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The Meme Game

A meme is not just viral content on the internet, it’s a religion for millennials. Every

morning they wake up and check their mobile phones to be greeted by memes. A daily

dose of memes are posted, shared and laughed at every single day. How can one forget

all the Dank Irrfan memes or the Salt Bae guy.

The brands that realise the power of memes know how to churn content according to the

latest trend. It shows a humorous side of the brand. Memes hit a common chord due to

which they are widely accepted by the audience and this helps in engagement.

Sponsored advertisements are skipped, hence brands had to understand what works and

adapt to it. Memes are interesting and memorable pieces of content. When brands adapt

meme culture into their social media, users learn about the brand and the memes

shareability increase brand awareness.

Getting into the meme game:

Memes can be created from scratch or brands can piggyback on existing memes that are

in trend. The ‘If you don’t love me at my’ meme was piggybacked by a number of brands

including Pepsi and Cisco. The twitter page of Mumbai Police is commendable as it tries

to incorporate pop culture references to reach its audience. However, brands need to

keep in mind that a meme can either be a hit or a complete miss.

Hitting the Bulls-eye:

Brands need to keep in mind that memes work when people actually understand what it

means. They need to use the language that the millennials are familiar with. However, if

you try too hard to be cool it can be off-putting. They also need to make sure that they

don’t take themselves seriously. Memes work because of their humour, they are bound

to be silly and ridiculous. Only then will it resonate with the audience. While keeping the

language in mind, the looming terror of people not understanding still prevails but

memes are crafted for the niche audience who understand it. Memes work when they are

sizzling hot. No one wants to see a meme that has lost its spice. Meme culture is like the

local train, you need to catch it fast or wait for the next one.

The sixth season of Game of Thrones was successfully turned into a meme campaign by

a number of major brands. The luxury brand Gucci also took the meme train to engage

its audience, but it was subjected to criticism as some people felt that it was in bad

taste, keeping the brand’s personality in mind while others thought it was an amazing

move and showed a quirky side of the brand.

One fundamental thing that brands need to keep in mind is that memes are only for

generating engagement, they cannot be a substitute to quality content. While memes

are good form of momentary hype, brands need to keep their daily content engaging

too. They can harness the power of memes because it is topical and strikes a chord with

your followers, while pushing out content that is relevant to their brand. Because while

memes will get you quantitive engagement, a brand’s content will be rewarded with

qualitative engagement.


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