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Guides for new to TV clients – a guide to what makes a good DRTV ad

25 January 2022

To run a successful TV campaign, you need to buy the right airtime and create an effective commercial. We’ve covered part of how to do both of those in our guide to buying airtime and our guide to the TV commercial production process. But what about the ad itself?

At Join the Dots, we specialise in performance TV, also known as direct response TV or DRTV (an ad that encourages you to do engage directly with the company, like by ringing a number). So we know what makes a good direct response TV ad.

On average, people watch 42 TV ads a day.

To make your ad stand out and generate the response you want, there are some tried and tested ways to make it as effective as possible.

1. Have one clear message

You have a very short opportunity to convey what you need to say, so be single-minded and clear in your proposition. Throw too many messages at your audience and they might miss all of them in the noise.

2. Reinforce the message

Once you have that one, clear message, it must be memorable. Techniques like a catchy jingle, unique characters, or strong use of colour can help to instil the message in the audience members’ minds. These techniques must be an extension of the core brand values to ensure continuity across comms.

3. Build an emotional connection with the viewer

Find a human truth that relates to your product or service that will then resonate with your audience. This can often be achieved through humour, nostalgia, cultural references, colloquialisms etc.

4. Information vs. call to action

Ensure there is the right balance between information and call to action. The viewer needs to understand immediately what you want them to do and how they can do it.

5. DRTV specialist

Use an agency that specialises in producing direct response ads as they will make an ad that has low production costs but high production values.

6. Maximise value

When you go to script a DRTV ad, ensure all other channels are considered. This way the team can pre-plan to shoot any extra footage or photography to be used across digital, press, direct marketing etc. This not only will save money in the long run, but it will also ensure consistency of comms.

We don’t produce DRTV ads at Join the Dots, but we work closely with several preferred partners who specialise in TV commercial production who we can introduce you to. Our job is to ensure we plan and buy the right airtime as effectively as possible so the commercial is seen in the right place at the right time by the right people.
If you would like to find out more, contact Clare Arndell

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