The Power of the Friday Funny: Using Humour To Build Your Brand
Entrepreneurs are right in being scared to use humour within marketing. Making a joke is a risk, and if you can’t pull off a punchline in real life how are you meant to do it in front of a large network of clients?
Yet like most things in life, taking a risk almost always pays off. Integrating humour within your content marketing – particularly on your social media channels – can draw impressive attention to your content and put your brand on the digital map.
Not only can light-hearted content be used to reposition the spotlight, it’s also a universal communicator; from celebrities to small businesses, everyone who values great branding is using humour to build that vital link between what you offer and what your next customer needs.
If you want people talking about your brand, why not get them laughing? Humour gives people something in common and lets your audience see past your brand front to the real people who run it.
Here’s a list of some brands that we think have nailed the punchline.
The much-loved president of the USA regularly contributes to his own social media feeds, keeping his followers in stitches and secretly making us Australians wish we had him as our President (is there a better example of successfully promoting your personal brand?).
Amongst romantic announcements to the First Lady and inspiring opinions on gay marriage, President Obama has mastered the art of using humour to build his brand.
We think it’s a combination of well-staged photos, witty quips and hilarious GIFS that has Obama tickling the funny bone of his target audience.
Even in the most serious of careers – no one can resist a leader or a leading brand who can make fun of themselves.
— Barack Obama (@BarackObama) September 26, 2015
Despite the age-old stereotype of police officers having a poor sense of humour (outside of The Simpsons), the Queensland Police Service and their impressive 600K following on Facebook are managing to keep relatively banal notices and safety warnings on people’s radar.
The QPS’ social media success shows how the routine transfer of brand announcements and everyday information can become engaging and vivacious with the right dose of humour.
Between adorable police dog posts and dangerous road warnings, the QPS have found the perfect balance between attracting a crowd and delivering important information directly. Lesson learnt: know when to be funny, and when to be informative.
Whoever is responsible for updating their social media was definitely a content marketer in another life. Or potentially in their current one.
The childhood (and yes, maybe the adulthood) favourite. Whoever is behind Skittles’ brand marketing have managed to bring new life and better humour to an already much-loved product. Skittles are one of the few already-established brands that have reinvented themselves with the introduction of social media and online marketing.
Obviously they’ve gone for a bit more classic ‘Dad’ humour than witty quips, but they’ve shown they know their market.
With 300k followers on Twitter, humour is key in Skittles transferring their fun-loving brand identity to an online forum.
Featured in Time Magazine’s article on “sassiest brands on Twitter”, the cologne brand Old Spice has got humorous marketing down pat. Unlike QPS, there’s not much that is serious about Old Spice on social media. Yet, they still know their market.
They’ve also broken into Imgur, with the brand having an almost cult following on the image sharing website.
From world leaders to confectionary brands, every marketer can benefit from the right dose of humour in their content creation. Approachability trumps intimidating authority, so take the risk and deliver the punchline!