Some of the biggest brands are making this mistake

Have you turned on the TV lately?

I recently watched a lot more football than I do most seasons, which means that I have to watch commercials. I usually don't watch commercials outside of sports because I don't have cable and only use Netflix, but now I have been studying the commercials to see what some big companies are doing.

THEY SUCK!

Before I get too critical, I want to break down what would make an excellent commercial and why the commercials I see on TV miss the mark. Beyond that, I want you to learn you can make better content on a lower budget that would be more effective than whatever is airing on the TV.

Just because you have more money does not mean you have effective ads.

Ad spends/budget does not equal effective ads.

Great creative equals effective ads.

What makes a good commercial

1. Hook the viewer within seconds

Commercials are coming on when the football game is not on, so this is a perfect time to tune out. You can go to the bathroom, grab a snack, talk to your friend, or look at your phone.

A commercial should make you stop in your tracks within moments. The demand for attention is high in the living room, so the commercial's first seconds are critical to deciding if people will continue to watch.

The commercial might be great, but the conversion won't happen unless you retain the viewer's attention.

2. One message

You have 30 seconds to present your mission, product, or company. You need to be clear with the one thought or takeaway you want the viewers to remember.

If a viewer of your commercial was to tell their friends about you, they need to say your message. If there are multiple messages, the viewer might get confused or forget what your message was.

Stay focused.

One message and keep it simple.

3. Clear call to action

If you have retained the viewer's attention through the whole 30 seconds, they are more than likely ready to take action.

What do you want the viewer to do next after they finish this commercial?

Channel the viewer's energy and direct them to buy your product or learn more about your brand.

Why do most commercials suck right now

Okay - let me vent.

I am SHOCKED that companies that spend millions of dollars on making a commercial and spend even more to distribute miss these three things.

Many TV commercials are 25 seconds of random things that have nothing to do with the brand, but then they just slap their logo at the end.

Have these big companies not seen what people are creating on their phones in their living room?

The main issue is a disconnect between why they are running the ad and what it actually is.

You can't make an ad and then figure out what the goals are later.

You need to figure out your goals because those goals should drive the content and ads.

When you have a big organization, it is easy for the goals not to be precise, or there is a disconnect with the production company.

Don't let your content suck

Last week we talked about improving your content by 1% daily. You might not have millions of dollars to spend on ads or content, but as you can see - that doesn't matter if you don't have sound principles and foundations down.

As you go out and create content even on a small scale, think about the three ingredients of a great commercial - A good hook, a clear message, and a solid call to action.

Focus on those three ingredients and never lose sight of them as your budget and team grow. It is okay for the exact answers to change; it is okay if the hook is new or the message has changed, but before creating the content, go back to the basics and make sure you know the hook, message, and CTA will be for that ad.

Some of the biggest brands are making this mistake

Have you turned on the TV lately?

I recently watched a lot more football than I do most seasons, which means that I have to watch commercials. I usually don't watch commercials outside of sports because I don't have cable and only use Netflix, but now I have been studying the commercials to see what some big companies are doing.

THEY SUCK!

Before I get too critical, I want to break down what would make an excellent commercial and why the commercials I see on TV miss the mark. Beyond that, I want you to learn you can make better content on a lower budget that would be more effective than whatever is airing on the TV.

Just because you have more money does not mean you have effective ads.

Ad spends/budget does not equal effective ads.

Great creative equals effective ads.

What makes a good commercial

1. Hook the viewer within seconds

Commercials are coming on when the football game is not on, so this is a perfect time to tune out. You can go to the bathroom, grab a snack, talk to your friend, or look at your phone.

A commercial should make you stop in your tracks within moments. The demand for attention is high in the living room, so the commercial's first seconds are critical to deciding if people will continue to watch.

The commercial might be great, but the conversion won't happen unless you retain the viewer's attention.

2. One message

You have 30 seconds to present your mission, product, or company. You need to be clear with the one thought or takeaway you want the viewers to remember.

If a viewer of your commercial was to tell their friends about you, they need to say your message. If there are multiple messages, the viewer might get confused or forget what your message was.

Stay focused.

One message and keep it simple.

