Stop, Look, and Laugh: How Humour Strengthens Advertising

AdvertisingCommercial signage is generally straightforward and obsessed with call-to-actions. While this is SOP, the bombardment of numerous advertisements should drive every advertiser to stand out.

If your objective is to blend into the collage of written ads, you may want to rethink your strategies.

Customers reading your signage may be sleepy, bored or rushing to go somewhere with no time to spare for your boring service announcement. Printing experts from Signs n Stuff say if you want people to line up for your service, you should be able to turn heads at least.

Although that sounds like a lot of work, you don’t have to think too hard or big. Just think – funny.


So how does being funny get you customers? By arousing people’s memory.

Science says there is a link between laughter and memory. ‘Laughing with friends or even watching 20 minutes of humour on TV, as I do daily, helps me cope with my daily stressors,’ says Dr Gurindor S. Bains. The less stress you have, she adds, the better your memory.

If you get people to laugh, giggle, chuckle, or guffaw with your signage, you’re increasing the chances of potential customers to remember and purchase your product.

Communication Advantages

The quick-impact appeal of humour is what catches the attention of your customers. What maintains it is the aftereffect. It proves as a good flavour to the usual communication through the casual and positive tone. The audience tends to feel a stronger connection with a brand that speaks their language.


Before you go ahead and leave a comical signage outside your shop, keep in mind that humour is not applicable anywhere or anytime. First, consider the potential audience of your campaign. Are they the kind of people who would be persuaded by a funny sign on the wall? Or are they more likely to find it inappropriate?

Second, analyse your product. Will humour reinforce or trivialise your services? If you’re promoting an opening of a pet grooming salon, you’re good to go. But if you’re offering, say, medical supplies, then better stick to tradition.

Lastly, make your humour tasteful. Veer away from sexist or racist jokes. Keep it clean. Offensive humour or the kind that tries too hard can work against you, so hiring professionals to come up with the right witticisms may be the best move.