Advertising jingles. They need to catch the attention of the listener, be memorable and not easily forgotten.
Often when I visit clients, I have the opportunity to talk about our jingle production. However, rather than just talk and play some of our previous jingles, it's fun to demonstrate how fast and creative our team can be.
Here's 1 brief we sent to Gavin, our jingle producer:
1. Mention: All 4 names of the sales team (Melissa, Tania, Rose & Pierre).
2. Must include: The heat in this town drives everyone crazy.
3. Music style: Urban / pop, in the style of Bruno Mars.
Just 2 hours later, I played the result live to the sales team.
And here's another:
1. Mention: Each of the creative team individually (Kylie, Stuie, Karen, Nic & Carl).
2. Must include: The phrase 'it'll all get done by midday'.
Character voiceovers can give your ads a great point of difference.
Don't believe me? Below is a brilliant example from the BBC of how a character voice can bring ordinary, everyday vision to life.
A clever script and the right talent can make all the difference to even the most 'boring' footage :)
One of the most amazing mimics & character voiceovers I have heard is Lenny. I've worked with him for years, and he never ceases to amaze. Click here to listen to his 6 minute demo, showcasing over 50 different character voices.
Want to book him?
The difference between a 'good' voiceover and a 'great' voiceover is actually a lot less than you might think.
When I'm talking with a would-be voice about how to get a start in the industry, I almost always tell them..
...Don't just read the script, really get inside the words and 'sell' it.
It's only usually a small detail, a subtlety, a simple inflection or an emphasis on a particular phrase, but an experienced voiceover can really make scripts come to life because they know how to get 'inside' the words.
Recording a great voiceover that conveys the emotion and 'sell' of a script, regardless of the style, is a real art and one that is usually only learned from years of practice. I've often found myself directing a voice and asking for multiple takes of one line, with very minute differences in how it's read. It's always when the voice is putting real meaning behind her words, when she is really 'believing' what she's reading that you hear real magic.
In 2012, we recorded a voiceover for this showreel. I love the emotion and tone of the read (and the shots aren't half bad either!)
The difference between a good and great voiceove is often only very small. But it's these small details, the nuances, the inflections, the 'sell' that really sets great voices apart.
PowerPoint presentations can be a very effective way to communicate your message to a group of people. Adding a PowerPoint voiceover can take that communication to the next level.
Something powerful happens when words and images on a screen are matched with the right music and strong narrative.
Carmine Gallo from BusinessWeek.com shares a few points you might like to bear in mind when putting together a PowerPoint presentation.
1. Plan in analog
Plan your PowerPoint presentations using pen and paper.
'Storyboard' the plot, and sketch the script. Brainstorming and whiteboarding should always come before you start building slides. That way, you'll know the end goal before you even start.
Remember; the narrative always comes first; the slides are there to complement your story.
2. Create Twitter-friendly descriptions
Create a single-sentence description for every product if possible.
These 'headlines' will help your audience categorize a new product and should always be concise enough to fit in a 140-character Twitter post.
For example, when Steve Jobs introduced the MacBook Air in 2008, he said that is it simply “The world’s thinnest notebook.”
That one short sentence spoke volumes. Jobs filled in the details during his presentation and on the Apple website, but he found one sentence or phrase — usually projected behind him in white letters on a black background — to position every product.
The audience needs to see the big picture before they can digest the details. A product or idea that can’t be described in 140 characters or less should go back to the drawing board.
3. Focus on the benefits
Why should I care?
Potential consumers always ask themselves (even if they’re not aware of it): “Why should I care?”
And that’s why Apple sells the benefit behind every new product or feature in a clear, concise manner.
Why buy an iPhone 4GS? Because “it’s the most amazing iPhone yet.” What’s so great about Time Capsule? “All your irreplaceable photos, videos and documents are automatically protect.
Nobody cares about products. They only care about how the product or service will improve their lives.
4. The 'Rule of Three'
The number three is a powerful concept in writing.
Playwrights know that three is more dramatic than two; comedians know that three is funnier than four; and three points in a presentation are more memorable than six or eight.
Even if you have 20 points to make, your audience is only capable of holding three or four of them in short term memory.
Better that they remember three than forget everything.
5. Create visual slides
Eliminate “clutter.” Steer away from bullet points in your presentations. Instead, rely on high quality photographs, graphics and images.
The average PowerPoint slide has 40 words, yet this is often much more then the brain can digest and retain.
Minimising the word count on each slide, relying on graphics and communicating the detail with the voiceover means the human brain will process and retain the info.
This technique is called “Picture Superiority” — information is more effectively recalled when text and images are combined.
6. Make numbers meaningful
Put big numbers into context, and make it relevant to your audience.
The bigger the number, the more important this is.
For example, when the U.S. government bailed out the economy to the tune of $700 billion, it was too huge a number for most people to comprehend.
Journalists tried to put it into context. One example in particular seemed to capture the attention of the press — $700 billion is like spending $1 million a day since the day Christ was born. Now that’s a big number!
7. Use zippy words
Use plain English in the voiceover script. Many businesses use words that are obtuse, vague or confusing, so why not use language that is simple?
Steer away from jargon that clouds many corporate presentations — terms like “best of breed” or “thought leadership.” Keep things clear, direct and memorable.
Creating a great presentation is much more then just throwing some words on the screen and using every transition in the software to move between slides.
Keep any graphics and text clean, uncluttered, and simple, and consider adding a PowerPoint voiceover to communicate the detail.
Here is an example of how bad slides can kill the greatest narrative.