3. Clear call to action

If you have retained the viewer's attention through the whole 30 seconds, they are more than likely ready to take action.

What do you want the viewer to do next after they finish this commercial?

Channel the viewer's energy and direct them to buy your product or learn more about your brand.

Why do most commercials suck right now

Okay - let me vent.

I am SHOCKED that companies that spend millions of dollars on making a commercial and spend even more to distribute miss these three things.

Many TV commercials are 25 seconds of random things that have nothing to do with the brand, but then they just slap their logo at the end.

Have these big companies not seen what people are creating on their phones in their living room?

The main issue is a disconnect between why they are running the ad and what it actually is.

You can't make an ad and then figure out what the goals are later.

You need to figure out your goals because those goals should drive the content and ads.

When you have a big organization, it is easy for the goals not to be precise, or there is a disconnect with the production company.

Don't let your content suck

Last week we talked about improving your content by 1% daily. You might not have millions of dollars to spend on ads or content, but as you can see - that doesn't matter if you don't have sound principles and foundations down.

As you go out and create content even on a small scale, think about the three ingredients of a great commercial - A good hook, a clear message, and a solid call to action.

Focus on those three ingredients and never lose sight of them as your budget and team grow. It is okay for the exact answers to change; it is okay if the hook is new or the message has changed, but before creating the content, go back to the basics and make sure you know the hook, message, and CTA will be for that ad.

Some of the biggest brands are making this mistake

Have you turned on the TV lately?

I recently watched a lot more football than I do most seasons, which means that I have to watch commercials. I usually don't watch commercials outside of sports because I don't have cable and only use Netflix, but now I have been studying the commercials to see what some big companies are doing.

THEY SUCK!

Before I get too critical, I want to break down what would make an excellent commercial and why the commercials I see on TV miss the mark. Beyond that, I want you to learn you can make better content on a lower budget that would be more effective than whatever is airing on the TV.

Just because you have more money does not mean you have effective ads.

Ad spends/budget does not equal effective ads.

Great creative equals effective ads.

What makes a good commercial

1. Hook the viewer within seconds

Commercials are coming on when the football game is not on, so this is a perfect time to tune out. You can go to the bathroom, grab a snack, talk to your friend, or look at your phone.

A commercial should make you stop in your tracks within moments. The demand for attention is high in the living room, so the commercial's first seconds are critical to deciding if people will continue to watch.

The commercial might be great, but the conversion won't happen unless you retain the viewer's attention.

2. One message

You have 30 seconds to present your mission, product, or company. You need to be clear with the one thought or takeaway you want the viewers to remember.

If a viewer of your commercial was to tell their friends about you, they need to say your message. If there are multiple messages, the viewer might get confused or forget what your message was.

Stay focused.

One message and keep it simple.

3. Clear call to action

If you have retained the viewer's attention through the whole 30 seconds, they are more than likely ready to take action.

What do you want the viewer to do next after they finish this commercial?

Channel the viewer's energy and direct them to buy your product or learn more about your brand.

Why do most commercials suck right now

Okay - let me vent.

I am SHOCKED that companies that spend millions of dollars on making a commercial and spend even more to distribute miss these three things.

Many TV commercials are 25 seconds of random things that have nothing to do with the brand, but then they just slap their logo at the end.

Have these big companies not seen what people are creating on their phones in their living room?

The main issue is a disconnect between why they are running the ad and what it actually is.

You can't make an ad and then figure out what the goals are later.

You need to figure out your goals because those goals should drive the content and ads.

When you have a big organization, it is easy for the goals not to be precise, or there is a disconnect with the production company.

Don't let your content suck

Last week we talked about improving your content by 1% daily. You might not have millions of dollars to spend on ads or content, but as you can see - that doesn't matter if you don't have sound principles and foundations down.

As you go out and create content even on a small scale, think about the three ingredients of a great commercial - A good hook, a clear message, and a solid call to action.

Focus on those three ingredients and never lose sight of them as your budget and team grow. It is okay for the exact answers to change; it is okay if the hook is new or the message has changed, but before creating the content, go back to the basics and make sure you know the hook, message, and CTA will be for that ad.