Take a moment to ponder these questions:
- Have you ever tried to have conflict with someone who keeps making you smile?
- How terrible would socializing be without humor?
- Can you think of anything more inherently human than laughter?
Now ask yourself: does humor belong in a social media strategy? The answer is: DUH.
Social media is SOCIAL. As a brand, you likely have a presence on social platforms with the intention of selling a product, but you can’t go full force promotional all day every day. Why? Because savvy social media users will hide you, unfollow you, ignore you and ultimately dislike you for inundating them with advertisements. The key is to create content that earns trust and builds brand affinity. Humor can make a brand feel relatable and when done exceptionally well, even off limits to trolling. No one likes a heckler at a great stand up show.
Humor is the king of viral content, and yes it does translate to conversion/ sales. If you are witty enough to get some LOLs, you will likely get some shares from your audience, as well as organic follower growth. On Facebook, shares, likes, and comments on your funny post translate to more of your content getting seen because you are putting out good stuff. This is when you take advantage of the momentum and share something a bit more promotional – in a clever way of course. There are countless opportunities to integrate humor in social media marketing, and I believe this tactic should be used all day every day. Here are a few examples:
MeUndies Sponsored Post on Facebook:
Was I targeted because I “like” Dirty Dancing on Facebook? Am I guilty of noticing this ad because I was looking at butts? Did it work? Sort of, I looked at the website but they seemed expensive for my literal cheap ass.
Hotels.com’s Captain Obvious on Twitter:
“He” used a trending hashtag and trending hashtags are the ones that people are talking about (obviously). I just personally love this persona on the TV commercials so much that I end up reading his tweets with his voice in my head. In turn, I could see myself finding a great travel deal through hotels.com, simply because I follow Captain Obvious for entertainment purposes.
A behind the scenes photo of me on the Genius House Instagram:
This ‘caption this photo’ post shows that we like to poke fun at ourselves and the weird faces we make, while also showing us hard at work filming an event. Plus I had a cute outfit on that I wanted to inconspicuously show off.
A Comfort Colors gif response on Twitter:
You gotta click this one but it’s worth it, I swear: https://twitter.com/ComfortColorsTs/status/623873227236847617
The connection between this cat and shaq is everything. And the fact that the tweet was written by a tall/ big guy brand advocate… That’s the kind of social media magic that makes me love what I do.
Some Final Words of Advice:
Maybe this goes without saying, but jokes can backfire. More like backexplode when offensive, sarcastic, or completely inappropriate material comes from a brand in a public setting. If you are not a naturally witty person (or the Dublin Coffman High School Class Clown of 1998), tread carefully. Run your material by some people, but not the lawyers because they will ruin every joke.