Don’t Be So Meme!
PSA: Heads up, all video examples shown here (songs excluded) are brief but critical to your enjoyment or disdain for this week’s blog. So don’t skip them or you will miss half the fun.
As we roll out another edition of “Why Am I Even Talking About this?” aka “my poorly written blog” we shine a spotlight on those viral snippets that, admit it, you’ve chuckled at while scrolling your feed – memes! It doesn’t matter if it is wide-eyed kittens or iconic lines from TV shows, memes have not only invaded the intertubes but wriggled their way into marketing and persuasion.
But before we get rolling, let’s get one thing straight. Are you even saying “MEME” right? Here are some quick videos to ensure you are on the money rather than destined to become your own MEME.
DON’T DO THAT #1:
DON’T DO THAT #2:
If those are examples of what not to do, how do you do actually pronounce “MEME”?
DO THIS INSTEAD:
Ok, before we move on let’s do a quick recap of Wrong vs Right.
So, what is it about memes that draw us in? Is it because they become personal mantra, reminiscent of Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believing”?
Or because they become those pesky earworms we can’t shake, like Ylvis’ “The Fox (What Does The Fox Say?)”.
Sorry for the last song, it was utilized for emphasis.
Actually, pinning memes to those tunes might be a tad off-mark. Memes resonate for a multitude of reasons, not just one. Here is a breakdown of a few. Ready?
Relatability & Shared Knowledge:
Memes often reflect our shared experiences and universal “ahas!” When a meme mirrors a thought or feeling we’ve had, there is an immediate nod, physically or in our minds, with a sense of “Oooh, that’s spot on!”
Simplicity & Digestible:
In today’s info-packed world, diving deep into topics feels like a luxury. Good thing the internet is here, with its promise of quick and easy content. Memes? They’re those bite-sized nuggets we can gobble down in a flash, kind of like those fun-sized candy bars most folks hand out on Halloween. But hey, props to the legends who dole out the full-sized 3 Musketeers! You guys ROCK!
Resonance (at least emotionally):
A well-crafted meme can evoke a range of emotions. It can trigger our emotions from laughter to nostalgia in a flash. It’s that emotional tug, which makes the message stick around in our memory bank longer.
Cultural Commentary & Satire:
Memes are like the cheeky commentators of our social norms, current events, and pop culture. They act like mirrors, reflecting society’s collective consciousness, at that very moment, making them simultaneously timely and timeless.
Virality & The Bandwagon Effect:
Who doesn’t want a VIP pass to the “in-crowd”? Although our definition of “in” might differ, there’s a universal urge to be out front when a meme starts making waves. It’s that need to share and flaunt our membership in the ever-elusive “cool kids club.”
By the way, speaking of the Cool Kids Club (yeah, looking at you, Red Whiskey Blog Readers), have you spread the word? I mean, it’s an exclusive circle, but I’ve got a hunch anyone you invite would qualify.
Humor as a Defense:
Humor can be our brain’s sneaky tool to cope with challenging situations and awkward moments. Do you ever remember a time where you were caught chuckling nervously when things got tense? That was your brain just doing its thing. Memes, with their dash of humor or sarcasm can help provide us a brief escape from our reality or life’s ever-present absurdities.
Our Mental Wires:
Our brains love and are wired to respond to visual stimuli. From a beautiful sunset to a charging elephant, our brains are ready to provide instant feedback. Now sprinkle a pithy little phrase or concept on top of a visual we can relate to, and you really got something.
This is one I personally aspire to. Being one of “those people.” “Those people” who don’t fall into line with the iPhone crowd. Rather than sending friends texts back with those prepended phrases and the same text like:
‘Emphasized “I just won the Powerball.”’
‘Loved “I am sharing it with you!”’
‘Disliked “Just kidding I am not sharing it with you.”’
I am always sending memes highlighting my feelings related to our topics in and effort to get a ‘Laughed at an image” back from the iPhone crowd.
Memes can sometimes act like echo chambers, amplifying and nodding along with our pre-existing beliefs and perceptions. Spot a meme that aligns with your worldview? And I bet you, like me, are more inclined to give it a thumbs up or a share.
“Great, how can we use memes in our marketing.”
In a nutshell? Memes aren’t just for giggles or to annoy those who don’t agree with you. They can help you build your brand’s character, build rapport with your audience, and amplify your message. By leaning into their charm, you not only showcase your brand’s authenticity but pave the way for potential customers to join the party through shares and interactions. So, don’t hold back – share those memes that resonate with your corporate image! And while you’re at it, spread the word about this blog. Who knows, you might just end up dancing it out like Napoleon Dynamite!
Till next time!