Today is Brad’s last day at the ‘Peg. We will miss his marketing insights, artistic flair and sense of humor.
This week I was challenged to write a funny blog post. “Be spontaneous,” she said. (Thanks Jenna). While being sarcastic might be somewhat of a habit in day-to-day life, being put on the spot to come up with humorous anecdotes, especially one running 600+ words, can be difficult. This challenge got me thinking though. How does the humor we use everyday affect how we respond to, and remember, the marketing we interact with on a daily basis? And beyond that – how can we use humor in our marketing materials to enhance our client experience?
Look at the commercials we see during the Super Bowl. If we kept a tally, I would bet that the majority of those commercials have a humorous bent to them. Those companies purchased some of the most expensive time-slots of the year and then filled it with an ad designed to make the audience laugh. Why do you think that is? I’d venture to say that it’s because they understand that we (as consumers) are much more likely to remember “that one commercial” that made us laugh hysterically, than we are to remember an ad full of information about why we should buy/use their service/product. Here are some tips on how you can harness that same idea and gear it toward you.
Humor in video expands to much more than just commercials. If your co-workers are anything like mine, then you should have plenty of funny video clips to go around. You could start a short weekly or bi-weekly series that features a few of your fellow office mates doing something wacky or just having a silly conversation. YouTube states, “Every day, people watch hundreds of millions of hours on YouTube and generate billions of views.” You can take advantage of those viewers (even if your office isn’t inhabited by entertaining cats). At Roundpeg, we make sure to have a group activity every once in a while. A few weeks ago, some of us took the BeanBoozled challenge from JellyBelly. The facial expressions and gag reflexes were hilarious to watch (less fun to make). Taking a video of these types of coworker interactions is an easy way to generate followers that might never have heard of you otherwise.
Interact with your audience by hosting a funny contest. The contest doesn’t have to be about anything serious and there doesn’t necessarily even need to be a prize. The object of this contest could just be to provide an amusing “break” in the daily news feed. Not only would this help you connect with your followers, it also allows you to take a break from the “sales-y” social media posts. Ask your followers to come up with a name for the massive dust bunny you found under your desk, or take a survey of what kind of popsicles should be stocked in the freezer. Whatever it is, make it fun and easy for everyone to participate.
Next time your company rents a booth at a conference, ditch the boring pens and stress balls. It’s time to be a little more original. Handing out a unique and original promotional item may be what causes someone to remember you. Have fun with it and make people laugh. For example: Every year, as I grew up, my family would attend the Indiana State Fair. For some reason, the day we always attended was “Clown Day.” Hundreds of clowns would be swarming the fairgrounds. To this day, I still remember one particular clown and here’s why. Occasionally, he would approach a young child and say, “would you like a brownie?” Of course the child would light up with the excitement and anticipation of eating what must be a delicious, chocolate treat! Out of his bag, the clown would then pull out a baking tin, covered in foil. Under the foil, he would reveal a stack of large “E’s” cut out of brown construction paper. Here’s my point. You don’t have to get fancy or elaborate. Be clever and creative and make sure that whatever you’re doing can somehow tie back to your product or service.
There are so many ways to bring humor into your marketing. I’ve listed a few that might spark ideas, but now it’s your turn to tell me how you have used humor to promote better engagement with your audience.