As the self-titled ChappellRoberts Meme Queens, meme-ing morning, noon and night, we thought it was about time we shared how our quirky little obsession has become a secret tool for success in the advertising industry.
What on Earth is a Meme?! (If you pronounce it mi-mi, just stop)
Memes have actually been around for longer than you’d think. Richard Dawkins coined the term back in 1976 as an element of culture passed from one individual to another. Like the similar columns on the Greek Parthenon and the Lincoln Memorial, memes exist in architecture, art, landscape, or as we recognize them nowadays, silly images with funny captions that go viral on the internet.
A Recipe for Success
Why are memes so popular? This is a question you’ve probably asked yourself, and one we know our agency seniors have been scratching their heads about. While there’s a vast range of memes, the formula is pretty simple:
1. Easy to consume – just a few simple words and very little thought needed to understand
2. Shareable – like it, share it, tweet it, blog it–you can literally post them everywhere
3. Familiar – always easy to identify with
4. Funny – any successful meme usually has an element of humor
5. Inclusive – memes create a community where people feel part of something
Three Main Ways to Use Memes
1. Staying relevant on social networks
Through native advertising, memes can help brands dominate the social media realm. Images or photo memes are known to gain quick likes and shares, giving brands an edge over the typical text post.
The infamous Oreo tweet during the Super Bowl XLVIII blackout shows how a simple meme can save millions of advertising dollars, far outperforming the expensive TV spots.
2. Value-added content
Funny or thought provoking memes on social channels provide great added-value content. Quick and entertaining for customers to consume, and faster than writing an entire post!
3. Boosts employee morale
From internal industry jokes to spicing up an agency-wide email, memes are a quick, fun way to let off steam and lighten the mood.
Here are some of our favorites:
When someone in the office won’t answer my emails:
At the end of a long work week:
Think Before You Meme
Firstly, always be sure you know the background of a meme before you make a terrible blunder like these brands. Apparently no one taught these social media managers the R-rated meaning behind Netflix and Chill. We love pizza and puppies, but this takes it too far:
Secondly, please stop using “bae” or people will make fun of you. The same goes for “fleek”.
Lastly, the memes you share might as well be coming out of your mouth as far as employers are concerned. Don’t wind up like former Red Sox pitcher, Curt Schilling, who was fired by ESPN this week for a meme he shared on Facebook.