So, I'll go and look at all the ridiculous covers and read all the book jackets and it's really fun because it shows you how to weave a narrative in an exciting way.

Class Description

Commercials, teasers and promos are a great way to publicize your business. But taking on the task of creating advertising that looks professional and grabs people’s attention can be intimidating. The last thing you want to do is put out ads that are amateurish or tacky.

The good news is you don’t have to hire an expensive agency to create compelling commercials. This class will walk you through all the steps of how to do it yourself, from coming up with a clever concept to producing your ad on a tight budget.

As a brand and marketing consultant for businesses and a successful writer for movies and TV, instructor Melissa Cassera will show you how to use screenwriting tools and techniques to develop dynamic, award-worthy promos that drive sales and win clients.

In this class, you’ll learn how to:

  • Understand visual engagement and why it’s important to show, not tell.
  • Create an effective hook so your audience will pay attention and remember your ad.
  • Add emotion to your commercial so it stands out from the rest.
  • Develop a commercial brief.
  • Avoid using clichés and go for the unexpected instead.
  • Strike the right balance between entertainment and sales pitch.
  • Write an awesome tagline.
  • Master the art of the tease to add an air of mystery without being confusing.
  • Incorporate audience involvement to increase engagement.