Sanka Academy

A Comprehensive Guide: How to Plan and Create a Commercial Film


Last Update: Dec. 17, 2023


Commercial films are a creative and effective way to boost a brand's visibility, promote products or services, and connect with a vast and varied audience.

They are a blend of art and science, balancing storytelling and marketing strategies.

Embarking on the journey of creating a commercial film takes careful planning, creative vision, and thorough understanding.

Here's how to plan and execute a compelling commercial film.

#1 The Pre-production Stage

Step 1: Set the Goals

The very first step is to outline the objective and goals of your film. Whether it's to increase brand awareness, reveal a new product line, or drive traffic to a website, the objective will be a significant driving force dictating the film's concept, medium, length, message, and target audience.

Step 2: Define Your Target Audience

As mentioned in Step 1, the target audience has a considerable influence on the elements of your commercial film. Factors such as age, gender, interests, and cultural backgrounds come under consideration. Understanding these demographics will help you appeal to your target audience effectively.

Step 3: Create a Budget

Determine a budget that covers all costs, including pre-production, production, and post-production. Factor in costs like scriptwriting, location fees, production crew, talent, equipment rent, catering, transportation, post-production, and marketing. It doesn't have to be an exact number at this stage, but having a ballpark figure can help guide your decisions.

Step 4: Craft the Message & Build the Story

Start by brainstorming and developing a unique and creative idea to convey your message. Ensure the concept aligns with your brand's tone and target audience. Next, write the script to tell your story effectively and compellingly. If you're not a writer, it's wise to bring in a professional screenwriter who can collaborate and develop an engaging story with you.

Step 5: Assemble the Production Team

Put together a team of professionals and creatives to bring your vision to life. Essential roles include the director, cinematographer, producer, screenwriter, and actors. It's also crucial to consider supporting roles, such as the art director, sound engineer, costume designer, makeup artist, and location manager.

Step 6: Dive into Pre-Production

During the pre-production process, you'll work on storyboards, shot lists, location scouting, casting, and production schedules. Here are a few essential tasks:

  • Storyboard: A sequence of sketches outlining every shot in the film. They guide you through the visual development of the film, ensuring clear communication with the cinematographer and the entire crew.
  • Shot List: Each scene has to be meticulously planned out beforehand. By creating a shot list, you'll have a clear outline of camera positions, angles, and movements to make your shoot more efficient and organized.
  • Location Scouting: Research and visit locations that align with your script requirements. Consider aspects such as lighting, noise levels, permits, and accessibility.
  • Casting: Find the perfect actors to bring your characters to life. They need to embody the spirit of the brand and connect with your target audience. Hold auditions or collaborate with talent agencies to find the suitable talent.
  • Production Schedule: Create a detailed shooting schedule that outlines daily tasks and activities during the shoot. This should include location changes, crew call times, and shooting times.

#2 The Production Stage

Step 1: Production Design

The production design involves creating the look and feel of the film set, including props, costumes, and makeup, depending on the requirements of the script. Collaborate with the art director, set designer, and costume designer to ensure every element matches your film's visual tone.

Step 2: Prepare Your Gear

Having the proper gear is essential for the production process. Consider cameras, lenses, tripods, lighting equipment, and sound equipment. Research and rent the right tools depending on your budget and production needs.

Step 3: Focused Rehearsals

Rehearsals benefit the entire team by making all the members familiar with their roles and expected actions. Actors can refine their lines and movements, the camera crew can practice framing and shot compositions, and the director can make adjustments to the scene or blocking as needed.

Step 4: Shoot the Film

The shooting stage is the most intense and time-consuming phase of production. With a well-prepared plan, a dedicated team, and effective communication, you can shoot the film smoothly and efficiently.

  • Set the Scene: Ensure all technical elements, like lighting, camera placement, and props, are ready before starting a shot.
  • Keep Track of Shots: Record each take and note the best takes—this will help during the editing process.
  • Maintaining Continuity: Ensure consistency between shots, such as costume, makeup, props, and weather.

