How do brands do comedy without pissing people off and damaging the brand?

In a world that is getting more and more politically correct, we are struggling as a community to find the sweet spot with our comedy. Past ideas about what was funny is no longer relevant, and we need to find the right formula. We often misunderstand that comedy delivered by comedians in stand up routines or our TV shows applies to marketing too, or to how we treat people in everyday life. When we represent a brand, or a workplace, we can’t run the same rules. So, what are they?

Comedy is one of the more successful strategies a creative campaign can utilise. Over the years I have done heaps of presentations with clients and asked them to identify their favourite commercial. In just about every single instance clients bring an ad that is either funny or with very warm emotional content. In the same session if you asked the brand representative if they would ever approve that work you can be pretty sure the answer is ‘no’ every time as well!

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