Every advert broadcast on television adheres to certain codes and conventions that help establish it’s structure as an advert, and these are:
The USP: The one thing that makes the product being advertised stand out from the rest of the competition, or any part of the product that makes it different from similar products.
Pack-shot: a close-up shot of the product, but it’s usually shown in the wrapping. Pack-shots are used to link the emotional impact of the advert to seeing the product at the point of purchase, like watching an advert for McDonald’s and then seeing someone buy a burger of fries at a McDonald’s restaurant, and this is done so the consumer watching the advert knows what to pick up and buy. Pack-shots are usually shown at the end of an advert for 5 seconds to let the consumer absorb the image of the brand.
Tag-line: The tag-line of an advert sums up the whole company or product being advertised. a good tag-line can be remembered for years, and some tag-lines even outlive their products. when a company uses a tag-line, their aim is to get it into the minds of consumers so they think about the company and their products more often.
Jingle: A jingle is really a musical tag-line if you think about it, and whereas a good tag-line on a print advert can stay in the consumer’s for some time, combining a clever tag-line and simple (usually rhyming), catchy music can make an advert that endures in the consumer’s memory a long time after watching the advert, so whenever they see the product at a store they’ll remember the jingle and will be more likely to buy the product because of the mental association made by the jingle.
Brand: The company that makes a range of products, which usually get advertised and sold under their name, like Nike for example.
Product: A service or idea that has specific features suited to a target audience which is then distributed by a company to outlets like shops and stores, and the products are then purchased by consumers.
Voice-over: A voice-over or V/O for short, is played over the advert or programme that’s being shown but the person speaking isn’t seen. voice-overs have become so common in adverts that i don’t think we even realise it, and unless they’re very clever not a lot of adverts can get their across about their product without a voice-over to back it up. Voice-overs are useful as you don’t need to use a human spokesman to endorse the advert, which means more time can be spent on showing the product or setting up a movie storyline visually. A recent example of an advert with an effective V/O are the More Than Freeman adverts. all the adverts show are various places where incidents can happen like the home and what more than insurance can do for you. you’d think it was the real Morgan freeman speaking, but as the advert ends it’s revealed to be a white man, who’s usually standing somewhere hidden, called more than freeman and he is played and voiced by Josh Robert Thompson.
Music bed: the background music for an advert. it can be especially made for the advert by musicians hired by the company or it can be an existing track used to boost the product’s popularity. if a track from an artist is used and the advert is a huge success it can also boost the artist’s record sales. Take Lynx, for example: in 2003 when they were marketing Lynx Pulse, for the TV advert they used a track called ‘Make Luv’ by Oliver Cheatham. soon after the advert was shown, when the actual track was released it went straight to no. 1, and it was partly due to the exposure given by the advert.
High Cutting Ratio:this just means a lot of cuts in one video. most adverts have a very high cutting ratio, and because a normal advert is usually 30 seconds long it will usually have 22 shots, which is faster than a news piece, in which it’s one continuous shot of the newsreader cut with scenes from other reporters from their area and around the world doing their report of the news, or a drama, as there is a lot of scenes and a large storyline so a slower cutting ratio is needed so the viewer can keep up with the pace of the story. The reason why adverts have a very high cutting ratio is because everything about the product and its features (USP) or the story that surrounds the product needs to be condensed into 30 seconds or less. most of the shots in an advert usually show the product being used or eaten by someone, then the tagline and jingle are usually seen at the end with the pack-shot of the product. the voice-over can placed through the advert or added at the end to give an effect, like for a public awareness advert stating facts about road safety or drink driving. compared to dramas and news reports adverts don’t have a lot of time to express everything about their product as well as adding all other elements together, so a high cutting ratio is needed so they can take the shots they need can cut them into an advert with a cohesive beginning, middle, and end.
I will show examples of three adverts that have these elements: the first will highlight the pack-shot, tag-line, jingle, brand and the product, the second advert will focus on the voice-over aspect, and the third will focus on the music bed in the advert. the three adverts I have chosen are the McDonald’s pounds saver menu advert, the More Than Freeman “Roof-tile” advert, and the Lynx Pulse advert that uses the song, ‘Make Luv’. after I upload these examples and explain a little further about them I will come to my conclusion.