Never underestimate the power of laughter.  It can brighten one's day and make existing connections even stronger, which is especially important in a relationship industry.

At the recent Inbound Marketing Summit conference, Tim Washer, a former writer for Conan O'Brien, The Onion and SNL, spoke about how comedy is very effective if used in the right way.  His marketing presentation was called "Late-Night Comedy Meets Inbound Marketing," and it made some strong points.

Washer explained that humor can humanize a person or brand, evoking positive emotions. “Humor demonstrates authenticity,”  he said. “It cuts through the noise.”

Washer’s past efforts proved that by making fun of the buffoons in an industry, a blog can get 25 times the visits. Plus humor creates a kinder, gentler brand. It also can lead to amazing media coverage.

“Return on the marketing investment is huge when you try something fun,” said Washer. 

What Humor Works?
The case for adding humor to marketing was compelling. However, he finds that humor often dies on the vine in the corporate setting. A team of employees can often strip out the humor before a marketing message sees the light of day.

Washer put up a slide stating that "73% of people that read corporate blogs are people."

He was poking fun at how many marketing messages are often so robotic, they lose the ability to make a funny human connection. 

His advice suggested not making things too complex.  Plus, if there is over analysis, it keeps from successful storytelling. 

“If you make someone laugh, it is going to work. You can’t have something that everyone loves,” said Washer, again making the case to avoid committees.

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