WHAT’S SO DANGEROUS ABOUT COMEDY?
Nothing. Unless you think differentiating your brand, producing unique messaging and creating an emotional connection with your audience is not what you are going for? And the best way to get there is to entertain. And there is nothing more effective and memorable than comedy… when you get it right.
To quote Tim Washer, a senior marketer from Cisco - "When a brand shows that it doesn't always take itself too seriously, it's a powerful way to demonstrate authenticity and confidence, as well as connect with your community."
Every communication you put out there (be it external or internal), is an opportunity to educate, entertain and wake people up. So why not do it with a laugh? The best comedy presents realistic situations taken a step further. That’s why people connect with it. That’s comedy.
Here are some excuses I’ve heard why "corporate" comedy has not worked or even attempted.
Risk - “Let’s not take a chance with something new. Sherry from HR will star in another Star Trek parody.”
Unless Louie C.K. works in your Marketing Dept, you want professionally designed strategic comedy. Use outside folks who know comedy to work with you.
Budget - “We don’t have a real budget, so we used interns from the local college.”
You get what you pay for.
Expediency - “My boss just said she wants something for the new homepage that is going live in 2 weeks”.
When deadlines are tight (when aren't they?), think simple. A singular concept is always the most powerful.
For example, I directed a piece for Cisco that takes place in one room. A man sits in front of his tv. His comic frustration in navigating poor voice recognition is amplified by that confining environment. It was shot in a day, finished in a week.
Hint #1 – Global Audience
If the video is only going to be used for primarily English speaking audiences, subtle word play is fine. But if it will also be screened for non-English audiences, visual comedy is more effective. You should be able to turn the sound off and still get it.
Hint #2 - Priorities
If budget forces your production to choose between that fabulous new 12K camera (the director just must try) or better on-camera talent, ALWAYS go with talent. Would you rather watch AL Pacino recorded on an iPhone, or Larry from Accounting filmed in Panavision 3D?
So with all this in mind, add COMEDY to your marketing toolbox. It works!
So let me pitch you this concept. A normal teleconference scene but instead of…….(fade out)