The next commercial might be funny.
This is our unanimous Super Bowl hope. We teeter off the front of the couch, we stop chewing our Buffalo wing, we hush our significant others, because nothing tops laughing as one unified America. The actual football game, the national anthem and the halftime show? These are just obstacles in the way of funny commercials.
But what if brands could tap into that demand year-round!? In an effort to encourage humorous content programs, here’s how to stay on message while marketing with a punch line.
Funny Content is Serious Business
The best part about using humor in your content program is that it’s a natural element of conversation. If we’re to believe content marketing is about having an engaging interaction with the audience, what better way to break the ice than with a joke? Once a dialogue starts to progress, avenues for levity will snowball.
Is that where leads come from? If the two sides love each other very much, yes.
Humor is as much a social lubricant in our daily lives as it is a tactic for building relationships with consumers. Exploring ways to incorporate well-placed humor into a content marketing strategy can benefit all of us, especially those working in video and social platforms.
The Web of Science database lists 6,840 published papers in a search for the emotion of fear; laughter lists 135. The reason: Positive outputs like humor and creativity are overlooked drivers of production as it relates to trust and relationships.
“[Humor] is seen as light entertainment; it’s seen as not very essential to human life,” says John Morreall, chair and professor of religious studies at William & Mary. “What I try to argue is that humor is utterly essential to human life.”
Morreall is one of the founding members of the International Society for Humor Studies (ISHS), a scholarly and professional organization dedicated to the advancement of humor research. No, really. Here’s what that research says about humor’s impact on an audience:
Humor leads to learning.
Simply put, the more memorable your content is, the more effective your campaign will be. Classroom studies are great resources to help us understand how best to present information that sticks. According to the American Psychological Association, humor produces psychological and physiological benefits that help students learn. In another study by the textbook rental service Chegg, nearly 80% of college-age kids remembered ads that made them laugh.
One of the more memorable campaigns of last year was Hewlett-Packard’s #bendtherules videos. HP had one unique selling proposition for this particular lesson plan: The HP Pavilion x360 convertible laptop transforms into a tablet. To showcase that feature, HP hired popular social influencers to star in a series of silly Vine videos.