There seems to be a meme for almost every image, video, text, GIF, from cartoon characters, celebrity images, movie captions, and trendy events. You only need to make it humorous, relatable and convey the correct information.
But what is a meme, and how can you use it to develop your business?
According to the Oxford dictionary, a meme is an image, video, or piece of text that elicits humor prompting internet users to share it with others. Normally, different internet users will change the message on the meme to suit their needs and pass the information they want.
The use of memes in business development has grown immensely in the past five years. Today, most internet users spend almost half of their day on social media reacting, sharing, and commenting about funny memes. Internet users have significantly reduced their watch time for mainstream media, so TV commercials may fail to reach the expected audience.
The significance of using memes to promote your business
With the growth of meme culture, it is time for businesses to tap on the new trend to advertise brands and promote business. But like any other type of advertising, the use of memes has both advantages and drawbacks. The key to a successful meme advertisement is studying your target audience, keeping up with cultural and societal trends, and being creative.
The upside of using memes to promote your business
Anyone using social media is a witness that memes have taken over the internet and maybe the world. We make memes from literally any form of media, from political events to pet images or videos. As a business owner, you can use these memes and change the message to suit the information you want to pass to your audience. Memes are cheaper to promote your business than demanding and expensive mainstream ads such as TV commercials and billboards, and newspaper classifieds.
Secondly, memes have a better chance of reaching your target audience when positioned well. The younger generation rarely watches TV, listens to the radio, or reads a newspaper. Moreover, they won’t even click on a dull or sales ad on YouTube or Facebook. But a well-positioned and humorous meme will grab their attention, and you might have the chance to tell them about your business.
Thirdly, when your business uses memes to promote products or services, it’s an indication to consumers that you are in touch with the trends in society. For example, if you use a meme of a scene in a new TV show or movie, the target audience gets hooked, and as they look for the humor in the meme, they also get your message.
Lastly, the message on a meme is straightforward and memorable. Whether it is an image, GIF, or a video, you only need an attention-grabbing caption to drive the message home. An exciting and relatable meme will be shared among hundreds of internet users, thus expanding your reach.
The drawbacks of using memes for business development
Like any other form of advertisement, using memes has its drawbacks. For one, most memes that go viral are protected by copyright laws. You could face copyright infringement lawsuits for using some of these memes. Before creating a brand campaign with a third-party meme, always do due diligence to ensure it is free to use.
Secondly, the relevance of memes is ordinarily short-lived. For example, a meme about an eye-catching gown worn by a celebrity at a fashion event may lead to conversions when used around the time after the event. However, after five years, using the same meme may not resonate well with the target audience, and your campaign will not bring sales or impressions.
Lastly, some memes have deep meanings that only people who understand the context can get the message. Research the broad meaning of the meme to avoid controversial or memes that make fun of certain people or characters. If your meme campaign offends anyone, you risk being canceled or paying huge fines in lawsuits.
The internet age has shifted the attention of most consumers to the social media world. Using memes in the right way can scale up your business and help you reach your target audience. Meme advertising is cheap, creative, and shows customers you are in touch with cultural trends. However, ensure you understand the deep meaning of a meme before using it to avoid offending anyone. In addition, do due diligence to ensure a meme is free to use to avoid copyright infringement lawsuits.
Article first published at the Kenyan Enterprise