#3 The Post-production Stage

Step 1: Film Editing

Film editing is a crucial step in creating a seamless flow of the story. Review the footage, select the best takes, and arrange them in a logical sequence. Popular editing software includes Adobe Premiere Pro, Final Cut Pro, Avid Media Composer, and DaVinci Resolve.

Step 2: Color Grading

Manipulate colors and tones to enhance the film's visual mood and style. Whether you want to create a specific look or enhance existing footage, consider using professional color grading tools available in most editing software.

Step 3: Sound Design

The sound designer enhances the film's auditory experience by adding background scores, sound effects, and adjusting audio levels. Good quality sound makes your film even more engaging.

Step 4: Gather Feedback and Make Adjustments

Before finalizing your film, gather feedback from your team, stakeholders, and a selected focus group. Fresh perspectives can help identify areas for improvement or polishing.

Step 5: Distribution and Promotion

With the finished commercial in hand, it's time to share it with the world. The distribution strategies will vary depending on the platform, be it Television, Cinema, Social Media, or Online platforms. Good promotion ensures the commercial film reaches its target audience and achieves its goals.

Recommended Tools to Plan and Create a Commercial Film

From pre-production planning to post-production editing, there are a myriad of essential tools that can aid in this process.

Whether you're a seasoned filmmaker or a beginner, here are some must-have tools that will help you breathe life into your vision.

Pre-Production Tools

  1. Final Draft: This is a popular scriptwriting software known for its intuitive interface and industry-standard formatting options. Final Draft simplifies the process of writing, making it a highly recommended tool for creating memorable dialogues and remarkable scenes.
  2. Celtx: Celtx is a comprehensive pre-production tool that allows you to write scripts, create storyboards and shot lists, schedule your shoot, and even breakdown your script into production costs. It is web-based, allowing for real-time collaboration with your team.
  3. StudioBinder: A cloud-based pre-production software, StudioBinder is excellent for managing shooting schedules, call sheets, storyboards, and scripts. It allows different team members to stay connected and coordinated during the pre-production phase.
  4. Shot Designer: This app helps to plan camera and character movements within a scene. With the help of the diagrams, the communication between the director and the cameraman becomes much easier.

Production Tools

  1. Digital Cameras: Selecting the right camera is a crucial decision. Whether you choose a professional cinema camera like those from ARRI and RED or digital SLR cameras from Canon and Nikon, ensures you get the right tool that fits your budget and needs.
  2. Tripods and Rigs: For steady and smooth camera movement, tripods and stabilizers are must-haves. Brands like Manfrotto, DJI Ronin and Joby GorillaPod are popular for their robust design and versatility.
  3. Lighting Equipment: Lighting can dramatically affect the look and mood of your film. Consider using various types of lights such as key lights, fill lights, backlights, softboxes, or reflectors to create the desired lighting setup.
  4. Sound Equipment: Good quality audio is equally important in film production. Essential audio gear includes shotguns and lavalier microphones like those offered by Sennheiser and Rode. Additionally, consider audio recorders like the Zoom H series.
  5. Portable Monitors: A good monitor is crucial for reviewing shots on location. Atomos’ line of portable monitors are high quality with numerous inputs and recording options.

Post-Production Tools

  1. Adobe Premiere Pro: An industry-standard tool for video editing, Adobe Premiere Pro offers powerful editing features, color grading options, and audio enhancement capabilities.
  2. Final Cut Pro: Exclusively for Mac users, Final Cut Pro provides proficient tools for editing, sound design, graphics, and delivery. Its Magnetic Timeline feature improves flexibility and control over the editing process.
  3. Avid Media Composer: Avid is a strong industry contender, favored by professionals. It has advanced editing tools, 3D effects capability and is perfect for larger and high-resolution projects.
  4. DaVinci Resolve: Free for basic use with an optional paid version, DaVinci Resolve combines editing, color correction, visual effects, motion graphics, and audio post-production in one tool.
  5. Adobe After Effects: Useful for adding visual effects to your footage, Adobe After Effects is a powerful tool for graphic animation and compositing.

