Shoot yourself first.

Shooting a commercial for a pitch is not just costly in terms of money, it costs you in terms of people.  You will throw a couple of creative people and several producers against an effort that will ultimately prove futile.  The rest of the creative department will click into half-speed, since it appears their efforts will be overshadowed by a full-blown television advertisment shot and finished.  They’ll stop trying.

Shooting a commercial means you’ve missed the point:  the point is to sell your advertising agency, not a single television commercial.  A little film or an idea video or something, fine.  But a TV commercial that you presume the client will fall down and die for.  You’re crazy.


David Fowler created long-running advertising campaigns for Motel 6 ("We'll leave the light on for you"), BP ("Beyond Petroleum"), Fanta ("Wanta Fanta"), Claritin ("Claritin Clear") and many others. His forty-year creative career included twenty years at Ogilvy & Mather in New York, as well as stints at Goodby, Silverstein in San Francisco, Ammirati & Puris in New York and The Richards Group in Dallas.