What Is Really In a Meme?
A meme, which is short for the Greek word mimeme, is a reference to imitation. That’s exactly what the modern meme does because it is an imitation of how society is viewed. Some memes are funny, some are inspirational, and some are barely coherent, but they all have one thing in common: they are a method of spreading relevant cultural information. Dating back to the 1870’s and the greeting cards of Harry Frees, there is more than a century of experience behind every meme that is posted today. Just don’t tell that to Grumpy Cat.
Modern Memes Can Be Almost Anything
The classic meme might be of a cute animal or a person with a certain expression their face, but the modern meme can be virtually anything. GIF files, photos, commercials, scenes from television shows or movies, videos, comics, and even commercials can be made into memes. Just take a look at what Kmart has been able to do with the phrase “Ship My Pants!” Because people are so visually orientated, the modern meme really is the best way to be able to effectively communicate a thought or idea to a large population.
What Makes a Meme Appealing?
The most appealing aspect of a meme is the image itself. It has to be able to connect to a wide range of people in order for them to feel like they relate to it and want to share it. Though people may look to inspire others through a meme, humor is more likely to make a meme appealing to the most people. Even if the joke isn’t original, if the picture is, the meme is more likely to be shared than an original bad joke. Post a meme during peak viewing times on any platform and if it is good, people will look, laugh, and share.
There Is Money In a Good Meme
Whether it is LOLcats, Rebecca Black, or Grumpy Cat, there is a massive amount of money that can be made through a good set of memes. I Can Haz Cheezurger generates as many hits as the New York Times. Rebecca Black made over $1 million from a song that was mostly annoying, somewhat catchy, and had everyone talking. Grumpy Cat has official pages generating advertising revenue, a movie deal in the works, and even children’s books being written about him. People may write off memes, find them irritating, or hate them with a passion, but they everyone interacts with them in some way.
What Will Your Meme Be?
There may be no greater free marketing ploy in the world today than a good meme. To make a good meme, you’ve got to combine humor, a great image, and an effective way to call people to click, share, tweet, or pin your meme to their own page. When you can do that, your branding can be spread in an online version of word of mouth advertising that can convert better sales than other outbound marketing efforts. In focusing on the art of imitation, we really have created our own art form that can help make people aware of who we really are.