Laughter is a universal language. Regardless of our upbringing, demographic, nationality or taste, the sound and emotion behind someone’s laugh is something that we all understand. Its content may vary depending on where you are in the world, but it is present in every human society on Earth. This is why comedy is perhaps the most effective tool when putting together any commercial, animation or explainer video.
For around a decade, the general tone and style of corporate video hasn’t changed much. Even though the appetite for video has increased exponentially, most video producers have failed to step out from the norm and create content that demands attention. However, video producers are now beginning to get the message, and injecting comedy into video content is becoming more and more popular.
Comedy has the unique ability to elevate any subject, no matter how dull it is. It can take the most mundane of subjects and turn it into something truly memorable. The brain logs information linked with experiences of extreme emotion very effectively, so, unless you want to make your viewers cry, humour is the best way to go!
Let’s take a look at some awesome examples of how comedy can work its magic!
This is proof that an effective concept needn’t be particularly complicated. There is not even any dialogue in here, nor is there a pair of glasses in sight; the message is so clear, and the situation (although exaggerated) so recognisable that these things are not needed. Simple comedy at its best.
This advert again works beautifully through the use of a universally recognised interaction. We have all been given directions by someone, thanked them, and still not have had the faintest idea what they said or where exactly to go. This is a comic situation used to great effect; it creates a fun memory and frames the product without shoving it into the consumers’ faces.
Cinematic, dynamic and with a fantastic twist. Although the medieval fight scene is exciting, it is not that different from most medieval fight scenes. The twist of ‘the bear’ is not only a sharp change of direction, but it is also a comical collision of so many amusing cultural and historical references.
This marries comedy together with mystery. If there is one thing that hooks into our emotions as well as comedy, it is suspense. The humour in this keeps the video going, distracting us from the slight confusion of the situation. The comic relief leads us all away from the answer to the question we have had for the entire commercial; what is going on here?
So why does comedy work so well in corporate and commercial video? Well, first of all, most people like to laugh. Of course, not everyone’s sense of humour is the same, but regardless of whether your preference, it will remain memorable. This is because comedy requires bold choices, so whether people like the choice or not, they will certainly remember it. Comedy content is also the best way to create a virality effect. Viewers only share content if they are compelled to do so, for this to happen the content needs to be extremely useful, exciting, or, you guessed it, funny. Make your video work hard for you by making it comedic, it could be the most valuable PR you have ever invested in.
Comedy is tricky though. Many say that it is considerably more difficult to construct than drama. It takes careful conception, sensitivity to what humour is acceptable and currently in fashion, clear story and expert timing. You have to try your best to avoid clichés, whilst still making the comedy universal. There is nothing more disappointing than a video that is clearly trying to be funny but misses the punchline or is simply trying too hard. How do you go about getting it right? Well, talk to people. Gather a database of opinions by talking to your friends, your colleagues and most importantly, experts. The best place to start is to get as many varied opinions on your concept as possible in order to mould it into something that is well rounded and universally amusing.
No matter what your topic is or which industry your business or brand is from, there is always room to inject humour and comedy into your video commercials. It might be much easier to stick to the clichés and do the boring hard-sells, but if you are looking to get handsomely rewarded and to be remembered, put a smile on your audience’s faces.