The process becomes much smoother and effective when you're equipped with the right tools. With an investment in these recommended tools, your journey from pre-production to distribution can be more organized, efficient, and productive.


Creating a commercial film involves careful planning and execution, blending storytelling and marketing strategies in an appealing way.

The journey might seem daunting, but with the right preparation, communication, and creative vision, you can certainly turn your conceptual thoughts into a compelling commercial film.

In addition, the process becomes much smoother and effective when you're equipped with the right tools.

With an investment in these recommended tools, your journey from pre-production to distribution can be more organized, efficient, and productive.

Stay dedicated, stay organized, and always be open to learning new tricks of the trade to achieve success in the world of commercial filmmaking.

Mastering IT Cost Reduction: Definition, Importance, and Strategies Digital Transformation Strategy: A Practical Tips Digital Transformation Examples and Case Studies Digital Transformation for Small Businesses: Leaping Into the Future AI Chatbots : A Comprehensive Guide Newsletter Automation: The Key to Your Content Marketing Success Community Engineering: A Complete Guide A Beginner’s Guide to a Social Media Strategy Mastering Twitter Automation - Super Effective Ways Maximizing Success: The Ultimate Guide to Compound Startups SaaS Localization: 7 Strategies to Successfully Localization Your Software Products A Beginner’s Guide to Community-Led Growth What Is a BOM? The Key to Streamlining Your Manufacturing Process The Ultimate Guide to Crafting Effective Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) Discord Management Complete Guide Maximize Business Efficiency with Enterprise Resource Planning Generative AI Marketing A Beginner’s Guide to Community Management Why ITAM Matters: A Guide to Effectively Managing Your IT Assets Reskilling Your Workforce: A How-to for Companies The Top 11 Attendance Tracking Tools to Monitor Your Team's Attendance YouTube Affiliate Marketing: What It Is and How to Get Started 12 Best Project Management Tools/Software You Should Know About The Top 10 Service (SaaS) Management Tools The Top 12 Work Management Software to Streamline Your Work The 11 Best CRM Tools: A Comprehensive Overview The Top 13 Email Marketing Tools to Enhance Your Email Campaigns Top 10 IT Asset Management Tools in 2023 A guide to Social Media Automation and 5 Key Benefits The Best Asia Marketing Agencies: Leaders in the Industry Maximize Efficiency with Social Media Publishing Automation Social Media Bots: How to Accelerate Business Growth Boost Your Profits: ERP Small Business Solutions Explained Mastering the Art of Advertising in Japan: Key Strategies and Tips 5 Essential Facebook Automation Strategies to Grow Your Business Maximize Your Business Growth with Instagram Automation Tips Understanding Consumer Behavior in Japan: Key Insights Master Ecommerce Translation: Boost Global Sales Today Mastering SEO in Japan: Boost Your Business with Tips and Tricks Discord Scheduled Posts for Efficient Communication Unleashing the Potential of SEO Asia: Strategies for Success 8 Marketing Automation Tools to Grow Your Business CRM and Digital Experience (DX): The Road to Digitalizing Customer Relationships ROAS Mastery: How to Get the Most From Your Ad Spend [With stats] 4 surprising benefits of community management Cloud-Based CRM: Harnessing the Power of the Cloud for Customer Relationships SaaS Management Platforms: How to Simplify Operations and Save Time The Best Instagram Analytics Tools to Radicaly Improve Your Account Management A Beginner’s Guide to Community Membership Management E-Commerce in Asia: The landscape and why it's growing so fast 11 Ways to Improve Conversion Rates on Social Media How to Create an Effective E-Commerce Management Process Onboarding and Organizing New Employees Workflow Top 5 Automation Tools for Social Media to Boost Your Business A Guide to Social Media Customer Service: Strategies and Best Practices for Success What is community? It’s about people and their