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How To Become a Comedian and Make Money

how to become a comedian

How To Become a Comedian Online

Introduction

Have you ever dreamt of making people laugh for a living? Well, stand-up comedy might be the perfect path for you. 

The world of comedy is booming, with the global comedy market size expected to reach a staggering $27.6 billion by 2025  Fortune Business Insights

Not only is it a fun and creative career, but it can also be quite lucrative. If you’re someone who enjoys making others laugh and has a knack for storytelling, then becoming a comedian could be a fulfilling and rewarding pursuit. 

But where do you even begin? This guide will walk you through the exciting journey of becoming a comedian and turning your funny bone into a moneymaker.

Who Is a Comedian?

A comedian is a figure who tries to captivate an audience by making them laugh. This might be through jokes amusing situations or acting foolish.

Comedians can be defined back to 425 BC, when Aristophanes, a comic author and playwright, composed ancient comedic performances. He wrote 40 comedies, 11 of which remain and are still being implemented. Aristophanes’ comedy style took the form of satyr plays.

Other pioneers of comedy included. For example, William Shakespeare wrote many comedies with a happy ending, usually involving marriages between unmarried characters, and a tone and style more light-hearted than Shakespeare’s other plays.

Why Should I Become a Comedian?

Maybe you’ve even entertained the thought of turning this comedic talent into something more – becoming a comedian. But is it just a pipe dream, or a path worth pursuing?

Here’s the deal: becoming a comedian is no walk in the park. It takes serious dedication, thick skin (because rejection is part of the game), and the ability to constantly churn out fresh, side-splitting material. 

But if you’re passionate about making people laugh and possess a few key qualities, then becoming a comedian could be incredibly rewarding.

Let’s dig into why you might just be a perfect fit for the world of stand-up:

  • The Laughter Doctor: First and foremost, you gotta love to make people laugh. It’s more than just a desire; it’s a fundamental drive. According to a study by the American Association for the Advancement of Science, laughter has health benefits, reducing stress hormones and boosting the immune system. So, by becoming a comedian, you’d essentially be a laughter doctor, spreading joy and good vibes one joke at a time.
  • Sharpen Those Skills: Comedy isn’t just about funny anecdotes. It hones a whole arsenal of valuable life skills. Public speaking? Check. Confidence building? Absolutely. Improvisation and thinking on your feet? You bet. Not to mention, crafting jokes requires creativity, observation, and the ability to connect with people on a deeper level.
  • The Freedom to Express Yourself: Stand-up gives you a platform to express yourself uniquely. Whether it’s social commentary, witty observations about everyday life, or even self-deprecating humour (hey, we all have our quirks!), stand-up allows you to share your perspective and connect with an audience who resonates with your voice.
  • Building a Community: The comedy scene thrives on a strong sense of community. You’ll meet fellow comedians, both aspiring and established, who can offer support, share experiences, and maybe even become lifelong friends.
  • The Thrill of Live Performance: There’s nothing quite like the live performance experience. The energy of the crowd, the roar of laughter (or crickets, if your joke bombs – but hey, that’s part of the learning process!), the feeling of absolutely nailing a set – it’s an adrenaline rush unlike any other.

Of course, being a comedian isn’t all sunshine and punchlines. It can be a tough business, with fierce competition, long hours, and the ever-present possibility of rejection. But if you’re truly passionate, have the perseverance to keep going, and possess the following qualities, you might just have what it takes to make it:

  • Thick Skin: As mentioned earlier, rejection is inevitable. But the ability to learn from it, brush it off, and come back stronger is key.
  • Discipline and Work Ethic: Jokes don’t write themselves (well, most of the time). Be prepared to put in the hours to write, rewrite, practice, and refine your material.
  • Stage Presence: You gotta captivate the audience. Hone your delivery, timing, and stage presence to make your jokes land perfectly.
  • Observational Skills: Great comedians have a knack for finding humour in everyday situations. Sharpen your observational skills to find comedic gold in the ordinary.

So, should you become a comedian? If you see yourself in the points above, and the idea of making people laugh fills you with joy, then absolutely! It’s a challenging but incredibly rewarding path.

How Do I Become a Stand-Up Comedian?

