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Lights, Camera, Action!

4th May 2021

It is now less than a month until our media skills competition, which asks 14-16 year olds to create an advert that changes behaviours and attitudes towards littering in young adults, closes. So we thought we’d give you some expert tips on how to make an award-winning anti-littering advert.

These tips are for those of you who are thinking of creating a TV advert or a social media video.

Let’s get started – lights, camera, action!

Tip 1: Understand the brief

Make sure you understand exactly what you are being asked to do. Are you clear who your intended audience is? What do you want your them to know? What do you want them to feel? And what do you want them to do? Being able to answer these questions will help ensure your advert will capture the attention of someone your own age and inspire them to change their behaviour.

Tip 2: Have a clear message throughout your advert

It is important to think about what you are trying to say to your audience and how you can say it in an engaging way. Start by thinking about which adverts capture your attention. Why do they stick out? Is the messaging short, funny, sad, or maybe it’s the image that sticks with you?

Tip 3: Grab their attention in the first 5 seconds

Netflix has found that people decide whether they’re going to keep watching a show within the first 5 seconds of clicking play. Ever wondered why so many shows start with a teaser, or an opening scene that gives viewers a taste of the show’s central character, conflict, and world – well that’s why.  So, make those opening 5 seconds count! You could do this by using a shocking fact about the problem of litter in your area, inspire emotion or letting images speak for you.

Tip 4: Keep them hooked

Now you have captured their attention, you need to keep them hooked with an engaging storyline. There are many ways to do this, but the best thing you can do to start with is plan. It might be a good idea to plot out each shot in a storyboard and even write a script.

Tip 5: Keep it short and tell the audience how they can get involved

Summarise your message towards the end of your advert to refocus the audience. You can recap the main points or arguments you’ve covered and reinforce what’s important for the audience to take away from your advert. Then create closure, a sense of finality. You might end on the same thing your advert opened with, or you could lay down a challenge and look to the future.

Tip 6: Enjoy making your advert!

Bin It! is all about having fun while learning, so be sure to share your project with us by tagging @BinItEducation on Twitter and using #BinItMediaSkills!