You have a great product to sell and fantastic ideas about how to showcase it with video. You’ve written your storyboard, and, thinking a picture says a thousand words, you’re not that worried about the script. You just need to come up with 30-60 seconds or less to match the video, right?

Not necessarily.

Think about your TV viewing habits for a minute. Are you actually watching the commercials? Or are you using the time to check your smartphone, make a snack, grab a drink, or take a bathroom break. Maybe all of the above?


Now think about this. Your eyes may be focused on something else, but your ears are still in play.

So what’s a retailer to do? Keep it simple. Keep it short. Make it memorable.

A good commercial script should contain the same key elements as the script for a good movie, or a manuscript for a novel, but you want to tell the story in 60 seconds or less.

Remember, people are watching – or listening – passively. Your spot isn’t as invasive as some people like to think so you need to hammer home the key points.

The first thing you want to do is to grab their attention. Make it entertaining. Come up with a compelling headline, or an interesting graphic or picture that makes them want to hear or see more.

Then you want to create a need for the product you’re selling. Educate them. Why do they need this, and why do they need it now? (Save thousands! Be the first on your block! Be the envy of…)

By creating a need you’re also opening up the perfect opportunity to sell the product and the brand. You’ve told them why they need it. Now tell them why your client is the best person to buy from. (#1 dealer with highest rated customer satisfaction.)

What are you offering that no one else is? (Double the factory warranty. No payments until 2016. 0% financing.)

Add your call to action. Why do they need to act now? (Time is running out. Sale ends Monday. Close-out sale. Hurry, only ten left!)

If you’ve noticed, there’s quite a bit of repetition here. And that’s the key.

Make the offer at least twice. Include the brand or dealer name at least 4 times in a 30 second spot – double that for a 60.

Attention spans are short, people suffer from information overload, they’re easily distracted, they turn away. And the only way to expect any message to stick is to repeat it.

So to recap and repeat:

Make it entertaining. Tap into an emotion. Make them laugh. Make them cry. Make them perk up.

Educate them. Why they need the product. Why the need to buy it from you. Why it’s better than the other guy’s product. Why they should act now.

Make the call to action. If they don’t act now, somehow they’ll be missing out, or will miss a specific opportunity.