SXSW Interactive 2014
Communicating with Humor: Perils & Best Practices
If Winston Churchill had it right and a joke is actually a “very serious thing” then social good marketers are on board. Increasingly, nonprofits are breaking through the tried-and-true PSA fray by startling us with humor. From McCann Melbourne’s “Dumb Ways to Die” on behalf of Metro Trains to Matt Damon’s “Toilet Strike” on behalf of Water.org, very serious issues, even matters of life and death, are getting the humor treatment. But does funny have merit outside of the initial guffaw? Can public service advertisers effect real change by appealing to audiences’ funny bones?
This panel will examine recent success stories and best practices for comedic delivery of important information, when and why humor works and pitfalls to avoid.
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- What’s behind the humor trend?
- Does humor play differently in the digital/social vs. traditional spaces?
- Is anything off limits? Can everything be funny in the right light?
- How do you test/know if you’ve gone too far?
- Can public service advertisers effect real change by appealing to audiences’ funny bones?
Meg Rushton, Manager, Public Relations & Social Media , Ad Council