In this digital world, we’re reaching the point where companies are expected to provide more than just a great service or product. Of course, this is where you should start, but more and more, companies are noticing the benefits of being authentic and creating a true bond with their audience. Being able to make your customers feel an emotion when engaging with your products or advertisements can allow your business to stand out. 

Humor can be a very effective advertising tool for taking your product, brand, or service to the next level.

Humor is a great way to trigger emotions in your audience, and triggering emotion will take your brand much further than using the basic, plain, cut and dry advertising techniques that so many companies rely on.

funny billboard advertising

Types of Humor in Advertising

There are many different types of humor in advertising that can be effective. These include:

  • Surprises
  • Personification
  • Exaggeration
  • Puns
  • Comparison

Read more about each method below!


One of the best types of humor in advertising is using surprises. Can you remember a time that someone did something completely unexpected? As we know from the real world, surprise triggers a comic response. The initial reaction of shock and surprise quickly gets replaced by a feeling of “wow, that was hilarious”. In advertising, using surprise can be a little trickier, since it definitely needs to be done tastefully. We recommend that if you’re going to implement surprise into advertising, it’s a good idea to workshop your ideas with a team to ultimately create a funny yet appropriate advertisement. 

Advertising messages can use surprises in a bunch of different ways, across many different mediums. For example, you could choose a bold headline or billboard that shocks people, even just for a split second. You could send emails with big, animated surprises, or create videos with dialogue that can startle viewers. Of course, just like with any other advertisement, you need to be able to incorporate your product or service in there. However, surprises can help generate attention, as it is random, ridiculous, and if done right, will leave an impression. 


Personification is one of the most used, and best, types of humor in advertising. It’s one of the most classic tricks in the book, but there’s a reason for that. The use of personification in advertising is truly endless. Think of the Geico gecko or Tony the frosted flakes tiger. These well-known brand mascots help bring an additional sense of humor, and therefore memorability, to advertisements, cereal boxes, and entire brands. 

Personification helps messages be more entertaining and memorable. Of course, personification doesn’t always make sense to use, but when done properly, people will both understand and appreciate the humor. We’re naturally drawn to people that make us laugh, and there’s no reason to think that this doesn’t apply to brands and advertisements as well. One of the great things about advertising is that it is a great platform for making unrealistic possibilities come to life.

types of humor in advertising


Exaggeration, or blowing things way out of proportion, is another one of the best types of humor in advertising. It is often used to really emphasize a point or attribute, or to simply poke fun at a real-life issue or common scenario. A word of caution- exaggeration definitely helps make you emphasize a point, it doesn’t necessarily make people much more receptive to that point you’re trying to make. Exaggeration, however, is one of the best tools you can use to make your ad more unique, expressive, and memorable- nine times out of ten, these attributes are a big plus.

This type of humor blows things way out of proportion, to a level that makes people appreciate just how unbelievably extra it is. It can be used to really hammer out a point or to make fun of a common scenario or real-life issue. While it makes people understand that you’re trying to make a point, it doesn’t necessarily make them more receptive to the point you’re making. But, It does help your message be more unique and expressive, which is almost always a plus.


Puns are a really double-edged sword, so it’s definitely important to tread lightly with these. They’re the easiest types of humor to go wrong, but a cleverly delivered pun can be an effective way of advertising. A lot of people and companies avoid puns altogether, mainly because it’s pretty easy to underdeliver if there isn’t much of a bang. 

It doesn’t make sense to use a full pun in a full joke format, but a pun could be used in a shorter phrase on a billboard. It’s definitely a great way to make people chuckle, and the ah-ha moment associated with understanding a pun can help drive brand recall. It definitely takes a lot of time, workshopping, and exterior feedback to make sure your pun is clever enough and a good fit for your target audience.


Lastly, one of the final types of humor you commonly see in advertising is comparison. Comparison is pretty straightforward: it puts two or more things beside each other to create a contrast. Many big brands use this before, like fast food companies showing their delicious, juicy burger versus the old, drab, crusty version of the competitors. Many of these comparisons also include exaggeration, which additionally helps appeal to our sense of humor. When it comes down to it, product A isn’t necessarily this much better than product B, but weaving a sense of humor into the comparison can help persuade a customer better. Customers could appreciate the boldness and humor of your message.

how to make a funny billboard

bMedia: Puerto Rico’s Leaders in Outdoor Advertising

Humor is a great method to employ on many different advertising mediums, billboards included. A humorous billboard can be eye-catching, memorable, and provide your company with a great return on that advertisement. 

If you’re advertising in Puerto Rico, there’s no better billboard company than bMedia. At bMedia, we have decades of experience designing eye-catching and high-performing billboards in Puerto Rico. We use high-level advanced analytics to create and subsequently monitor your business’s ideal billboard advertising campaign, and we have hundreds of advertising locations to choose from.

bMedia are Puerto Rico’s leaders in OOH media and advertising. We will work with you to ensure your advertisements are seen and remembered. Contact us today!