March 3rd, 2016
Welcome to the World of Improv-ertising.
FACT: Funworks is a San Francisco-based creative agency that pairs brands (like HP and Pandora) and ad agencies together with improv comics for good ole fashioned free-thinking brainstorm sessions.
FACT: The founder of the Dollar Shave Club (and star/writer/producer of all the commercials) is a former improv comedian.
Why so much improv love from the ad world? Because improv is all about idea generation. Rapid, instantaneous, off-the-cuff, bulk idea generation. Ideas that, in the hands of trained professionals, usually happen to be humorous. And as we all know: laughter sells.
It’s why corporations seek out famous improv theaters like Second City to boost their employee creative thinking skills.
And it’s why, when you’re an ad agency that prides itself on its ability to “rise above the blah blah,” you tap those trained in the improv and sketch comedy arts to craft meaningful brand messages. With that said…
Shameless BRO-FACT: Mark McKenzie (Brokaw ACD/copywriter) and Aaron McBride (Brokaw copywriter) are known as one-half of the sketch comedy group Last Call Cleveland—not your average city’s token sketch group. In their 10-plus years (and running) reign, they’ve toured and sold out shows all across the country, brought home the top prize at the Toronto Sketch Festival (take that, Lorne Michaels!), produced an incredibly popular web series for HBO, and even serenaded Kanye’s not-so-better half on a talk show (uh…long story).
And of course, on a daily basis, Mark and Aaron help develop thoughtful strategies, ideas, and copy that only experienced joke writers can. But it doesn’t stop there. They lend their on-screen and voiceover talents to numerous projects. They spread the good Brokaw word to other cities through an insightful and often funny culture presentation. They even host our holiday party.
So why is a humble, self-effacing, let-the-work-speak-for-itself agency telling you this? Well, with all the recent talk of improv’s positive effect on our business, of course we’re as proud as peacocks to chime in with our own success story. It’s one that we, and our clients, have cherished for many years now. And even though our future is as unwritten as improv—we’re confident it’ll be hilarious.