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Old July 19th, 2007, 10:54 PM   #1
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Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: North Port, FL
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Commercial Question

Hello. I was wondering if anyone can help me out on the basic of commercial building. What size should I start off with? And what is important to keep in mind while putting it all together. I'll be using premire and affter effects for windows.

Please any advice or tips to start off would be appriciated. I already have all the footage but I need to start slicing it up and putting together.

Thanks in advance.
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Old July 20th, 2007, 11:59 AM   #2
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Scottsdale, AZ 85260
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Commercials 101.

The required format is determined by the entity BROADCASTING the commercial. They might request anything from Digibeta down to ancient 3/4" analog videotape in some old small market local station. Most today will accept some form of DV.

The LENGTH of your commercial is more critical. Broadcasters sell time. Typically in increments of 30 seconds.

Also on small-market local stations you may find 60 second avails. These aren't the norm on bigger networks, because they COST a lot to run. YMMV.

Some stations in expensive markets offer "split 30's" which are 15 seconds in length and you may run into stations that "sell" 10 sec promo slots - but the VAST majority of spots avails are 30 seconds. (A 29.5 second TV spot is considered "perfect" but you're buying 30 seconds, so if your spot is on or under precisely 30, you're good to go.

The one, single and ONLY thing you must keep in mind when making a commercial is this: How can I MAXIMIZE it's sales effect. Period. Every single word of copy. Every image. Every action, actor and adverb that helps you SELL is good. Every one that does not should be replaced before the spot airs.

Commercials are not about being "creative" or "funny" or "clever" or "smart" or about showing off your fancy NLE effects or how wonderful a shooter you are. They're about SELLING STUFF to a mass audience. PERIOD.

An ugly, dumb, painful to watch commercial that moves a million units is (and always will be) BETTER than a beautiful, hip or cool spot that sells bupkis.

Never forget this.

A good plan is to START with something that attracts the audience's attention. And END with something that will motivate them to pick up the phone or log on to the web and BUY something.

I promise you that if your commercial SELLS a whole lot of stuff, the person who paid you to make it WILL call you back to try to do it again. If your commercial does NOT sell a lot of stuff. Your phone will remain silent.

A commercial is something that SELLS stuff. Period. End of discussion.
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Old July 20th, 2007, 12:06 PM   #3
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Excellent post. Reminded me of a time about 10 years ago the local cable channel where I lived at the time was running a really really low budget infomercial on this stuff called Amaloy... an aluminum alloy that you could use to repair, well just about anything aluminum, like stripped threaded sockets on a lawnmower engine... video wise it was horrible, but I couldn't stop watching it. they wre repairing lawn chairs etc, with this stuff and a propane torch. Content is king.

simple marketing ... state the problem, show them a solution, make the offer.
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