Tension changes minds.
You need tension to change behavior or spread an idea. A presence and absence. A subtle homage. The song that ends on the off beat.
The ‘what could be’ of possibility.
Tension creates emotion and a need to fill it. It could be purchasing a product, closing the deal, clicking for more, or walking through the door. The reason is possibility.
Spielberg saved the full shot of the great white shark for late in the series. He let you imagine something far scarier than he could’ve made. (It was a mistake he made into magic).
Charlie Brown’s teacher, and other adults you never see.
Answering the headline at the end of a post.
The silence after, “Do you want fries with that?”
Tensions starts with what you don’t show and ends with the outcome you hope someone will take.
But if you take a wrong turn or go too far, the tension snaps. The magic disappears…
Perhaps you’re getting it wrong because you’re under delivering on a promise, or not releasing the tension right, OR you’re asking the audience to smell the food instead of taste it.