All about Advertising TV: The Pitch: OMG it’s a TV Commercial! Part One.



Our next few pieces are about TV. Face it, TV is, still, the most prestigious and fun thing a creative can do. If you haven’t, one day, you’ll be asked to pitch TV to a client. It will be your ticket out of a windowless “Death Row”) corridor office and maybe your portfolio school paying off.


It may go like this:

The toothpaste project begins for yourself and your beloved partner, in the conference room with seven other two-person teams, the Executive Creative Directors, Senior Creative Directors, Group Heads, Associate Creative Directors, and the Chief Creative Officer. Everyone answers to someone that’s why you need all the Creative Directors. 

Executive Creative Directors and Senior Creative Directors boss around everyone but answer to the Chief Creative Officers who are people you would seek, for leadership, if there were an armed conflict with another agency. If the Executive Chief Creative Officer Worldwide attends then the account is troubled as they surface as often as Girl Scouts at a GSA meeting.


No Creative Director will talk to you if you don’t have a title. It’s very impressive. They talk through other Creative Directors with less impressive titles than they.  This doesn’t apply to Associate Creative Directors who are Creative Directors in charge of themselves and are happy as most don’t know that they don’t have any power. This system is reasonable because as a Creative Director there are always people to blame who aren’t you.




 “Traffic People,” who have been recruited to advertising from the most efficient prisons in the world, will remind you of deadlines.

Account people will “pre advise” you to make the “supers” larger. You will argue that you haven’t created supers yet and you are going to try and stay away from “supers.”  They will reply: “Oh, and I guess no disclaimer either, “Anarchist.”  They will call an emergency meeting with the agency board. You’ll be denied window access for another two years.

The meeting, which will start late, will last fifteen minutes and you will be informed that the TV commercial will be a tactical to confront a very evil toothpaste  (Evil Paste) that has a new product better than anything your toothpaste (Angel Paste) has.

You’ll have a product, which is better than what Evil Paste has, but it won’t be ready for a while. It will be your agency’s duty to tell all the people that the product you have (Angel Paste White) is better than the product that Evil Paste (Evil Almost Platinum) has until your product, that will be ready in a while, will really better than Evil Almost Platinum.  

But, you’ll worry that Evil Paste may have a product in development that could be better than Angel Paste White which you won’t have yet but will have soon. This is part of what your creative brief. You’ll eventually receive information on all the products that no one has, yet.



You won’t discuss this brief with anyone nor will you date or reproduce until the end of the project as spies from Evil Paste’s ad agency may use aggressive sexual tactics to get information about the work. Stay home for the duration of the project.


At meeting’s end, which will be late, you will be instructed to come up with “roughs” for next meeting, just concepts. Don’t listen. Cash in your IRA and come with complete commercials. Invest in a Beatles track or Kings of Leon track. Let people know that you liked Kings of Leon before they were popular.

If you have questions you’ll be instructed to make an appointment with your Group Head. His/her availability will be about three weeks.


            At the next meeting, which will start late, concepts will be picked by the Creative Directors, Group Heads, Senior Creative Directors, Executive Creative Directors and the Chief Creative Officer. The chosen will be presented to the client, maybe, in Cincinnati.

If you win you will go to, maybe, Cincinnati to present.  This is great because most can’t wait to head to Cincinnati, in February, for a stay.


You’ll have two weeks.  Your partner, if an Art Director, will take this project seriously as he/she will want to go to Cincinnati, you will get pages of beautifully thought out visuals and mood boards. Your partner if a Copy Writer will take this project seriously as he/she will want to go to Cincinnati, you will get copy and ideas no later than 11PM the night before.  If you are chosen slip a note about your genius under doors of the non-chosen as people on a team love information.


Going to, maybe, Cincinnati: The Chief Creative Officer, The Executive Creative Directors, Senior Creative Directors, Creative Directors, Group Heads, Associate Creative Directors, Account Supes, and Execs, and Media people.


You’ll take 100 100-page color presentation booklets with creative and rationale that could be on presented on an iPad but books are needed so all at the meeting, which will start late, have something to play with. Eventually, many battles will take place on set, as client and agency argue about the creative they haven’t read. Don’t worry, your “creative” won’t be recognizable and you will be at back of set eating breakfast from your Comfort Inn before finding out what “Craft Service” is.  No one will talk to you. It will be impressive.


Next: Your presentation. 


2 thoughts on “All about Advertising TV: The Pitch: OMG it’s a TV Commercial! Part One.

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