Scott Blum's background as a comedian and his use of humor in building relationships with audiences


  • Scott's faux author persona and his collection of fake book covers
  • Using humor in the corporate world to address sensitive topics
  • Customizing comedy to specific audiences through research and incorporating their language and experiences
  • Making presentations about the audience rather than oneself
  • The importance of being in the moment and improvising
  • Challenges of improvisation and uncertainty in performances
  • Transitioning to virtual performances during the pandemic and maintaining energy without immediate audience feedback
  • Professionalism in virtual presentations, including background, attire, and engagement with the camera
  • The connection between laughter and effective communication in the corporate world


Listen to this conversation with Scott Bloom here













Excerpts from this conversation with Scott Bloom on the podcast, Your Intended Message


And we start to build a relationship. And comedy is all about building that relationship.

Now Scott, you you have you have years of experience as a as a comedian, standup comedian, a game show host, emcee And you. Believe you're your strongest tool in your toolbox is your humor. Where how do you how do you find humor and how do you use it without offending people?

Right. You know, so I've been I've been performing comedy at corporate events for 25 plus years now. And my act when I did standup, I haven't done standup in 20 plus years, but when I did stand up, my act was clean to begin with. But because I have a business background and I had done sales for my dad in college, I sort of knew what the business environment was all about. So I particularly crafted material that was, you know, business oriented, you know, stuff that they can relate to.

And, you know, whether it's, you know, their acronyms or the language, the buzzwords, the catchphrases everyone uses. So I built my humor around stuff that they can relate to. And then what I found out was a nice model where I can create a template, a comedic template that I can infuse their language, their acronyms, their material, so that it seems customized especially for them. And that's what I find out with comedy, is they have to be able to relate to the material. And I was never one to just randomly talk about, you know, just observational things. It always had sort of a satiric edge to it. And what's kind of interesting about my comedy is that there's an element of truth in it. And a lot of times you don't know if it's true or not. And that creates that little that little comedy pocket right there, you know, where people I might talk about how I speak 18 different languages, I don't. But when I start to speak them, they're like, well, maybe he doesn't.

But it turns out he's, you know, I'm just speaking in an accent or I'm just using certain words. So I try to customize the humor to the to the audience. And it's a great way for me to connect with them, relate to them. And as you know, humor is is, you know, laughing in comedy. It's an emotional experience. And that's what I believe every speaker needs to do is make that emotional connection. I use humor and comedy to do that.

And do you is do you find the corporate world just so full of of of material to laugh at?

Well, there's definitely lots of stuff. You know what's great is I can say a lot of things that are on the attendees minds that maybe the executives or the leadership team can't can't talk about. So I can reference things that are in their life that they're their would would be making fun of maybe on their own, you know, with each other. So I there's definitely a lot of stuff in the in that corporate world.

And that's why it allows me to, you know, really have these these these connections with the audience because I become sort of an insider. I do a lot of research beforehand, get as much material as I can. And they they appreciate. I mean, that's one of the things I talk about in my my keynote is making an effort for another finding a way to connect with them. And by talking about the things they they experience that they know, it doesn't look like, oh, I just showed up with this bag of tricks I use for every company. I made this specific for you, so they appreciate the time I put in and we start to build a relationship. And comedy is all about building that relationship.

Curious, the comedy that you use when when you're speaking for a corporate event, how might the people there take ideas from that and take it back to the workplace? How might they how might they harness your comedy?

Yeah, I mean, it's I think almost harnessing the process.

You know, they see especially salespeople, they see for some reason we like this guy. We're connecting this guy. What what is he doing that makes us want to, you know, listen to him. We're enjoying what he's having to say. And it's because I've I've done that sort of research and have material and and they see the effort. And what I'm hoping is that they see that, oh, if you make it about the other person and, you know, with comedians in the early years of growing as a comedian, it's all about you. You know, in fact, let's face it, most performers, it's kind of all about me and I and I write in my phone book covers. I write a lot of narcissism type books. They're my I mean, there's no let me see. Yeah. Like this one. I know they can't see it, but this one is called Egos are for Winners. Putting narcissism at the top of your to do list as you send everyone else to the bottom.

And there is a you know, a performance can be very, you know, self centered, single minded thinking on stage. Hey, it's all about me getting the laughs. But when you take the attention off of you as any presenter, as any speaker and you put it on the audience, they can feel that because what it does is allows you to be less self conscious, allows you to be more in the moment, and they can, they can feel that and they feel that also by the material that you're presenting and how you're relating to them. So I think that's an important thing with, with, with presenting and building that relationship because it's all I mean, as a speaker, it's all about building that relationship. And some speakers do it very well. Some people have that canned presentation. And even though they might have been on a ride where things were going well, you know, there's a point where they can kind of feel like you're phoning it in. So it's really important to be in that moment and with comedy especially.

Scott, you. You've been a keynote speaker. You're an event emcee, game show host. Those are different skill sets, I imagine. What? Where how do you transfer from one to another? How do you connect with people differently, perhaps, or or what are the challenges?

You know, most of my you know, I might have mentioned this when we were talking before that, you know, I got into this business, into the corporate side as a game show host. You know, I was a comedian. They wanted someone who was able to adlib, be on their feet, be spontaneous. So that is the core of everything I do is trying to be in the moment. You prepare, you prepare and and then you're in the moment. So it allows me to not only create comedy that I've presented, but also know that are prepared, but also things that happen in the moment. So even in my my keynote, which is written, but there's lots of rooms for improvisation, there's a lot of audience interaction and there's the moments where I can actually literally connect with the audience that they see.

Things are being created, you know, in the moment. You know, when I first started doing standup, I think I started back in 86. So I've been doing I've been doing comedy a long time. There was a comedian who said to me that the material, all the material that's written looks like it has to be made up just on the spot. And ironically, the stuff that is improvised looks like, Oh, that's written. And it's that kind of keeping the audience off balance. Like, I mean, everyone knows at some level the the comedians that's presenting their material they've worked on, it's written, but it feels like they're just coming up with it. And that's what that's what makes it alive. So whether it's a keynote, whether it's hosting a game, it's about about that energy that give and take that flow between the the presenter or the performer on stage and the audience. So I think they're all sort of somewhat connected.

Now. I'm curious about the, the improv part, that part where you need to be in the moment because you don't necessarily know what's going to happen next.

You, you, you don't know what the audience is going to do or say. How do you get yourself through those those uncertain moments where you're between the trapeze?

Well, the net is the preparation. So if you're prepared, you have everything at your at your disposal. You can you can go left, you can go right. You pretty much know the direction you're going. 

And as I said, even stuff that might even sound a little improvisational, I might have said it at some other time. So you create that that sort of edge, but you're never going out in an area with what I do in improv and especially in an in corporate environment, I always know the lane, the path I'm going down. And so I might move a little to the left, I might move to the right, but I'm not going to I'm not going to go off and exit and go somewhere where I haven't got gone before. 

So I'm always in control of what's coming, you know, what's going to come up next.