The various stages in the placing of a commercial on television can be seen in this storyboard, a device used by advertising agencies and commercial producers to plan the contents of their advertisements and visualise how they will appear on the screen.
1 Briefing the Agency … A manufacturer has developed a new product, and needs to launch it into the consumer market. So he asks his advertising agency to prepare a campaign. After considering press, radio and posters, they tell him that television advertising is the answer – and that Thames in London offers him the best means of reaching his target audience.
2 … planning the commercial – The agency marketing people analyse the product, identify the features which distinguish it from the competition, and assess its consumer appeal. Then the agency creative staff begin work on scripting and designing the commercial. Result: they produce a storyboard which helps them explain their concept to the client.
3 … and into the studio – Once the client has approved the script and storyboard, the agency arranges for the commercial to be produced, usually through an independent commercial production company. Meanwhile, the agency’s media buyers negotiate with Thames’ Sales Department to arrange a suitable schedule of advertising “spots” for the commercial to appear in.
4 Transmission … The commercial is finished, submitted to Thames and the ITCA for approval, and a film or videotape copy is lodged with Thames for slotting into the agreed commercial breaks along with other advertisements. Result: the client’s sales figures lead him to begin planning a national campaign with Thames as the springboard.