I don’t know about you. But 2016 has been one heck of a shit-head. I’m really sorry for cursing. I literally never swear but seriously what the heck just happened. From family illnesses, surgeries redundancies you name it, 2016 you’ve been a blast (and yes I’m being ironic!)
But whilst al this crap (sorry last curse word) has been going on, one thing that has remained has been my humour and my positive outlook on life. Seriously I think the Universe just wanted to test that I was as badass and headstrong as I told it I was. Hoping the bad stuff will leave me alone for a little while so I can go gung-ho in 2017.
When I was about 11 or 12, when all my girlfriends where starting to devour boys and make-up and shopping. I was over there in the corner thinking… “I don’t even like boys, they smell!”
Then I got all spotty and then I felt like the ugliest person in the world. No confidence, quiet, introverted. So quiet my teachers were totally gobsmacked that I managed to pass an exam to go to a good school.
I needed a tool in my arsenal to get through what at that time seemed like the rest of my life. I am fortunate to come from a family of subtly witty relatives. Not the extroverted stand on a stage and make people belly laugh, but the more, humble uplifting witty one liners. I seemed to have this gene. I could make people laugh in such a way that they almost didn’t realise I was the one making them laugh.
It’s in the name Beth Hewitt – Be Th[e] He Witt
Translated in to Be the one full of Witt!
Sometimes I would get annoyed because I would say something, (not quite loud enough) and then the class clown would pick up my one liner, say it louder and take all the credit.
Anyway, as I got older and my spots started to drop off, my humour stayed with me. As I went from job to job, new places and met new people, my humour muscle grew stronger and stronger. Learning to not just be funny, but knowing when and where to use it.
Back to today and I’m currently working through my Leonie Dawson shining life planners; focusing on the areas of my life that I to bring to the fore so I can be my most authentic self. I’ve learn that when I (and others) interject humour and true authentic voices into our content we get the best engagement.
After all, we only know how to be ourselves, so when we do that 100% of the time, we are our best shining selves.
And so in 2017 YOU WILL see more of the funny Beth content, interspersed with great information, and positive uplifting stuff that runs through my veins.
Anyway you came here to find out why you should inject humour into your blog posts so here comes the science…
Leigh Anne Jasheway is a stress management and humour expert and she’s written a really great post over at writers digest about how to mix humour-into your writing.
“You may think that when it comes to writing, humor is best used only in fiction or satire. But while we think of comedy in terms of exaggeration or fabrication, effective humor can be just as much about creative misdirection—engaging readers by taking them someplace they don’t expect to go—and subtly choosing metaphors and words that make readers giggle without even knowing why. And a smiling reader is one who’s paying attention and eager to read on.”
So the goal here is to create smiling eager readers! As a sociologist (I have certificate with my name on it to prove it!) Laughing can serve two key human functions. Helping to create a sense of ‘Tribes’ and ‘Community’ and reducing stress!
As bloggers, this is exactly what we should be trying to achieve. Creating communities of followers who know like and trust you.
You might also be trying to relieve stress and anxiety, by creating content that helps people understand something better. Content that shows your readers how to do something. Humour also makes things more memorable and helps you to stand out from the crowd which is a bonus for bloggers.
So why does humour work in blog posts?
Humour, makes people lower their defences and it catches people off guard. In a world where we are saturate by ads; humour breaks down those stuffy marketing practices. Plus, humorous blog posts have a greater chance of being shared by your readers. Think crazy cat video’s, memes, and gifs!
Marc Ensign over at Smart Blogger shares some great information about making an unexpected connection in a funny blog post. Being funny out of content is a great way to hold you audience’s attention and can even help when trying to make a serious point!
“When you mention something seemingly out of place, it brings with it a whole bunch of emotions and associations for free. It works great with lists where you have a few related points and then the last one is from another place entirely. The brain’s normal reaction to this kind of surprise is to find it kind of funny”
Here are my top tips for creating funny blog posts
- Make it match your audience – There are different kinds of funny. Your audience is used to a certain kind of you, so include your funny stuff at appropriate times. But remember to be tasteful.
- Make fun of yourself – Laughing at yourself is a sure-fire way to make people appreciate you even more. It takes a special kinda person to rise above failure or even bigger atrocities.
- Include memes and funny pictures – Use imagery, memes, gifs, video, sounds to make your content come to life. (If you want see a good example of how I did this check out my finest funny post here)
- Use made up words – I love making up words to get my message across. Its shows creativity and individuality.
- Have catchy headlines – A few of my own blog posts titles have included How to Catch a Giraffe, Holy Guacamole, and the Tomato Technique.
- Don’t go crazy silly! – Using humour in the appropriate places works well but If do need to have an all-out crazy blog post – get it all out in one big blow, then tame it down for a few weeks!
Most of all have fun and enjoy the process. If you find it funny others will too. Let me know what you enjoy most funny blog posts. Who are your favourite funny bloggers?