What can you learn from Alfred Hitchcock?


A Brand needs a plan. Some are very long and complicated, others very concise, even simple – I am yet to be convinced that length, long or short, has any co-relation with quality, but that is for another time. A brand plan makes it clear for everyone what we want to achieve and how we are going to do it.

This is very similar to a Film Director’s script. The script not only has the actors lines and stage directions but also directions for lighting, camera angles, props… Everyone knows exactly what they have to do, when and how.

But Hitchcock always had two scripts. He had the Shooting Script which was the one that told everyone what they had to do and when. He also had his “Director’s Script”. The Director’s Script was Hitchcock’s plan of the emotional journey that he was taking the audience on. Here they will be relaxed and calm, here we will build the suspense, then we will reassure and calm them down again, NOW we drop them off the edge of the cliff, shock or terrify them…

Hitchcock was “The Master of Suspense” supreme at sucking his audience in, involving them in the film, delivering an experience that was not to be forgotten. But this did not happen by accident. He understood that in order to do this he needed to have not only a great story and great actors, but that he needed to plan and perfectly execute the viewers emotional journey from the beginning of the film all the way through to the end. Hitchcock knew it was not just about the delivery of certain key scenes, it was about the build-up to these scenes and how the journey continues afterwards. He planned his viewers’ emotional journey in meticulous detail, he knew what he wanted to achieve in each scene and how he was going to achieve it. And this was what was written in his Green Script.

Now your Brand Plan – long or short – may be brilliant, but do you articulate every stage of your consumers’ emotional journey with your brand? Are you orchestrating this journey? Do you know how to really draw your consumers in, to deliver an experience that they will never forget and come back for again and again?

We help global companies such as PepsiCo, Nestlé, GSK, P&G, Unilever, Barclays Bank understand their Consumers Emotional Journeys. We give them their Green Scripts.