Insights | January 23, 2024

ROI of LOL: How Comedians Bring The Power Of Punchlines To Events

In the competitive world of corporate events, creating a memorable experience that resonates with attendees is key. One seemingly unconventional yet increasingly popular choice is incorporating stand-up comedy into your event. Beyond the immediate laughs, booking a stand-up comedian brings many benefits, from promoting health and breaking down barriers to tapping into the booming industry that comedy has become. Humor is even predicted to be one of the creative trends that will lead the way in 2024, which means it’s a big opportunity for brands looking to connect with their audiences on an emotional level.

Laughter, as the saying goes, is indeed the best medicine. Scientifically proven, laughter triggers the release of endorphins, the body’s natural feel-good chemicals. These endorphins promote an overall sense of well-being and can act as powerful stress busters. The cardiovascular benefits of laughter are also noteworthy, with increased blood flow improving heart health.

G7 booked Kumail Nanjiani for an IBM virtual event during the pandemic in 2020.

Introducing laughter into a corporate setting through a stand-up comedian not only adds entertainment that elevates your event but also contributes to the overall health and happiness of your audience. With the demanding nature of business events, offering a moment of laughter can serve as a refreshing break, rejuvenating attendees and enhancing their overall experience.

Corporate events often bring together diverse audiences, and breaking down barriers between them is crucial for successful networking and collaboration. Laughter has a unique ability to transcend cultural and professional differences, creating a shared experience that brings people together. As Sophie Scott, PhD, a professor of cognitive neuroscience at University College London and one of the world’s leading experts on laughter, told Reader’s Digest, the act of laughing is an emotional expression tied to joy, but “it’s a social joy that is primarily experienced with other people.” That means there’s a community aspect that accompanies laughing. People are actually 30 times more likely to laugh if they are with someone as opposed to being alone.

Stand-up comedy, with its relatable anecdotes and universal themes, becomes a social glue, fostering connections among attendees. As laughter becomes a shared language, it eases tension, making individuals more approachable and open to interaction. This communal experience not only enhances the event but also contributes to the creation of a positive atmosphere, fostering genuine connections among participants.

This environment is also conducive to integrating brands and driving trial in a way that adds value to an already fun experience. For Slow & Low, G7 creates strategic venue partnerships to introduce their ready-to-drink cocktails to fans in entertainment settings. To keep pace with the growing popularity of stand-up comedy, these venues are booking comedians more regularly. In response, we created tasting activations at select comedy shows, and the sampling integrations exceeded expectations. Guests were more open to tasting something new and having a cocktail experience to pair with their comedy.

In 2023, G7 booked Jeff Foxworthy for a private event in Canada.

In recent years, the stand-up comedy industry has experienced a remarkable surge in popularity. With the rise of streaming platforms and a growing appetite for diverse and relatable content, comedians have found new stages to showcase their talent. This surge has led to an influx of fresh, innovative voices and a broader appeal for stand-up comedy. Thanks to Netflix’s commitment to produce over 350 specials, 1 in 20 of their subscribers watched at least 20 stand-up titles in 2022. And Netflix Is a Joke Fest, the largest stand-up event of its kind, sold 260,000 tickets in 2022 which will have more than 300 live events taking place over 11 days in LA this year.

In years past, brands have had to shy away from popular comedians due to audience sensitivity to language and content but as the bench gets deeper with a variety of comics, there are more relevant comedians who work cleanly and appeal to a wide audience.

Brands can tap into this popularity by booking a stand-up comedian for their events. Audiences are increasingly drawn to the authenticity and humor that these performers bring to the table, making it an effective strategy for engaging a wide range of attendees.

In addition to performing a stand-up routine, there are other ways to integrate humor into your event. If you have a new product and want to provide a demonstration on how it works, bring in a comedian to add some flavor and make it seem less like work. Let’s face it, learning new things can be frustrating, but with some humor, it can be a good time. For Adobe Max, Adam Devine added comedic commentary on stage as Adobe specialists demonstrated their latest software features.

In 2019, G7 helped Workday kick off their annual conference, Rising, with a stand-up performance by Jerry Seinfeld, making sure the coming days of the conference carried a fun energy.

If your event requires transporting guests to multiple locations, add a comedian to the buses to crack a few jokes while en route, or better yet, let them play tour guide. They’re talented performers no matter the stage, so they can operate in front of a large audience or in front of a more intimate gathering. Comedians are also a great option for hosting duties, facilitating improv between your guests, and moderating lighthearted keynote conversations. If your guests are attending workshops throughout the day, a stand-up comedian can provide much needed brain breaks to make the information more digestible and the day more enjoyable.

Booking a comedian for your brand event is more than just a source of entertainment—it’s a strategy that aligns with the evolving preferences of audiences. From promoting health and breaking down barriers to tapping into the growing popularity of stand-up comedy, this choice can enhance your guests’ engagement. As the laughter echoes through the venue, so too will the positive impact on your brand and the lasting memories created for your attendees.