relationships. The Social Media Best Practices for Fashion Brands Empowering Customer Service: The Top 11 Help Desk Software A Complete Guide to Social Media Content Social Listening Guide: What is "social listening"? A thorough explanation from methods to successful case studies. The Art of Decision-Making: A Comprehensive Guide to Business Choices Google Analytics to Monitor Social Media Traffic Mastering Influencer Marketing on Instagram: A Comprehensive Guide Write Code and Push to GitHub Workflow Getting Started With Localization Automation: A Beginner's Guide SEO Automaiton 101 - Get ranked higher quickly Top Social Media Management Agencies in Asia to Boost Your Brand Create a Website Page Using WordPress: A Comprehensive Guide The Power of Integration: The Best 11 iPaaS Tools E-Learning Tools: A Comprehensive Guide to the Top Solutions Introduction to Affiliate Marketing 10 Best Sales Force Automation Tools to Escalate Your Sales Process What Is Kanban? Understanding the Kanban Methodology and Principles The 10 Best Cloud Cost Management Tools: A Definitive List The 10 Best Employee Training Software Solutions for Your Team 8 Marketing Strategies to Grow Business in Asia The 10 Best Sales Analysis Software Tools for Your Business Top 10 Workflow Management Tools: Features, Pros and Cons Top 10 Social Media Listening Software: Features, Pros & Cons The 10 Best Influencer Marketing Tools and Why You Need Them ROI of Automation Tools: Low Cost & High Reward? The Top List of Digital Transformation Platforms The Ultimate List of the Top Customer Data Platforms 7 Examples of Popular Online Communities Mastering the Sales Order Process Workflow: A Comprehensive Guide Top 10 Social Media Marketing Tools Every Marketer Should Know Unlock the Power of Social Media: Tips for Instagram Highlight How to Manage Employee Leave Requests Using Google Calendar What Are Twitter Threads? Understanding the Basics Unlock the Power of LinkedIn Automation to Transform Your Profile The Rise of Emotion AI: What You Need to Know The Ultimate Guide to Optimizing Your Business Through Workflow Mapping Embracing the Future with Digital Transformation in Manufacturing The Workflow Efficiency Blueprint: A Step-by-Step Process for Optimizing How You Work Digital Transformation Failures and Lessons Learned Mastering Internal Auditing: A Comprehensive Guide A Comprehensive Guide: How to Plan and Create a Commercial Film Mastering the Art of Document Approval Management How to Run Effective NFT Marketing Campaigns: Best Practices and Case Studies A Look at Digital Transformation KPIs in Enterprises Master the Expense and Reimbursement Process with QuickBooks: A Comprehensive Guide AI Marketing - The Complete Guide Crafting Effective Email Marketing Strategies for Abandoned Cart Workflow Streamline Your Processes with Workflow Templates: 8 Examples and Step-by-Step Guides Mastering International Marketing: Strategies for Global Success The community management process: A Step by Step Guide A Comprehensive Guide to Creating and Setting Google Ads Creating the Ideal Workflow for Software Development: A Step-by-Step Guide Manage a Webinar Using Zoom Workflow: A Comprehensive Guide The Power of Automation: How Social Media Auto-Publishing Tools Benefit Your Business Top Social Selling Tools to Boost Your Sales Strategy The Best Community Management Tools to Build an Engaged Audience Comprehensive Guide to Creating Instagram Ad Campaigns The Ultimate Guide to Creating a Brand Community Simplified Guide to Creating and Setting Up Facebook Ads Definitive Guide to Tracking Software and Application Bugs Mastering Mailchimp: A Comprehensive Guide to Sending Marketing Emails Mastering Digital Marketing in Japan: Tips and Strategies Mastering Digital Marketing in Asia: Essential Strategies & Tips Mastering Instagram: How to Create and Publish an Effective Marketing Campaign Step-by-Step A Comprehensive Guide to Tracking and Managing Manufacturing Production Workflow Top Influencers for Web3 Marketing How to Recruit and Educate the Best Talent to Drive Digital Transformation Leveraging CRM in Marketing: Enhancing Customer Relationships & Boosting Business Performance CRM, MA, and SFA: Understanding