12 quick ideas to make a low budget ad film

Vintage Pepsi Ad

Pepsi Vintage Ad- Image Courtesy Via

Advertising is all about sharing information. It’s about new product or service, a new feature, a promotional offer, an attractive price or a new store or online presence. In marketing, it is often said “advertising” is usually done first to get a customer’s attention. “selling” follows to get the customer’s money. Gone are those good old days as it is shown in the ad poster of Pepsi over here. Today there is no luxury to rest on your laurels, any new product or startup has ability to leverage technology and grab attention.

May be it not as simple as it sound, because advertising needs the creative bend to grab attention of potential buyers. It is complex for a smaller company or start-up. And it is challenging for the larger corporations for larger corporations as well. Start-up and young organisation have challenges to deal with such as tight budget, building new brand and communication strategy. And larger corporations need to work with tight set of rule linked to legacy. For large corporation, big budget may give flexibility to choose best talent from best agency. Yet it may not guarantee

the best results from a creative person working under tight rules.

Doing business without advertising is like winking at a girl in the dark. You know what you are doing but nobody else does.”
– Steuart Henderson Britt- Award-winning Canadian historian, culture critic, filmmaker, and musician

The low budget and creative advertisement is a good option both for the start-up and large corporations. Any ad film will need to focus on the target segment of customers and market it is going to serve. Ad-film should have an ability to grab attention by delivering a pre-decided message in a creative way. What makes the advertising film interesting is story-line. Everyone loves to listen a good story. A great story comprises of interesting characters and great location. All these sound like only professionals will be able to make great ad-films. No, there are ways to save and still make a great advertising.

12 quick ideas to make a low budget ad film.

  1. Brainstorm for key message your ad film will deliver. This is key and foundation of an ad-film. Use free tools for mind mapping like Freemind. Or you can also use the Android App like Simple Free Mind to brainstorm and organise the thought process. You use technology or not, good ideas are always needed in past, present or future.
  2. Everyone likes a good story. You don’t need the professional writers for a good story. Start with a single point of inspiration and expand it to make a story. You can take inspiration from events around you, a catching news in TV, or a great story. Run the script through your relatives and friends. Tell it your kids if it catches their attention, it should be good to go. Follow the plan Tell, explain and repeat to make sure the points are conveyed and caught in the viewers mind. However, the genre changes with the time, your story needs to connect emotionally with audience. In past it was shown women working at home, today it may not necessarily fit in.
  3. Use some of great free online tools to build your storyboard and develop the screenplay . Tools like Twine  helps you to build interactive non-linear story-lines and test your script. You can use these tools to define your story in frames. This will help in shooting and editing the ad-films later on
  4. Decide on a low location option, it can be your home, your office or a friends place. Low location does not mean it will be cheap looking. Remember the camera catches only a section of space. So decide on the appropriate location at your home or office that deliver as per the script. Gardens and public places are other options as well.
  5. Choose the character, you need not hire a high profile actor or actress. Substitute it with the cartoon character, caricature or with your cousins or relative. If your artist friend help you to draw some good cartoons, scenes or caricature, you can save a good amount. Sometime script design is such that it needs to show any hand, leg or back with sound and message. This makes task quite easy and low cost.
  6. Use your home camcorder or mobile phone to save money. Now a days good HD camcorder are available that deliver as good a quality as professional. Take good amount of footage so that you have ample amount to edit. Also take some good photographs for the placements in the transitions.
  7. For animation use online free tools like http://wideo.co/ or http://goanimate.com/. Their trial version is excellent and free for a single ad-film.
  8. www.youtube.com has a good tool for the video editing and sharing. You can also download desktop tools like Openshot and kdenlive. Both the tools are free, these are easy yet deliver the professional results.
  9. Use free background sound file available on internet. The general sounds like flowing water, dog barking, pet animal sound, traffic etc. are available free of cost. For songs or lighter background music, use classics like Bethovens, Mozart. These are royalty free high quality music. Try out online Flashkit or try Free sound, they provide good quality royalty free sound. Audacity  is a good and free software for editing sound files.
  10. Once the adfilm is ready, take feedback from your friends, family and colleagues. If you are finding it difficult to meet in person, develop an online survey and show the clip online before taking the survey. Kwiksurvey , Surveymonkey and eSurv are great tools for free surveys. You can also use the ready templates via these systems. Based on the results ad-film can changed to suit audience preferences.
  11. Use social media and friends network to distribute the ad-film. Build a facebook page, upload video and ask your friends to like it. Also use the twitter, google+ and other channels. Drive it with positive remarks and make sure to reply all the comments
  12. Track and measure with free tools like Google Analytics. Use the google link builder tool to track the social media engagements. Use the free give aways to drive engagements and measure them. Hosting small quiz or game based on the adfilm is great low cost option to drive the viewer engagement

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About Sudeep

I am an avid reader, an average writer, an amateur painter and a consultant by profession. I also did my mechanical engineering and MBA to earn my bread. If you liked my thoughts and images please do comment

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