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Marketing With Humor And Heart

One of the biggest traps we see organizations fall into with their marketing is being too literal. Marketers want to emphasize the facts of their company and product, and granted, these things are important in communicating who you are. But facts alone are not enough. Successful marketing must also include a dose of good humor to cut through the static and stick in people’s brains and hearts… figuratively speaking, of course.

If the word “humor” alarms you, I invite you to relax. Like all things, humor is a spectrum. It can be subtle and sweet, or wacky and outlandish. It can be a sly wink, or an anvil falling on your head. Whatever your company’s style, incorporating humor into your marketing automatically adds warmth, personality, and playfulness – all good things. And if you can make your audience laugh, they are far more likely to remember you and want to partner with you.

So how do you break free from the literality trap?

Make Space For Fun

When you are the expert on your company and product, it can be really hard to know what information is most important to share, and what to scrap. When you are burdened with too many facts and features, there is less room for humor and levity.

By thinking like your audience, and figuring out which key points will matter most to them, you can cut excess info and create space for playfulness and jokes. This is crucial to keeping your audience interested and engaged or else, they’ll be sucked into the next cute cat video that comes their way.


Good humor often comes from the unexpected. So in crafting your next marketing piece, ask yourself, “how can I flip the script?” Put yourself in the position of the audience. What might they be expecting to hear or see, and how can you counter those expectations to create a moment that surprises and delights them?

We’ve had great success with “gerbiloids” (trademark pending) in our own promo videos. We knew our audience was expecting…. not humanoid gerbil characters, so we ran with that.

Stay True To You

As mentioned, humor comes in many shapes and sizes. Depending on your industry and brand, you’ll want to determine what jokes are appropriate and will best connect with your audience. Some questions to ask to get the funny juices flowing:

  • What are the main demographics of your audience? Men or Women? Millennials or seniors?
  • What is your brand voice? Sophisticated, techy, amiable, silly?
  • If your company was a person, what kind of jokes would they make?

Start there to create content that is true to your organization. When your company is genuine in how it communicates, people can tell, and it makes a good impression. By injecting a little bit of humor and heart into your marketing, you’ll hold attention longer and build brand loyalty. Trust us – authenticity looks good on you.