Doubting the power of video ads at this point is like sealing your fate to failure. If one-third of advertising investment is now allocated to this type of ad, it's for a simple reason: these contents increasingly connect better with audiences. If they are well-told stories, the success is even greater. Do you know how you can harness all that potential? By writing a script for your app ads.
If you have never faced this creative challenge before, you can rest assured. Advertising experts and audiovisual producers know the path to writing effective scripts, combining creativity with a functional structure. You can follow this path to produce creative content that achieves engagement and truly converts.
Why write a script for your app ads? The answer lies in demanding work.
Behind that film you enjoyed so much, that ad you remember despite the years, that series you faithfully follow, or the video of your favorite influencer, there is a script. None of those pieces would have come to light if the roadmap to bring the story that a creative had in their mind to life had not been written first.
In simple terms, a script is a document that schematically, coherently, and articulately captures the elements with which an audiovisual story will be constructed. It helps directors, producers, video editors, and the talent that will appear on camera to understand and execute that proposal under the same guidance.
A good script also helps in directing work in three stages: pre-production, the stage to plan and organize the recording of scenes that will be used in the video; production, the actual recording moment, and post-production, focused on video editing of the material produced. This way, it is possible to anticipate the necessary resources and estimate costs.
Scripts are also useful for programmatic advertising.
Audiovisual production and advertising have a special relationship. The campaigns of major brands almost always have audiovisual pieces rotating on different platforms. For that reason, the execution of any advertising plan involves the production of scripts based on defined concepts for the positioning of products, goods, or services.
In the case of programmatic advertising, that link still exists. The characteristics of mobile applications, marked by transmedia and multimedia language, make them an ideal territory to experiment beyond static banners. For that reason, interactive formats and videos play a key role in connecting with audiences.
This reality is embraced by premium advertisers willing to invest in the production of audiovisual pieces as long as they guarantee a higher Return on Investment (ROI). It is also embraced by publishers who adapt their ad inventory to incorporate video ads and promote their own developments.
What should a script have? Does the same format work for any audiovisual piece?
At this point, the relevance of including video ads in any strategy to promote your mobile application is clear. But how do you write a script? What should it have to be a complete and effective action plan? Are there parameters for creating one?
Fortunately, recognized and shared standards exist for those who create this type of content. Essentially, it is about skillfully interweaving stories and defining technical criteria to write with clarity and precision.
Technique and story combine in a good script.
When writing a good script, including those for your app ads, you must accurately present the story you want to tell. Indicate how it starts, develops, and concludes. In this structure, it is vital to specify the characters, actions, and dialogues involved in your narrative in the proposed order.
In addition to the narrative, it is essential to specify the technical aspects that must be considered in the video production. Types of shots, image sequences, animations, and inserts must be clear to the production team.
When the story and technical aspects are well-detailed, it is much easier to produce the audiovisual material. Additionally, it is much easier to anticipate the investment required to achieve the proposed goal.
Is there a single format for writing a script?
To think that there is only one would be foolish. Just as advertising evolves, so does audiovisual production. Therefore, rather than a single format, there are some basic considerations for writing a script, even for in-app ads.
In general, a script includes:
#1. General information about the video to be produced: client or advertiser's name, recording date, and production responsibilities.
#2. Two columns of information: on the left, technical notes necessary for video production. Images or animations, types of shots, inserts, and other relevant aspects. On the right, dialogues or texts that should accompany the images.
Although this format exists, it is also possible to write literary scripts (including only dialogues and narratives) and technical audiovisual scripts (which gather all the instructions for producing the required images for the ad).
#3. Approximate duration of the material: it is essential to respect the timing of scenes, shots, and overall narratives.
There may be variations, but in general, a script encompasses all these aspects. If it doesn't, it is very difficult for a technical and artistic team to bring the proposal to life successfully, at a reasonable cost, and within the planned timeframe.
Platforms also set the pace for script development.