the Difference and Their Importance Digital Transformation in Healthcare: Enhancing Patient Care and Operational Efficiency Embracing Digital Experience at Your Work Embracing the Future: Digital Transformation in the Banking Industry What Is Workflow Automation and Why You Need It Maximize Your Business Potential with LinkedIn Analytics Social Media ROI - How to justify the spend Top 10 Quotes About Artificial Intelligence from Influential Business Leaders Digital Transformation (DX) for Sales: Embracing Innovation for Business Success Digital Journey: The Transformation of the Travel Industry Pioneering Change: The Digital Transformation in Local Governments Digital Transformation in Real Estate: Uncovering the Opportunities and Challenges The Future of HR: Unleashing the Power of Digital Transformation in Human Resources The Ultimate Guide to Mastering Social Media Marketing Blockchain Communities: What Are They? And Why You Should Build One A Deep Dive into Cloud Migration: Embracing the Future of Business Why Sales Enablement Matters: How to Empower Your Sales Team to Close More Deals 10 examples of well-run brand communities: everything you need to know Unlocking the Secrets of Successful Branding in Japan AI Marketing Strategy: How to Develop an Effective Plan Exploring Social Media in Japan: Trends and Opportunities Mastering Influencer Marketing: Proven Strategies for Success A Comprehensive Guide to Managing Initial Patient Intake and Treatment Mapping E-commerce Rebate Campaign Process: A Step by Step Guide What is Corporate SNS? Understand the Benefits and Tips for Greater Results! Mastering Twitter Analytics: Your Ultimate Guide to Understanding and Leveraging Twitter Data Everything You've Wanted to Know About Web3 Marketing Workflow Optimization: How to Achieve More by Doing Less Define, Automate, Optimize: A Comprehensive Guide to Email Marketing Workflows Why and How to Expand Your Startup to the Asian Market Comprehensive Understanding of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Best Talent Management Software: A Comprehensive Review of the Top Solutions Boost Workplace Efficiency: Top 10 Employee Productivity Tracking Software Cultural Marketing 101 - how to run business in different countries with different culture Influence Engineering Explained: What, Why and How A guide to Social PR The Comprehensive Guide to Workflow: A Key to Optimized Business Operations Mastering Project and Task Management with Notion: A Detailed Guide Top SEO Agencies in Asia: Boost Your Business Growth The Best Discord Analytics Tools to Track Server Stats Mastering Canva: Simplifying the Presentation Creation Process Digital Transformation in Insurance - Revolutionizing the Industry Landscape The Digital Transformation in the Retail Industry Mastering Global E-Commerce: How to Build a Successful Global E-commerce Business AI Marketing Tools: Revolutionizing the Future of Digital Advertising Unleashing Digital Transformation in Supply Chain Management and Logistics Embrace the Future: Digital Transformation (DX) in Accounting The Comprehensive Guide to YouTube Automation: Unlock the Power to Streamline Your Channel's Growth The Beginner's Guide to Mastering Workflow Management AI in Marketing: A Deep Dive into Fortune 500 Companies What Is a Workflow Chart? The Ultimate Guide to Streamlining Your Process What Is PLM? An In-Depth Look at Product Lifecycle Management What Is a Workflow Plan and How to Write One The Definitive Guide to Workflow Analysis The Benefits of AI Marketing Explained Community Growth: Growing and optimizing your community size Workflow Approval: A Comprehensive Guide to Increased Efficiency Community Management vs Social Media Management How to build a thriving DeFi x NFT community like sudoswap Everything You Need to Know About Product Data Management A Beginner’s Guide to Social Media Engagement

There's a better way to
run your ecommerce.

From Marketing to Customer Service.
Everything you need to grow ecommerce.
One subscription. Unlimited accounts.

Start Free

Contact us for more information.

Free Trial and Demo
Dedicated Support
Estimates & Quotes
Spec & Tool Selection
Data migration
Development & Consulting