As the owner of the agency I don't get to design as often as I like, but when I do I sure have fun. Take for example this restaurant. It was stuffy, considered an expensive special occasion venue. Our challenge was to turn it into an elevated, every day fine dining restaurant. With all things serious, the best thing to do is infuse humor. Here we use the irony of the classic Flagstaff hipster to make fun of ourselves. The result: sustained growth over the last year we've had them as a client averaging 52% increase in sales over the prior period for the last seven months. Humor works. But it requires a deft hand and subtlety.
The more serious the brand, the more effective the self-deprecation can be. President Obama hosting a Between Two Ferns interview with Zach Galifianakis at The White House to promote the Affordable Care Act on the Funny Or Die website is an excellent example. The satirical exchange between the two generated over 30 million views and helped lift traffic to HealthCare.gov by 40%.
Not every business calls for humor, but done correctly it can be just the right self-effacing tone that consumers need to see to trust you. Remember, the top three things on a consumer's mind when they visit your site or even meet you for the first time. 1) Why should I care? 2) Why should I believe you? and finally 3) What do you do?