Writing a script without first considering where the video will be displayed is like sowing in the sea. You must consider the characteristics of mobile applications and their frequent use by the target audience.
With this information, you will have a clearer idea of how to plan the sequence of images and the duration of the ad. In that sense, advertising networks have certain standards that you must consider to have the possibility of placing the ad without issues.
Additionally, study the most common usage patterns of those mobile applications where you want the video to be seen. If you have a video game and want to promote it in other apps, you should think about a playful narrative. If it's a productivity app, the video should be sober while maintaining the tone of efficiency and performance that the user seeks.
Step by step: How to write your in-app ad script.
Now that you know the value of videos as an advertising tool and the requirements for producing them, it's time to sit down and write your script. Although it may seem like a tough task at first, when you combine creativity, programmatic advertising, and audiovisual production, ideas will flow as if you were a professional.
#1 Identify the strengths and advantages of your application.
The starting point for writing a script is conceiving the idea and defining a purpose. In the case of programmatic advertising, the general objective is to position a product or service. Particularly, it is about promoting your application; therefore, you must be clear about what you aim to achieve with the ad.
For this task, have a clear understanding of the advantages and benefits of your application. Why is it worth using? What features distinguish you from your competitors? What does a user gain by downloading your app? Based on these ideas, you can start brainstorming until you find the story you need.
#2 Know your audience: How do they connect with stories?
When you are clear about the advantage of your application that you want to promote, you are ready to take the next step: considering the tone of your story. That will depend primarily on the characteristics of the users you want to reach and the general purpose of your ad.
If you want to connect with young users, you need to evaluate how they consume videos. Where do they do it? What formats do they watch the most? How many seconds does it take for them to decide whether to continue watching an ad or move on? By finding answers to these questions, you build a profile to guide your script effectively.
#3 Explore trends in video ad production for mobile applications.
Venturing into an ad without knowing the most successful trends is a risk. At this point, it's not about copying, blindly following patterns, or replicating your competition. That would be a grave mistake! The purpose is to know what is working and use that knowledge as a starting point for unleashing your creativity.
When you study the main trends and see how they can benefit you, you pave the way for creating content with your own touch. Even if you want to innovate, you must first understand how successful app ads work.
#4 Let's create! Sit down and write your app ad script.
You know the advantage you want to promote about your application, you know your audience, and you know the types of video ads that work best. It's time to activate the creativity of your team and start writing your script.
At this point, make use of storytelling tools, the art of telling effective and engaging stories. You can employ tools that appeal to the emotions, needs, and expectations of the audience you want to reach.
Storytelling experts also have some categories of stories that can work to promote your application. If it's new in the app stores, you can consider narratives that introduce who you are or how your development works.
I have a clear idea, how do I describe it perfectly?
Construct your script scene by scene, with detailed descriptions, dialogues, or texts that should appear in each one. Also, decide which elements of your application you want to showcase. All of this should be mixed with the sequence of beginning, development, and climax.
Follow this scheme with a clear objective: to engage your user and lead them to a specific action. The beginning of your video should have the necessary appeal to keep them watching. It can be a question, an action that arouses curiosity, or any other idea that creates a connection.
The development of your video should maintain engagement and showcase that special feature of your application that you want to promote, with agility and speed. Generate tension and excitement to conclude with a call to action. In that case, it can be "Download now," "Sign up now," or "Subscribe now."
Speak to your users as if you were one of them.
When writing the script for your app ads, think as if you were the user you want to reach. How do they speak? What do they like? What do they seek in mobile applications? What is believable to them? When you put yourself in their shoes, your ideas will be more accurate.
#5 Verify the parameters set by advertising networks.
Each network has its parameters in terms of video duration, formats, video file size in megabytes (MB), screen dimensions, and image usage. For example, IronSource or Unity Ads require the inclusion of interactive content within the creatives.
Also, avoid including images in your video that are prohibited by advertising networks. Many of them do not allow the use of violent images or misleading information.
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