I want to talk about humor in your brand today.
Most people enjoy a pleasant experience. Beer has an inherently pleasant aspect to it, from the community around it to the celebrations that happen with it to the deliciousness our bodies enjoy. Fun is good and fun is appropriate with beer.
Humor used effectively and with respect towards all is an excellent element in marketing beer. In our research over the last 5.5+ years women have solidly stated that appropriate humor is attractive when they are making their buying and consuming choices as well. Here’s where it can get sticky – or not.
What precisely is good humor? What’s appropriate, to whom, and when? While there’s a subjectivity to humor there’s also a lot of (un)common sense that should guide us. Ask these questions of the brand to see if they pass:
1. Is there any sexism in the humor? If there is, in any direction, it’s inappropriate.
2. Is there any ageism or racism or any other -ism that degrades any population in the humor? If so, it’s inappropriate.
3. Can a three-year old see it, can a pre-teenager read it and can my grandparent read it and also think it’s funny or do they miss the humor all together?
Appropriate adult humor does not invite disrespect or insulting any population. This is the time to hire a pro outside the company to review ideas. I know since we’ve been invited to engage with clients who want a fresh eye to help the brand grow, not put off a potential customer or 10. Like Eugene Simor, President of Alamo Brewing:
“Thank you so much. You pointed out much that I missed myself. Very valuable info.” – per reviewing potential new label changes.
You can be clever and funny in a thoughtful manner. That’s what makes Carol Burnett and Bill Cosby and Ellen DeGeneres so funny – they humor us with reality and honestly funny stuff; never needing to denigrate or bring anyone down.
And here’s the kicker: Beer should be elevated, not brought down by people on beer companies that find toilet or racy humor suitable for their companies. If they’d ask themselves: Do I have a female in my life I care about? The answer would undoubtedly be yes – so relate those ties that bind and execute humor that respects those loved ones as much as it should respect your beer.
That’s where humor in beer is appropriate. Use it wisely and most likely you’ll get good feedback and consumer engagement.