“Every successful promotional message must attract attention, arouse interest, stimulate desire, and present a compelling call for action.”
– Rieck, Dean
Did you know that the scriptwriter of promotional spots often draws on advertising principles? In fact, many copywriters work for advertising firms or agencies. Therefore, this article focuses on the advertising approaches adopted for scriptwriting.
The AIDA Approach
Copywriting remains, first and foremost, a marketing strategy. For instance, a TV spot is not a work of art but a piece of persuasive argument with a marketing objective. As a result, advertising approaches influence the process of shaping the concept and writing the script.
One of the most famous and commonly used copywriting formulas, which applies to television spots, is AIDA. It stands for Attention, Interest, Desire, Action. These four words indicate what a good promotional spot should achieve:
• Attract the attention of viewers
• Make the viewers interested in the product or service being advertised
• Create a desire within the target audience for the product or service
• Invite the viewers to take a specific action
Attract the Attention of Viewers
A good spot grabs the attention of television viewers. When writing the script, the copywriter includes an attention-grabbing element. For example, it can be a celebrity featured in the spot or a piece of famous music played at the start of the spot.
Hence, the opening of a spot is essential as it will determine if viewers will watch the remainder or not. If a spot has a clearly defined target audience, the copywriter writes an event, a person or song that will attract the attention of people from that demographic. A spot beginning with a middle-aged woman a the house is likely to attract housewives, while another spot with the visuals of young men in a convertible playing loud music will attract the attention of a different type of audience.
Keep Viewers Interested
Once the copywriter has attracted the attention of the audience, he or she keeps them interested in the product or service being advertised. The core message of the spot clearly states the appealing features of the product or service. Copywriters often generate interest by solving a problem, whether implicit or explicit.
Let me give you a simple example. In a spot opening with a middle-aged woman, the copywriter describes a product with which she can clean the house so quickly she will have time to invite friends and clean the house while her husband and children are not home during the day. In this example, the copywriter implicitly refers to the problem of housewives getting bored during the day.
Creates Desire Within a Targeted Audience
Next, the copywriter creates a sense of desire in the viewers. In fact, the copywriter does not actually create a new desire. Instead, he or she matches an existing desire with the advertised product or service. To successfully accomplish this task, the copywriter must have access to thorough research previously undertaken on the target audience.
Invite Viewers to Take Action
The last and most important step of the AIDA(Attention, Interest, Desire, Action) formula is the call to action. Once viewers have realized the product or service suits their desire, the spot highlights what viewers should do. The objective of any spot is to elicit an action from the target audience. It consists of anything from visiting a website to buying a product. This message must be communicated towards the end of the spot. If the copywriter mentions it earlier, he or she must repeat it close to the end of the spot. It ensures the viewers do not forget critical information as a result of receiving additional information.
What do you think about the AIDA approach? Please share your comments!