When it comes to humour in creativity, are boys having all the fun?
Where’s the comedy?
When our latest campaign for adidas women went live, it received a load of positive vibes from industry publications.
Of all the glowing reviews, one negative comment stood out to me. Two words in particular… “LACKS HUMOUR.”
It completely overshadowed all the positive feedback we were getting and consumed my whole day. But then I realised something. She was totally right.
Really annoying when that happens. So I did what any self-respecting creative does... Tuck into a lovely dinner of red wine, giant Wotsits and self-doubt.
When you look at campaigns aimed at women, they’re either two things. Charming and light-hearted or hardcore and #badass.
But where’s the comedy? Where’s the irony? Where’s the weirdness?
Sadly, when it comes to advertising creative, the guys are still having all the fun.
It’s probably because, in an attempt to be taken seriously in this world, we’ve become so serious.
But the truth is that being a woman is filthy good fun.
And it’s hilarious.
Creative Moment is all about the actual creative so let’s talk about a few recent pieces of work aimed at women.
This Girl Can
Me Again for This Girl Can has some nice moments but feels forced at times and looks like something we’ve all seen before.
It doesn’t dip into wit, even though fitness has its hilarious moments.
Just ask any woman who’s tried to find her pelvic floor in a Pilates class.
What is it? Where is it?
Can I coax it out with a chocolate digestive?
The Wild Ones
The Wild Ones for Rapha Women 2020 starts off very earnestly but there’s a gorgeous moment towards the end where the team just howl together.
It’s weird and raw and wild, not unlike what it feels like to be a woman at times.
Be a Lady They Said
Be a Lady They Said has some killer lines but it’s about as diverse as any agency’s leadership team and feels like it could pack more punch with more wit.
The problem with being angry and serious all the time is that it reinforces the idea that women can only be two things – cutesy or angry.
There’s huge untapped power in humour.
Once Upon a No
Pure Leaf’s Once Upon a No is utter magic and proves the above point that an ad can be brilliantly witty and have a deeper message to it.
I love this campaign.
The tone is bang on and I don’t feel like I’m being pandered to.
Girls just wanna have fun
So where does that leave us?
Overall, women’s campaigns need a little more Fleabag.
A little more Broad City and Insecure.
And a lot more The Guilty Feminist in them.
Let’s look to the series and podcasts we love when we're creating ads for women.
Let’s be inspired by the women who make us laugh loudly AND think deeply and feel unashamedly great about being women.
Copywriters, use your words to craft smart humour.
Art directors, use beautiful visuals to show us the funny side not just the earnest side.
And brands, you’ve inspired us.
You’ve empowered us.
Now please entertain us.
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