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Guest Column: Memes are the key to virality: Vinay Singhal, WittyFeed

02-June-2017
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Guest Column: Memes are the key to virality: Vinay Singhal, WittyFeed

The phrase ‘Change is the only constant’ is an accepted adage in current brand promotion exercises. New-age marketers understand the need for constant change. The current wave of change sweeping the world of marketing and brand promotion is the need for comprehensive brand integration with digital marketing platforms.

New-age consumers are very comfortable with all kinds of digital forms, memes being one of the latest entrants to entertain them. The new-age consumer is convinced with the concept of sarcasm and doesn’t mind laughing out loud.

Savvy marketers started exploring the meme route to gain recall for their brands. They wove their brand cleverly in a funny or sarcastic meme. The customer got his expected laugh and also got to know the brand wherever it was aptly integrated. And that became the genesis of branding through memes in India. Memes have become a way to make people laugh while injecting them with the idea of the brand to develop a liking for it. It is a simple strategy indeed—‘Give them what they want'—but with the underlying herculean task of understanding and incorporating of what they long for.

Social media has become the most appropriate platform for an assured delivery of ideas to the target audience. And, the reach of social media isn’t limited to just the new generation. The entire world is embracing this phenomenal medium. Slowly, it’s becoming a ‘World of, World by & World for the Social Media’. No longer is the medium a thing for just the millennials to keep themselves updated and connected; almost everyone is using it for various for purposes. Some use it to create awareness for social causes, others to raise funds; governments use it to promote public schemes, and of course, now brands are using it to promote their products and services. It is almost like a present-day democracy. Social media is indeed a new medium!

The usage of memes for various purposes is ruling social media these days. Humour and sarcasm are ruling the roost, as they are more infectious than a traditional story. As a result of their infectiousness, memes are the key to virality. And in this world of see-through locked doors, the brand with the key is the king.

To penetrate the minds of their users, brands are taking to every platform that the users are on. The mobile media has further given a fillip to the medium and route as people are always online and there is always a conversation going on with that small device in their palms.

Virality has become a phenomenon for digital marketing and brands are using this platform aggressively as part of their integrated marketing mix. Digital evolution has forced brands to take different marketing routes using the power of social media, mobile and video. As the industry is changing rapidly, the traditional method of marketing with new-age integrated services, i.e. content marketing are in vogue. Content marketing uses unique ideas to bring about an internet firestorm and keeps it alive and kicking. Virality is the amalgamation of the likability factor of the content for the consumer, the content’s connect with the shared emotions and the strategic efforts the distribution channel is taking to get maximum exposure. 

Trolls and memes initially started with a simple motive to entertain people. In a very short time, their motive extended to ideas for branding. Each brand has its own ways to engage people through memes. It’s like a battle named social media, where the brands are the warriors and the memes are their weapons. So, how would one win this battle? Let me share a few ideas on making a meme go viral:

1.       Know what is trending and whether it relates to your brand

Everyone wants to top the charts and have a desirable image and respect in the society. When your society is social media, you have to be trending to achieve all of this. Money does count, but what counts above all is how recognized you are and how viral you can be. Here, the content marketing companies help brands in reaching their target groups with social media integration.

2. Understand the people’s demand

Trends are transient. Image is stable and important. A particular image can be created only by penetrating the target audiences’ psyche, by understanding what things bore them and what might amuse them. The play of words along with the image creates a connect and thus the perception stays long in the target audiences’ recall.

3.     Keep bringing something new and don’t hesitate to pitch new ideas to the audience

With seven billion brains on this planet we can never lack in new ideas. We do not even need a new invention every time. We just need to evolve existing ideas and breathe new life in them. Leverage the potential of social media as it offers opportunities, insights and the power to bring a dead concept/product back to life.

4. Use wittiness to make it as humorous as it can be (this is most important)

A brand can put together all the above-mentioned points and season it up with wittiness, and then let’s see who stops it from winning. Funny memes can be a long-lasting and important means for brands to maximize their consumer reach.

(The author is Co-Founder & CEO of WittyFeed)

Disclaimer: The views expressed here are solely those of the author and do not in any way represent the views of exchange4media.com

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