Today is a special day, Guerilleros! We’ve got the new theme up and running! While it’s a little more modern, this is still the same revolution you know and love. But after the Crash, we figured we’d modernize a little while we were at it. So we hope you like it. Tell us if you don’t.
I also noticed that we now have 42 followers on Networked Blogs, and 42 just happens to be my favorite number. Our 42nd follower also happens to be the newest writer I’ve been working with, and I invited her to write a guest post. Dr. Anna Gralton is a talented writer from Australia, and has been very helpful to the Chefe and I with some blog posts lately.
One of the blogs Anna has been running is topcornholeboards.com. The company name is The Cornhole King, and Anna has written some brilliantly funny posts following the royalty theme. They are completely worth stopping by for. But let me stop going on, and here is Anna’s article!
Tips on Writing Humor in Social Media
Writing humor for social media can be akin to a minefield. Humor’s a great way to get the message across, especially in this day and age with social media. If you get it right, the benefits can be nothing short of a miracle: increasing brand awareness; buzz; attracting new clients and leads; promoting firm-client interaction; increasing followers, fans etc. In contrast, if you get it wrong, you’re likely to confuse the heck out of your readers or, worse still, insult them. They will lose interest and not come back.
Although social media marketing is ultimately about selling and is very serious, the fact of the matter is that much content is set in a light-hearted, entertaining backdrop. As such, if you can find a funny angle or if it just slaps you directly in the face, such as with our Cornhole client blog, then why not run with it? Let’s face it; no one wants to read dull, dreary blog posts about an obviously funny topic.
You might also think that writing a humorous piece is easy and can be done on the spot. Wrong! When writing for social media, as you know, there are many more considerations that go into it. This is where you have to sit down and consciously merge the two.
- Commonsense 101. Make sure the product and/or site is really set up for humor. Consider what the client wants and needs. What type of content do they already have on their site? Consider their brand identity and tap into it. This is where a thorough understanding of the business, their target audience and their objectives is required.
- The Underlying Guts. Think about the guts of the article. What is the post really going to be about? This will be serious and you’ll need to connect humor to it, not vice versa. Only create this connection after the crux of the post has evolved. Unless you have a specific idea in mind, don’t start with humor first.
- Idea Creation. Revolve humor around a subject matter that everyone gets. If a client is entering a nationwide market from a localized geographical area, the humor must be understood by everyone out there in cyberspace. Pick a genre that’s popular. You could even tap into a subject that’s already been done, such as a slapstick movie. One pointer, though, if you’re going to continue to make a series of posts, ensure the topic is large enough to run with.
- Tread Carefully. When writing humor, there are a few basics you should be cautious off. Readers won’t get in-jokes and it will only come off stupid. Don’t say anything politically incorrect – remember it’s for your client, not you. Also, don’t go overboard. A nice subtle bit of humor before getting into the core of the piece is great. Too much and it will come across as ridiculous.
- Feedback. Get a friend or family member with a normal, but lacking, sense of humor and find out on a scale of one to ten what they’d give it. This is the person you tell a joke to and they give that socially inappropriate smirk and walk away. If the scoring hits above five, there’s a good chance you’re onto a winner!
- Frame of Mind. Don’t write the piece when you’ve just had a screaming argument with your next-door neighbor because his dog dodoed on your front footpath for the umpteenth time and you were lucky enough to step in it – again! Do it when you’re in a relaxed, happy frame of mind and thinking happy thoughts. If this happens to be limited in your universe, at least jot down the outline when you’re in a happy mood. You can fill in the contents later.
When writing humor for a social media client, try not to get too carried away. This can lead to “humor specialization” – that is, humor that only you find funny. Keep it light, simple and connected to the brand and customer base.
- Dr. Anna Gralton is the head of Freelance Formations,a freelance writing and research company based in Australia.
Social Media Guerilla brings tips and tricks for effective social media marketing, as well as social commentary to anyone who is interested or will at least listen. We are waging a war on traditional marketing techniques. We are the underground. We are the future. Enlist now.
For an example using humor to drive traffic check out the Cornhole Kingdom, the place for custom cornhole boards. The Kingdom is a great site for humor, and it certainly spreads into the realm of social media.