28 Jul Four Ways I Inject Confidence in Treatments as a TVC Treatment Writer
Agencies and clients need to feel a certain level of confidence in order to hire you. When they say “YOU – YOU’RE THE ONE WE WANT TO MAKE THIS FILM,” it has to because they are confident in you. Sure, your reel is strong and full of A-list brands and magical moments captured by your talent. But that was the past. The client you’re pitching is in the here & now and they have to know they can count on you to deliver on THIS project. Not your past ones.
Of course, YOU know that you can deliver. But, that doesn’t matter.
What matters is confidence:
- The confidence the agency+client have in you.
- The confidence you display in the writing of the TVC treatment.
Of course I’m referring to a treatment that you might not be writing much of – depending on how busy you are and how you like to roll.
As a TVC treatment writer, it’s my job to take your input and turn it into a winning pitch using my words. Now, I typically get a certain “feel” for a director’s confidence, but if I don’t (meaning if it’s not immediately apparent because we didn’t speak or I was sent minimal input) I try to inject a certain amount of confidence in various strategic ways. Let’s take a look at a few of those ways.
TVC Treatment Writer Confidence Tactics:
- A strong call to action. This one is pretty straightforward. I use a call to action aimed at the agency+client to show you, the director, as a creative leader in the treatment – which translates to being a creative leader on the project. Example: “So let’s be bold. Let’s take tradition and leave it for others to adhere to. We’ve got rules to break, imagination to capture, and cars to sell.” This kind of confidence is good because you’re not “going it alone” it’s a call to arms for the client whereby the director says, roughly: “I’m pumped. I’m ready. But I can’t do this without the nod from you. So get on my team and let’s make some magic.”
- It worked Last time. I find this works with directors who don’t want to come off as sounding too confident, but still want their work to speak volumes. It involves using a reference to past work and saying how a particular strategy or tactic will benefit the client in the project at-hand. Example: “Street casting worked wonders for the XYZ film I did late last year. It gave us great results in terms of talent and authenticity and the client was thrilled with the way we pulled it off in so many locations. I really think it’s worth a look on this project as I think it could hold the key to our casting success.” See? Confident, not cocky.
- Deferring to the brief in a strong, positive way. There’s something to be said for embracing ideas contained in the brief. It says that you’re confident enough to accept that some really damn good ideas come from the agency and client. Sure they aren’t all winners, but when you find a gem in the brief, lean on it. Example: “I have to admit, I had a bunch of ideas when it came to how to solve XYZ problem, but the idea in the brief kept popping up in my head as the best solution. I think if we embrace it and make it even better by adding ABC, then we’ll be in a great place in terms of keeping the script true to the brand.” It’s ok for the agency to have a good idea, and it’s a sign of confidence to admit that the idea is decent.
- Leaning in to the emotional side. TV commercials are emotional by nature. It’s how they sell. By really digging into how your vision taps into the emotion of the target audience, you show that you’re confident enough to get the audience and the reaction(s) that you want from them. Tell the client that you want the film to be an emotionally-griping journey that stops viewers dead in their tracks, forces them to tears and then rewards them with a joyous resolution that makes them run out and buy XYZ product.
Obviously, there are more than four ways that, as a TVC treatment writer, I can show your confidence in a pitch. But these are four that came to mind while I was waiting for feedback on a treatment I’m writing right now.
So, if you’re the strong, silent type, or you simply think your reel should stand alone and say what you think it will say, I hope you don’t mind if I inject a little bit of confidence into your treatment. Confidence, the way that I use it as a TVC treatment writer, does not have to be cocky and it goes a long way toward showing the agency+client that you’re the right director for the gig.
Yes, of course your reel says a lot about your talent, but your treatment says a lot about your confidence, your approach, and the kind of interactions the agency+client can expect when dealing with you.
TVC Treatment Writer – OUT!