July 11, 2023

Using The Rules To Break The Rules – Part 1 (Implementing Traditional Screenwriting Rules in Ads)

Using the rules to break the rules

One of the fundamental principles in the art of screenwriting is encapsulated in the timeless phrase: “Show, Don’t Tell.”

Allow me to illustrate this principle through an example: Rather than merely informing your audience about the accomplishments of a skilled archer by describing the multitude of trophies they have amassed, it is far more impactful to vividly portray the archer’s remarkable skills in action. By presenting their prowess in real-time, we engage the audience’s senses and invite them to draw their own conclusions, thereby creating an immersive and enthralling cinematic experience.

Engage, Captivate, and Leave an Impression

By adhering to this rule, we grant our viewers the gift of interpretation and the pleasure of witnessing a captivating sequence unfold before their eyes.

In the realm of communication, there are moments when the power of a message left unsaid can resonate even more deeply than explicitly articulating it. This is particularly true within the context of visual-based platforms, where the impact of imagery speaks volumes.

However, it is important to note that when vying for the fleeting attention of a scrolling audience, relying solely on the power of visual storytelling may not always suffice. Surprisingly, research has shown that advertisements featuring titles or captions, which provide direct information (“telling”) atop the accompanying video, tend to outperform those that solely rely on visual content (“showing”).

In essence, while the principle of “show, don’t tell” remains a guiding principle in captivating an audience, we must acknowledge that a strategic blend of both showing and telling can enhance the effectiveness of our message. By leveraging the power of visual storytelling in conjunction with informative titles or captions, we can maximize the impact of our content and effectively captivate the attention of our target audience in the fast-paced world of scrolling.

Moreover, ads with a human finger that conveys different actions on screen and direct viewers’ eyes to essential features and elements work even better.

A Winning Formula

We have witnessed exceptional results through ads that harness a combination of key elements:

  1. Captivating audio
  2. Precisely synchronized visuals
  3. Charismatic individuals directly addressing the camera and employing expressive hand gestures
  4. The strategic inclusion of titles, and at times, subtitles

As advertisers in the dynamic landscape of the media industry, our primary objective is to not only capture the attention of the scrolling audience but also ensure their complete comprehension of our message.

To achieve this, we must embrace the mentality of a fierce contender, bringing forth our most compelling arsenal. By integrating audio that resonates, synchronized visuals that amplify the impact, charismatic presenters who establish a direct connection with the viewer through engaging gestures, and strategically placed titles that reinforce the core message, we equip ourselves with a winning formula.

This multifaceted approach allows us to captivate the scroller’s attention and ensure their full understanding, leaving a lasting impression that sets us apart from the competition.

In this ever-evolving advertising landscape, we are committed to delivering campaigns that utilize every tool at our disposal, leveraging the power of audiovisual storytelling, dynamic presenters, and impactful titles. Together, we will seize the attention of our audience, leaving an indelible mark in their minds.

Embrace the Art of Rule-Breaking: Engaging All Senses for Maximum Impact

In the realm of ad-screenwriting, it’s time to challenge the norms and ignite an immersive experience that captures every sense. With a bold approach, we can break free from conventional boundaries and create attention-grabbing campaigns that leave a lasting impression.

Thus, I conclude with the first rule of ad-screenwriting: Don’t confine yourself to mere telling; instead, master the art of showing, writing, utilizing sounds, engaging through play, and repeating. By synergistically incorporating these elements, we can craft a multisensory tapestry that grabs hold of the audience’s attention and lingers in their memory.

Let’s dare to push the boundaries and explore the vast potential that lies beyond traditional storytelling. By engaging all senses, we can captivate our audience on a profound level, forging connections that endure. The time has come to unleash our creative prowess and revolutionize the ad-screenwriting landscape with captivating narratives that resonate deeply with our viewers.


  1. Try it yourself!

Here we have a great example of a gaming ad that features so many of the aforementioned elements:

– Face close up
– TikTok filter \ Makeup
– A woman pointing to options
– Subtitles
– Bolded titles
– Loud and clear audio
– Fast paced voice over
– An in-game finger pointing to the game’s elements

No wonder this ad performed so well with this arsenal of attention-grabbing elements.

2. Advance your business skills with bachelor’s or master’s degree

In this ad, the “pointing” element takes the main stage. With the cleanliness of the model’s clothes, his centering in the frame, and his hand gestures pointing to titles *to the beat* – there’s no way the viewer can take their eyes off.

3. Impress your friends!

This ad is not only aesthetically pleasing but also well-lit and features the product in the center of the frame. The critical element here is the VO and subtitles running through the ad.

Get Ready for Part 2: “Using The Rules To Break The Rules” – Coming Soon!

We’re excited to announce that Part 2 of our thought-provoking blog post series is on its way. Stay tuned for an insightful exploration of how we can harness the rules to break free from their limitations and elevate our creative endeavors.

While you eagerly await the release of Part 2, we invite you to explore our extensive collection of success stories. Discover firsthand how we have helped businesses like yours achieve outstanding results through our innovative approaches. Should you require further information or have any inquiries, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us.
Our dedicated team is here to assist you every step of the way.

Prepare to be inspired as we continue our journey of breaking boundaries and pushing the limits of what’s possible in the world of creative storytelling. Stay tuned for Part 2, coming soon!

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