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Should you be using humor to promote your business?

Nancy Roblewsky

Should you be using humor to promote your business?

I say yes!  Every business is constantly competing to stand out in the crowd.  This is exactly why using humor to promote your business is not only a good idea, it’s a great idea.  How to market your business is a question every business owner struggles with so let’s talk about how you can stick out like a sore thumb (and I mean that in a good way).

Humor works in advertising

Simply put, humor is one way to get people to remember you.  Why do you think so many huge corporations use it in national marketing campaigns?  It’s because it works.  When you make someone laugh or smile, they have a tendency to remember you.

If you doubt this, just think about which commercials tend to stick in your head.  Chances are it’s either ones that were funny or had some sort of jiggle or music that stuck in your head.  If you remember anything about the product or service, then it has done its job.

Make them smile

We can all agree many products or services aren’t exciting and glamorous yet they are needed.  For example, plumbing issues are usually no fun to deal with but when something happens, you want help and you want help fast.  Injecting a little humor into your website or advertising to help people deal with an unpleasant situation will often alleviate some of the stress (and that’s a good thing).

If you can make a prospective customer smile or laugh when they are dealing with a problem or trying to find an answer to their question, it increases the  chance they will contact or call you.  Studies have shown people’s emotions play a part in how they interact with a website and a positive reaction, such as making a person smile or laugh, increased the amount of time they spent on a website.  Isn’t that what you want?

Humor works to explain or educate

Many business owners struggle with explaining their products or services to potential customers or educating the public as to why their service is needed.  This is where ‘bringing the funny’ can come in handy.  Let’s say you want to explain how something works on your website and you know that if you can make it interesting or funny, people will not only read it, but maybe learn something at the same time.

Use humorous photos or videos to get the person’s attention and then, you admit right away you know the subject might be boring BUT it’s IMPORTANT.  Talk to the potential customer like they’re right in front of you and break down the subject in a way they can relate to or use a real life example they understand.

The humor doesn’t have to be ‘ over the top’ to be effective though sometimes you may want it to be exaggerated to make a point.  In some cases, a little humor goes a long way and inserting funny comments throughout the content on your website will keep the reader interested and encourage them to read more.

Always use humor appropriately

Of course, there’s a few industries where humor may not be appropriate and it’s up to you to decide what is tasteful and what crosses the line.  It goes without saying that when humor is used, it should be in a way that is not demeaning or derogatory in any way.  If humor is used correctly, you won’t have to worry about whether or not you are coming across as professional.

In fact, you can use this to your advantage by making a point of saying that even though you use humor to get your message across, you take your work very seriously.  You don’t need to decide between being professional and using humor-they can work perfectly well together.

Yes, it’s sometimes a fine line to walk but using humor to promote your business is extremely effective.

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Published: December 23, 2017 • Last Updated: March 12, 2020