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Improv Your Content with Comedy - Using the principles of comedy to improve your content efforts

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This presentation was delivered by Bill Connolly, iCrossing's Content Marketing Manager and resident comedian at the Content Marketing Conference in Las Vegas, May 2015.

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Improv Your Content with Comedy - Using the principles of comedy to improve your content efforts

  1. 1. 1 Using the principles of comedy to improve your content efforts Bill Connolly, iCrossing, @billconnolly Content Marketing Conference, May 14th, 2015, Las Vegas, NV Improv Your Content with Comedy
  2. 2. 2 Examples of Comedic Content
  3. 3. 3 “Eddie the Terrible” – Humane Society “While Eddie has never actually attacked another dog, he’s made it abundantly clear that he hasn’t ruled out the possibility.” @billconnolly http://hssvacc.blogspot.com/2014/12/a-full-disclosure-blog-three-reasons.html
  4. 4. 4 “Tough Season” – Onion Labs, Lenovo @billconnolly http://shop.lenovo.com/us/en/landingpage/nfl/
  5. 5. 5 “Oh Snap! Series” - OtterBox @billconnolly
  6. 6. 6 “Don’t Stop A-Meme-In’” - Marketo @billconnolly
  7. 7. 7 “Share the Love” - Cisco @billconnolly
  8. 8. 8 Even “Big Data” Can Be Fun! @billconnolly
  9. 9. 9 “Digital Predictions” - iCrossing @billconnolly
  10. 10. 10 Basic Improv Principles
  11. 11. 11 Yes, and… pic: dhhl.hawaii.gov@billconnolly • In improv comedy, actors must say “yes” to their reality “and” build something together • In content development, say “yes” to new ideas • Small ideas can lead to big performance • Start with a basic point of view and grow it into a series of useful, high-quality content for your consumers
  12. 12. 12 Let it Breathe pic: commons.wikimedia.org @billconnolly • In improv comedy, most scenes begin in very simple ways and slowly grow to something hilarious • The same can be true of content • Just because an idea isn’t game-changing at first, don’t kill it and prevent it from turning into something • Remember, small ideas can lead to big performance • Let your ideas breathe, come back to them, you’ll be surprised at what might happen
  13. 13. 13 Road to Crazy Town pic: blog.primalpastures.com@billconnolly • According to Amy Poehler, the key to good improv comedy is to “live life on stage” • Good comedy comes from everyday life • Good content comes from seemingly ordinary ideas • Key questions from your clients • Nuanced ways to use software • How you structure a meeting • Not all great content has to be newsworthy • Don’t take your intelligence for granted, there is an infinite well of great content in your day-to-day
  14. 14. 14 Know Your Audience pic: www.paperhi.com@billconnolly • For comedians, understanding the audience is imperative to success • The same is true for marketers • Create content your audience wants to consume, not that you want them to consume • Spend time learning the interests and pain points of your various audiences, and defining those segments • That way, you’ll be much more able to address their needs with your content development efforts
  15. 15. 15 Listen pic: ww.thedailybeast.com@billconnolly • In improv comedy, actors must truly listen and be present in order to understand what is happening • Marketers have difficulty listening to others instead of pushing their own agenda • Listen, to your colleagues, your customers, and your competition, to gain insight and content inspiration • To uncover original ideas you must be truly present in conversations with others • It’s a difficult skill, but one that can be practiced and learned
  16. 16. 16 Everyone Fails pic: offbeat.topix.com @billconnolly • In improv comedy, failure is a virtual certainty • Comedians fail over and over again, and as a result become immune to its impact • Content marketers must develop a similarly thick skin • Take risks, develop content you aren’t 100% sure will succeed, and measure your performance to learn • Sometimes you won’t succeed, but you’ll be much more likely to hit a home run than if you play it safe

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