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Commercials on Your Resume

Marigrace writes in:

I’ve been working as a post-production assistant at the same post production facility for a little over a year. This house specializes in advertising post-production, so I’ve worked on a ton of commercials this past year.

I’m wondering how to list this on my resume. I’m not sure if I should list every single campaign (or the most significant campaigns) I’ve worked on, because the company and producer would be the same for every line and would seem repetitive . Or should I simply list “Post-Production House, start date-present” and elaborate on the brands I’ve worked on?

This might fall under resume-building advice, so I’m not sure if you can shell out your knowledge for free on this one.

I’m nothing if not a bad business woman. You’d think I would’ve found a way to make a living off this blog, after all these years. So, yes, I’ll give you this advice for free.

A production resume is just a list of credits. Usually, the three columns would be your title, the show’s title, and the production company/studio/network.1

Commercials are a little different, for the very reason you stated. It’s good to have some repetition in that right-hand column, because it shows people like you enough to hire you repeatedly.

But if that’s all you have, it seems like you lucked into a position, and never worked anywhere else. Even worse, they might assume that you’re so used to working for that company and doing things the way they do them, you might be rather inflexible.2

So, instead of listing the company, list the clients. McDonald’s, Ford, Tom’s Diner, whatever. Big or small, it doesn’t matter. You’ll get the variety you need.

As far as the “title,” if you don’t know or can’t remember what it said on the call sheet, just make something plausible. Commercials tend to have bland, descriptive name. “Friends Eating,” “Fast Car,” “It is Always Nice to See You.” No one will know the difference anyway.

Footnotes    (↩ returns to text)

  1. Whichever is most recognizable.
  2. Which is a thing that happens all the time.
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