When you think back to ads that have stuck in your mind, or your favourite ads, often they are funny. Why? Because humour is entertaining and audiences love to be entertained. Another great benefit of using humour is it can create a very positive attitude toward your brand personality where customers buy in to your brand culture… when done right!
The Right Product
Humour doesn’t suit every product. For example, where a fast food chain could benefit from a humorous ad, a luxury car brand probably wouldn’t. This is because fast food is a low commitment product and is often an impulsive purchase. Humour can improve our perception of the brand personality and put us in a good mood, lowering our inhibitions. Whereas, luxury car purchases are generally well considered and the nudge given by humour isn’t going to enough to encourage impulsive purchase. In fact, it could have a negative impact on the perception of the brand. After all, we want our luxury cars to be well thought out and crafted and that’s serious business.
Of course, there is a balance. Everyone has a different sense of humour and there is always a balance between funny and obnoxious (or in the case of clowns: terrifying). Being certain that the positives will outweigh the negatives is very important. It’s always possible you could put off a certain type of customer, but if you’re strongly engaging your target market, it can still be a good move. A great example of this is Ultra Tune’s TV ads of 2017 featuring the “Ultra Tune girls”. Hugely unpopular with women and widely regarded as sexist, they still appealed strongly to Ultra Tune’s target market. Their CEO, Sean Buckley, is so happy with the results he’s continued to produce a series of them.
Ultra Tune’s CEO said “men liked the campaign, but lied to their wives and girlfriends that they found it offensive.”
We often use humour as a device in advertising and it has resulted in great customer buy in! Check out our article on our quirky brand development campaigns to see what we did for a caterer and a trailer shop.