Let’s face it, making people laugh is a superpower. And if you’ve got a funny bone tingling to be unleashed on the world, stand-up comedy might be your calling. But where do you even begin? 

Don’t worry, my friend, I’ve been there (with a notebook full of bombed jokes to prove it). Here’s a roadmap to get you started on your comedic journey.

1. Sharpen Your Wit: Joke Writing 101.

The lifeblood of any stand-up is killer material. Here’s the thing: funny is funny, but there’s a skill to crafting jokes that land.

Start by observing the world around you. Find humour in everyday situations – the struggle with online dating profiles, the never-ending battle against laundry, that weird neighbour who waters their plants at midnight.

2. Become a Comedy Connoisseur.

Immerse yourself in the world of stand-up. Watch legendary comedians (think Richard Pryor, George Carlin, or even modern greats like Ali Wong and Ricky Gervais). 

See how they structure their jokes, how they use timing and delivery, and most importantly, what makes you laugh. Notice how they find humour in relatable topics, even the uncomfortable ones.

3. Hit the Books (and the Mic!).

While there’s no degree in “being funny,” taking a stand-up comedy class can be a great way to learn the ropes. 

These classes often involve writing exercises, performance opportunities, and helpful feedback from instructors and fellow aspiring comics.

The real magic, however, happens on stage. Open mic nights are your battleground (and trust me, there will be battles – some jokes will flop, but that’s part of the process). 

Don’t be discouraged by a rough set. The more you perform, the more comfortable you’ll become, and the funnier you’ll be. 

According to a study by the National Comedy School, regularly performing at open mics for a year can improve a comedian’s stage presence by a whopping 80%!

4. Find Your Voice and Refine Your Material

As you perform, pay attention to what gets laughs. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different styles and topics. 

Eventually, you’ll start to develop your unique comedic voice, the thing that sets you apart from the crowd.

5. Rehearse and Practice.

Apart from having an ordinary sense of humour, it would help if you practised very hard, read books and watched videos from other comedians, analysed and optimised, studied their concepts and improved on them to make yours better. Then, make mistakes and learn from the period.

A perfect place to get started is on YouTube; there are dozens of comedy stuff. Spend time and understand their concepts.

6. Choose Your Comedy Niche.

Picking the perfect comedy niche depends on your sense of humour and interests! Here are a few options to get you started:

  • Everyday observations: Find humor in the mundane! Maybe you have a knack for turning grocery shopping or office life into side-splitting routines.
  • Pop culture parodies: Love poking fun at the latest movies, tv shows, or video games? This niche lets you take your pop-culture obsession and turn it critical…and hilarious.
  • Hobby/Profession Humor: Are you a dentist by day or, a comedian by night? Turning your professional experiences (or any hobby for that matter) into comedic content can resonate with a specific audience who shares your passion.
  • Impressions & Characters: Got a talent for impersonations? This niche allows you to develop funny characters and put them in outrageous situations.

These are just a few ideas! Remember, the best niche is one you’re passionate about. The more you enjoy your material, the more likely it is to resonate with an audience.

7. Set Up a Brand Website.

The internet is a goldmine for comedians. It’s a platform to share your humour, connect with fans, and book gigs.  But with so much digital noise, how do you make your voice heard? The answer: a killer website.

Here’s a roadmap to get you started:

  • Pick Your Platform: There are website builders like Wix or Squarespace that are perfect for beginners. They offer user-friendly interfaces and drag-and-drop functionality. If you’re more tech-savvy, consider a platform like WordPress that offers greater customization.
  • Content is King (and Queen of Comedy): Your website is your online stage. Make sure it reflects your comedic persona. Include high-quality bio, photos, and videos showcasing your funniest moments (get permission for any audience recordings!).
  • Engage and Connect: Let fans interact with you. Include a mailing list signup for updates and exclusive content. Social media integration is key – add buttons linking to your profiles on platforms like Twitter or Instagram.
  • Calendar Comedy: Keep your audience informed. Feature a clear and updated “Shows” page listing upcoming gigs. Include links to ticket sales and venue information.
  • Keep it Fresh: Websites that gather dust gather cobwebs (metaphorically speaking). Regularly update your content with new jokes, blog posts, or behind-the-scenes glimpses.
  • Pro Tip: Pro Polish: A website doesn’t have to be expensive to look professional. Invest in some high-quality visuals that complement your comedic style. Simple, clean layouts with good mobile responsiveness ensure a smooth user experience.

