The corporate world doesn’t have to be all stiff collars and well-ironed shirts – does it? A little fun and banter can a long way in a potentially ‘stifling’ work environment, but is humour necessarily needed when it comes to content marketing? The answer is, yes – sometimes. So, when Can Content Marketing Be Humourous?
When Not To Be Funny
As a content marketer, you can’t go all Micky Flanagan or Michael McIntyre on your audience whenever you feel like it – after all, there’s a time and place to be funny.
If you’re writing terms and conditions, for instance – don’t make jokes. This is serious content that could have legal implications if not taken seriously. Also, don’t edit real-life quotes from real-life people to make them more entertaining. This is a sure-fire way to ruffle some feathers.
When it comes to injecting humour into your content, you also need to think carefully about your brand. If cracking a joke or two means completely changing your tone of voice, will your consumers appreciate this break from tradition? Some might, but if you’re the serious face of a straight-laced corporate enterprise, you may want to carefully think through your strategy before testing a comedic approach – as it could become more of a tragedy.
When to be ‘Spit Your Tea Out’ Funny
Taking care is important, but if you’re a down to earth, fun, upbeat and quirky business with plenty of creative ideas to unleash into the world, humour could slip into your marketing strategy nicely – but beware. It’s not actually easy to be funny. You want people to chuckle not cringe, so let’s take a look at a few brands that got their comedic touch spot on.
Charmin – an American brand of toilet paper – has taken toilet humour to the next level. The brand regularly takes to Twitter to discuss issues that are somewhat uncomfortable but that many people can relate to, such as using a public bathroom (ewwww). Their tweets are honest and to the point yet hilarious at the same time.
“You’re not you when you’re hungry. Snickers satisfies.” This strap-line perfectly complements a series of humorous video ads from Snickers which showcase people acting out of the ordinary – until they’ve satisfied their tummy pangs.
So what made this campaign so successful? Well, firstly, it was funny. Secondly, the ‘you’re not you when you’re hungry’ theme had longevity with plenty of scope for creativity allowing new adverts to be released in a timely fashion to keep consumers engaged.
Who can forget the Budweiser Wassup commercial first released in 1999 (yes, it really was that long ago)? This entertaining campaign was simple yet effective and comprised of a few friends “watching the game, having a bud” – oh, and yelling “wassssssssssssssssup” at each other. It resonated with the youth of the time and became somewhat of a pop-culture phenomenon being featured on many TV shows including Scary Movie, Friends, The Simpsons and The Office.
So, how can you create laugh out loud content?
- Simple ideas work best – so don’t over complicate everything
- When running a multi-channel marketing campaign, be sure your humour is consistent
- Be bold, be different and do something which no-one else has thought of
- Know you target audience as this will help you to tailor your content appropriately
- Vary your content – think blogs, articles, videos, social posts
…and a few don’ts
- Never copy content. Rehashing old ideas will not do you any favours
- Never be rude or offensive. Avoid discrimination.
Is humour right for your brand? Speak to the Charli Says today about high-quality content marketing.