The importance of memes in communication stems from the ability of an image to connect with the audience and in turn multiply and expand its concept.
Memes represent a form of interaction between the target audience of a brand that undoubtedly becomes an object of study. For this reason, in this article, we explain what a meme is and why it has become an important means of communication for social networks.
We also recommend reading: Advantages and disadvantages of modern communication
What is a meme?
The term meme derives from the Greek word “mimema” which means that which is repeatable or easy to imitate. So a meme is a message that is used through an image, gif or video that contains an encrypted message. This is usually modified multiple times from its original format.
The main function that memes have is to convey a humorous message or idea that is born through a situation that can generate anguish or uncertainty.
The term was introduced by Richard Dawkins and his book “The Selfish Gene.” In parallel to the reproduction of genes, memes operate in the same way as they reproduce massively but instead on a biological level, on a social and cultural level.
Influence of memes at a psychological level on individuals
The appearance of memes has been created in users that release of anguish and anxiety through humorous and sarcastic humor. It is the way users have found to live with uncertainty and events that occur on a social, political and global level.
If we talk about the different forms of learning, one of these is repetition learning. The meme appears spontaneously in a massive way on social networks. The most surprising thing is that not only in its original version but in a thousand more replicas.
By mentioning the influence of memes on a psychological level or what effects it causes, we can reach the following conclusions:
The repetition of learning of individuals through memes can help lessen the anxious burden that real-life possesses, but also the need to feel part of a guild. Or even generate a distortion of a central concept.
For example, there are memes that refer to depression. In this wave of memes the term “sadboy” or “sadgirl” was created which seemed to be pleasant and accepted. This is to sublimate that being depressed after all “is not so bad” and that having constant ideas about killing yourself can be fun.
Or worse, mistaking negative emotions for actually suffering from clinical depression.
If we go beyond Psychology and introduce Psychiatry, memes can characterize a delusional idea. Sure, this is only if it is not accepted by a group of users. In Psychopathology it is recognized as “group paranoia” where this delusional idea is reinforced by another group of users.
How to use and enhance them in communication
Memes are a source of information that has different types of interpretation. Therefore, you have to be very careful towards which sector you are going to introduce a meme in an advertising or communication campaign.
In the sectors in which the implementation of memes will have a sure and positive impact are the following:
- Sale of printed shirts.
- Blog with humor or news theme.
But … How do you know whether to implement memes in your communication strategy ?:
- Know your audience: Constantly evaluating your audience lets you know if implementing memes will give your strategy the effectiveness you expect. For this you can ask questions on your social networks whether or not to add memes.
- Do not substitute: It is necessary to understand and interpret that memes will only create hooks, but they will not replace strategies. So your content also has to remain of quality.
- Plan them ahead of time: As we have mentioned throughout this article, the importance of memes in communication depends on your intention. Therefore, you have to be very careful when introducing them so as not to create confusion or convey the opposite message to what we wanted to say.
- Investigate ahead of time: To be a trend it is important to know what you are talking about and start from there in the creation of the meme.
- Understand the humor of your audience: It is important to analyze the way in which your target audience interacts, so you can find the type of humor they use.
- Choose the right channels: The digital media where it is most common to use a meme are social networks such as: Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
Advantages and disadvantages of memes
The importance of memes in communication arises because there are positive factors that make them remain visible on social networks:
Advantages of memes
If the memes did not have any benefit in the users, their diffusion would not be so simple. For this reason, we mention some of its advantages:
Remember that users are in constant search of instant happiness. Through humor, memes are part of everyday life to reduce negative emotions.
Belong to a group
The human being is bio-psycho-social and has the need to feel that he belongs to something or someone. Through the emotions and thoughts embodied in the memes, the user can feel that they are part of something.
Create new circles of friends
Memes unite and it is that if you have these interests in common you can form friendships through the web that you did not imagine could happen.
Promote products or services
The importance of memes in communication through social networks is that if they are used properly, an advertising campaign with great impact can be created.
Disadvantages of memes
Not everything is usually positive, although the importance of memes in communication has a great impact, there are characteristics that are not so positive such as:
For some representatives, memes are a threat because there are more and more tools to create memes and everyone can do it. Freedom of expression can become a disadvantage since there are no filters of what should or should not be mentioned.
They promote cyberbullying or harassment through the internet
Any person or public figure can be used to create a meme and there will be no one who can stop it. There is no control over the content of memes to be published.
Inappropriate or misspelled vocabulary
In memes, the writing loses its original meaning, so it is very common to observe misspelled words, capital letters, small letters and in some cases obscene language.
Tools to create memes
Have you read the article and after all you want to use memes in your communication strategy? We mention some tools that can help you in creating them:
This tool has a directory of memes that may be trending. The material found here is regularly exported from Reddit.
You just need to open the desired image and add a text layer to it to create a meme. Select a font thickness that is suitable for the image you have chosen as the meme format.
This platform has images of the memes that are in trend already created. You just have to click on the image and create a different text to start spreading a new meme.
The options to create memes in Canva is exclusive to users who have iPhone. The variety of images that you can create in Canva for free and paid, allows you to create dynamic memes for social networks.
Conclusion of the importance of memes in communication
In conclusion, memes have become a visual medium with a message that generates an impact on social networks. For this reason, team leaders have thought about including memes in digital marketing strategies. After reading this article. Do you understand the importance of its use?