Make sure you get an early laugh. Here is a wonderful example from Luis von Ahn:

An easy way to get laughs in your next presentation is to use funny images and video. Some great examples here by Amy Cuddy:

At the time of writing Creativity expert, Ken Robinson has the most viewed and popular talk on TED with over 28M views. His talk challenges the way we’re educating our children and champions a radical rethink of our school systems, cultivating creativity and acknowledging multiple types of intelligence. Make no doubt about it, it is a serious topic but its masterful delivery is laced with humorous stories and anecdotes.



Mary Roach’s talk about female orgasm generated more laughs per minute then the funniest movie ever made, on a laughs per minute basis.

Airplane! – 3 laughs/minute vs Mary at 3.4 laughs/minute. Yes these numbers are loose, are meant to be tongue and cheek, don’t factor in an allowance for the varied running times, do not allow for for level of laughter generated (and I am sure the movies generate bigger, more laugh out loud lines) but the underlying point is there for all to see. Top TED speakers are using humor and some extremely well.