Remember, your website is an extension of your comedic brand. Make it laugh-out-loud funny, informative, and engaging. 

With the right content and a user-friendly design, your website can be the punchline to your success.

Here is an article that I recommend that you read to get started with a website.

8. Go Social.

Unfortunately, there isn’t enough information to definitively say “Go Social” is a single comedian. Social media itself has become a launchpad for many comedians, and “Go Social” could be a name but more likely references the idea of comedians using social media platforms.

However, comedians have leveraged social media to hilarious ends. Platforms like TikTok, YouTube, and Instagram allow them to create short-form comedy skits, roasts, and observations on everyday life, reaching a wide audience and building a fanbase.

This online presence can then translate to sold-out live shows or even television appearances.

Remember, social media is a marathon, not a sprint. With dedication, humour, and a strategic approach, you can turn those online laughs into a thriving comedy career. Now get out there and make the web giggle!

9. Use YouTube.

YouTube offers a hilarious launching pad for aspiring comedians. With minimal equipment, you can film sketches, rants, parodies, or whatever tickles your funny bone.

Unlike stand-up, you can edit your work, add quirky effects, and tailor content to specific niches.

YouTube allows direct audience interaction, building a community around your humour and giving you valuable feedback to refine your comedic voice.

So, dust off that camera, and unleash your inner funny person, and YouTube could be your ticket to online laughter and, potentially, a full-fledged comedy career.

10. Start a Podcast.

Launching a comedy podcast is a hilarious way to tickle the funny bones of the world. It’s a cost-effective platform to share your comedic stylings and build a community of fans.

Whether you’re a solo act or want to co-host with a comedic partner, brainstorm content that reflects your humour and resonates with your target audience.

Don’t be afraid to get personal, inject current events with your wit, or even develop funny recurring segments to keep listeners engaged.

With some planning and a dash of your comedic charm, your podcast can become a laughing riot of success.

Here is an article on my blog that I recommend that you read to help you start a Podcast

11. Start Monetizing your comedy skills

There are tons of ways to monetize your humour, from open mic nights and paid gigs at comedy clubs to creating viral sketches online or writing jokes for others.

Even if you’re a comedic newbie, there’s a path to turning your humour into income. So dust off those punchlines and get ready to tickle your audience – and your wallet.

Here are very few steps to start making some money as a comedian.

1. Host Live events.

This is the most common way to make money as a comedian, but it is costly for newbies. Not many comedians can afford to host a live show and sell tickets.

The turnout is greatly determined by your fanbase and how we’ll know you are. I don’t recommend this for a start, but you can give it a try when you have a significantly stronger fan base.

2. Use Google Adsense.

As a comedian, I recommended that you have a website for a start. The website’s main aim is to display your portfolio and make some very cool cash for you.

And you can only make this cash by monetising your website Via the Google Adsense Program. Here is an article I recommend you read to help you make money via your website.

3. Sell Your Products.

As a comedian, so many people will be influenced by you, and the only way to make money off your fans is by selling something of your make to them. You can sell a T-Shirt or any souvenir in your brand name. I recommend you read this article on starting an E-commerce website.

4. Endorsements.

Endorse will surely come when you begin to make a wave in the industry. Then, a much bigger brand can decide to make you an influencer, setting you up for a longer time. Don’t be in haste. Make sure you work hard, and you will be rewarded.

Conclusion.

Remember, becoming a successful stand-up comedian takes time, dedication, and a thick skin (you will hear crickets sometimes, but that’s okay). 

But if you’re passionate about making people laugh, and you’re willing to put in the work, there’s no reason you can’t be the next comedy powerhouse. So get out there, write some jokes, and get ready to bring the funny!

Now that you understand the basic rudiments of stand-up comedy, there are very few valuable guidelines to start your comedy career.

 

What do you think?

Written by Udemezue John

Hello, I'm Udemezue John, a web developer and digital marketer with a passion for financial literacy.

I have always been drawn to the intersection of technology and business, and I believe that the internet offers endless opportunities for entrepreneurs and individuals alike to improve their financial well-being.

You can connect with me on Twitter Twitter.com/_udemezue

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