What you can learn about video storytelling from the Budweiser Super Bowl commercial

I often use commercials as ways to teach journalists how to write compelling stories. Budweiser's "Puppy Love" Super Bowl commercial gives me one of the best examples of video storytelling that I have seen in years.

So let me walk you frame-by-frame through the ad. The story teaches us how to build tension, how to use the "rule of threes," how to find narrow focus and how to build to the big explosion at the end of the piece -- the payoff.

Great stories have so much in common with this commercial. They have tension, context and an explosion of action. They are highly focused and don't get distracted by characters who never pay off. You don't need music, horses or puppies to tell a story.  Stick to the fundamentals that work every time.

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    Al Tompkins

    Al Tompkins is The Poynter Institute’s senior faculty for broadcasting and online. He has taught thousands of journalists, journalism students and educators in newsrooms around the world.

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