3 rules for using humor in marketing

Humor is like horseradish: Used sparingly and in the right context, it can spice things up. But you don’t want too much of it—especially in your hot cocoa.

Humor can be a great way to break through the noise. It triggers an emotional response from your audience, which makes funny messages memorable. Think about your own experience: We can all recall a particularly amusing marketing message. It also creates brand personality, which helps customers relate to you on a human level.

Incorporating humor into marketing can be tricky. Laughs are great, but what you really want are sales. Let’s break down the most effective ways to play it for laughs without losing sight of the end goal.

1. DON’T be controversial

Social media, videos, and other brand content like your website can all be appropriate places to inject humor and show a little personality. However, don’t let that personality become offensive or polarizing.

Your goal is to get people to remember your business or brand for what you can offer them, not for your views on something that has nothing to do with your product or service.

2. DO bear your wider marketing goals in mind

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