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The Power of Humour in Marketing

The truth is, after a few back-to-back years of pandemic life, we could all use a little laugh.

“In a world of mass media overload, we want to watch things that entertain us and, better still, make us laugh, even if they happen to be ads”, reports Kantar Research.

According to Kantar, humour is “the most powerful creative enhancer of receptivity and is more expressive than other narrative approaches”.

Humour humanizes brands and bonds them to consumers more closely through moments and themes we can all relate to. Its realness gives it universal appeal, but it must be relevant and appropriate to avoid making a misstep.

The immediacy of social media has created infinite new ways for brands to flex their comedic chops. Social media has blown the door open to new dimensions of humour and fun through memes, dances and challenges that make everyone feel they can get involved. This also allows brands to participate in and shape culture in real-time right along-side their consumers’ deepening intimacy.

Kantar reports that “humour styles can vary wildly across platforms. TikTok’s humour is fast-moving and often satirical. Facebook and Instagram humour is often more personal, and YouTube humour tends to be more story-based and longer than other platforms.”

The best humour-fuelled campaigns extend to every touch point of a brand, including packaging. A great example of this is Snickers’ iconic “You’re not you when you’re hungry” campaign.

Building from the insight of how feeling “hangry” can create dramatic and uncharacteristic behaviour, the TV ads famously used beloved divas like Joan Collins to bring the insight to life successfully increasing global sales by 15.9% in its first year alone. But it didn’t stop there, jumping on the trend of personalized packaging, Snickers replaced its brand name on packaging with 21 hunger symptoms.

With the timeliness of this blog post around April Fool’s Day, here are a few jokes we loved from brands – including a few pranks developed by our Pigeon team



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