I've spent the last 4 years performing stand-up, marketing live comedy events in Oxford, and flyering for shows at the Edinburgh comedy festival.  In the process I've learnt quite a bit about engaging people in the streets, on the stage and online! So here are 5 marketing lessons from the world of comedy:

1. Be Brief

On stage you have to get to the punchlines in as few words as possible without waffling. When flyering you only have a split second as someone walks past you to summarize your show in an appealing soundbite. Comedy teaches you to be concise and not to waste a word, the same applies with content! Keep blogs and posts punchy and to the point to make the most of people's fleeting attention! 

2. Be specific

Specificity is key to letting people know what to expect. With hundreds of thousands of shows at the Edinburgh Fringe punters aren't going to watch a generic 'comedy night', you have to be specific! Be clear, be obvious, let your audience know what they're getting. Don't get bogged down in flowery language or technical jargon, be direct and spell out what you want to say in the simplest way possible.

3. Be targeted

Know your market. You have more success flyering people coming out of a show that is similar to yours rather than flyering random tourists on the street. Think about who your audience is, where they might be, and target them. The same is true of content online, be targeted. If you wouldn't flyer in the middle of the night when your audience isn't awake then you shouldn't post online then either! 

4. Be interesting

On stage as well as in your content grab people's attention. You don't always have to be hilarious, but if you want people to listen to you then you need to always be interesting. If you're saying anything worth reading or watching then people will listen. If you aren't being funny ask yourself - are you at least being interesting?

5. Know your voice

Anyone can tell jokes, but no one sounds like you, recognizing your unique perspective and your expertise is how you let people know you're a thought leader on stage and in your content! Look at your competition and understand what you do differently, what sets you apart is what will make your unique voice shine through in your content.

6. People love lists

Putting things into a list format makes things simple, and digestible. By having a list you are being brief and specific plus you can have some fun by subverting expectations at the end and breaking the rules you've set up!

7. Always leave the audience wanting mor...