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Does Funny Sell? The Pros and Cons of Incorporating Humor into Your Content

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Bloggers often find themselves wondering if there’s a certain type of tone they should undertake when writing content. The right tone largely depends on the emotional response you want to evoke from your readers, and also how you want to convey yourself as an authoritative figure on the subject you’re writing about. As long as you’re able to adjust the tone of your writing to match who you are as a professional, there is no wrong tone to take if it proves to be effective with your audience. 

The universal takeaway for incorporating humor into your content is to add it in moderation and balance it out with helpful information. Here we will look at the pros and cons of adding humor to your firm’s website.

The Pros 

An obvious reason to integrate humor into legal blogs is that it’s a surefire way to make your firm stand out from all the rest. The audience that you attract with your content often goes through dozens of basic question-and-answer posts on different websites, and they all can end up blending together. If you’re able to effectively engage readers so they stay on your blog for an extended period of time, reading it from start to finish, you are a step ahead of your competitors. 

Psychologically, as most of us know, providing some form of amusement can significantly reduce the receiver’s stress and anxiety. A harmless play on words or anecdotes can serve as a welcome distraction for individuals who find themselves in need of legal counsel. 

Humor in your posts also has the ability to foster trust between you and your readers. When looking for answers to legal questions online, your prospective clients are undoubtedly encountering legal jargon and foreign concepts — leaving them with more questions than answers. By distilling complex topics and adding some levity to these topics, as appropriate, you can effectively engage and educate your readers. 

Of course, there are some topics where humor should be avoided at all costs; we can all agree, there’s nothing funny about a wrongful death suit or workplace discrimination claim. 

Social Media Standpoint

There’s a quality to humor that makes it easily shareable amongst an audience in this social media age. If you post an anecdote unique to the field you practice in and it resonates with your reader, your post may be shared in the general/legal community alike, leading to greater visibility. 

Establishing yourself as a professional who is known for taking on a tactfully jovial tone in your writing, can be used to your benefit when creating posts fit for social platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. Appealing to the public’s sense of humor helps them pay more attention to otherwise complex information that may still be foreign to them. By combining serious posts with a few fun-spirited ones, it can showcase the versatility and create a more universal appeal. Funny yet unoffensive visuals and jokes are great examples of making your firm memorable, as well as approachable.

The Cons

As innocent as humor may seem, it’s important to use it in moderation and be hypersensitive to the meaning behind jokes. The last thing anyone wants to do is make a joke at the expense of a person or a sensitive topic. It’s possible to turn off potential clients if they don’t understand the joke, or worse if they take it the wrong way.

As you write copy, it’s important that you don’t get sidetracked by humor. Even if your audience is looking for an indication of relatability in your content, they also want to be sure that they’re dealing with a knowledgeable attorney that takes his/her profession seriously. So at the end of any post, be sure to wrap it up in the informed tone you started with.

Being a representative of your firm, you’re not using humor to purely entertain. At the end of the day, it’s just one of the many advantageous marketing strategies you can use to put yourself ahead of other practices. If you don’t consider yourself to be a funny person, don’t try to be one. It’s better to stay true to your character than to force an ingenuine tactic. There are always other routes you can take when marketing the unique aspects of your firm.

With all this in mind, humor is meant to be used as a tool to breathe personality into your already information-heavy content. Help remove the cloud of fear that has a tendency to surround attorneys. If you can successfully convey your message as a professional in both a well-informed and light-hearted way, you will be able to prove that funny does indeed sell.