When creatives present their ideas – either to clients or internally – we sometimes show a video clip as a point of reference. It might be to establish a mood, a look, a technique, anything.
But here’s my warning:
Don’t ever use someone else’s ad to set up your idea.
Think about it. Do you really want to set up your idea by showing a really awesome Nike ad? Or a Jeep spot? Or an Apple commercial?
Whether you mean to or not, you’re basically saying, “Our idea isn’t 100% original. But here’s a really cool ad we wish we’d done and want to rip off.”
It doesn’t matter if you’re presenting ideas for butter and you’re using a car commercial as a reference. It’s still telegraphs “not fresh” to the entire room. It says, “We want to be at least as good as this ad…but no better.”
Go ahead and use a documentary segment to establish a tone. Use a YouTube video to give a sense of energy. A film clip to help explain a technique. Do whatever you can to help the people in the room catch a vision of your idea.
But no matter how strong the temptation, don’t use someone else’s ad to show what you want your ad to be like.