Poking fun at recession fears — getting laid off, watching the 401(k) slide into the abyss — can sometimes make the unthinkable, at least for a time, bearable, some marketing experts said.
Laughter is communal and brings people together, so humor can be marketing gold for a company when it is done right. But it can also backfire if it crosses the line. With black humor, that line can be razor-thin, experts agree.
“There are times black humor works, but it has to be done well,” said Marie Lena Tupot, co-founder of scenarioDNA, a New York consumer behavior research firm that helps companies build their brands. “In these volatile times, when people are being laid off without notice, an advertisement or gimmick that plays on the recession can turn negative and be in poor taste.” Read more