Raise a laugh and raise your audience engagement


Actress Dima Mousseli smiles for a photograph. File photo

Muhammad Yusuf, Features Writer

Laughter in good spirits has always driven positive engagement with audiences. Its positive impact was long recognised as is evident in print ads, radio bytes, and even television commercials, when these were the only marketing channels.  With the advent of social media, humour in communication evolved to transform ways of consuming content.

Today, comedy’s finest potential can be optimised on the World Wide Web. Social media outlets such as captioned memes, Tik Tok videos, even Facebook stories and Instagram reels, are providing much-needed distraction via comedy to brighten our days.

With that, it has also been noticed that content bringing in a humour element appeals far and wide, beyond target audiences. Rightly so, because humour is an unmatched connecting tool that helps bridge the gap between boundaries and cultures.

So, how does creating content with a comic twist work? Easier said than done, says comedian and actress, Dima Mousseli. “You don’t start off thinking that humour is going to be the DNA of your social media content,” she laughs. “It evolves as followers start relating to your posts. It honestly is a sensitive zone because you must consider context, peoples’ values and cultures.

“Once you ignite the lighter side, it can get viral in no time – and you have to be creative rather than just funny. Humour in everyday-life-kind-of-posts is watched repeatedly for their relatability and perhaps takes away an ounce of stress that the viewers might be experiencing. It keeps followers on their edge, as they eagerly await the post to follow. Depending on how your followers comment and engage, the course of action needs to be a blend of curiosity and entertainment.”  Social media influencers would agree that with the prevalence of digital humour, an easy-going tone with an underlying message or camouflaged marketing gimmick, is easier to consume than create. These skills shouldn’t be underestimated as it’s a tightrope walk to drive consumers through an engagement funnel. Without being sarcastic about awkward moments in life, strategic humour can build a loyal follower base.

Appropriate humour and quality content are a welcome and charming break from the monotony of scrolling through topics on social media, as rightly revealed in Sigmund Freud’s philosophy that humour can relieve psychological tension for a positive impact on overall being.

Adds Mousseli: “You can unlock a world of optimism with comedy and good humour. Social media influencers can assure themselves of greater appreciation for the efforts involved in creating content. It’s a skill though to recognise the need for humour in content, as some avenues require a nuanced approach, where comedy could strike the wrong chord. The idea of humour for increased engagement is attractive, but its thoughtful implementation is equally difficult.” With strategic nurturing, humour can accelerate impressive engagement as the benefits of tickling a funny bone are immense. If followers can connect with tongue-in-cheek observations of routine concepts, then relatability tops the list.

Also, good humour is inherently memorable, which helps the content and creator both acquire the coveted ROI (Return On Investment). Furthermore, it also becomes shareable, driving more traffic and engagement via social channels.

A word of caution: one should steer clear of unintended offence and differences in humour styles. Of course, it is also important to constantly monitor your content to stay on top of your audience response. You need to know which content types are working for your brand and which ones aren’t. For the rest, cleverly crafted comedy in content does go a long way than obvious social media engagement goals. Being funny on social media can drive your business seriously. To end, here are some humour salads: “I have to break up with you. We’ve connected on so many platforms – Facebook and Twitter – but I just don’t feel LinkedIn.” It is from Derek Kessinger, who is a “Writer and in the Lemonade Business.” And from me: Sab Tik Tok hai? Which is a take on the Hindi-Urdu question “Sab teek taak hai?” or “Is everything all right?”




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