Are Memes and Silly Slang Postings on Social Media Hurtful to my Brand?

Memes are everywhere today, from social media to TV, and truth be told, who doesn’t love a good meme? They are like little inside jokes between a consumer and the brand, but only if you relate to the joke or it’s not outdated, which can take the fun out of them. Memes are an internet phenomenon defined as cultural items in the form of images, phrases, videos, etc., that are spread via the Internet and often altered creatively or humorously (SOURCE). Are memes and silly slang postings on social media hurtful to my brand?

Memes and silly slang postings on social media are meant to be relatable and provide amusing context for visuals, which on a side note, are almost always copyright protected. This type of content is flexible but familiar with current culture and trends, giving them a concise life cycle. For this reason, speaking the language of memes and slang is generally reserved for younger audiences; we’re not saying that non-millennials won’t understand, but chances are if you remember the Dancing Baby, which happens to be pre-internet, memes might not be the right tone of conversation you want for your brand.

One of the cardinal marketing rules is to know your audience, and if your target audience is who made the slang or meme popular via social media, then go for it. You will not only be keeping up with current trends but also will be staying true to your brand’s voice. Remembering to remain authentic as a brand vs. acting like a consumer will negate the challenge of staying relevant.

Ask yourself these questions before implementing a content marketing strategy that includes memes and silly slang postings.

  • Do you understand the nature of the meme? As a rule of thumb, if you don’t get the joke of a meme, it is probably not wise to use it to promote your brand. Besides, many memes can be taken offensively if directed toward the wrong audience.
  • Is the meme still popular? Posting an outdated meme closely resembles the embarrassment you feel when your dad attempts to talk in slang to your friends. Consider planning for posts vs. jumping on the bandwagon.
  • Would you use an emoji in the title of a content post? There is some thought that slang and memes are considered the same as using emojis. Too laid back for your brand? Steer clear of posting silly slang or memes.

Implementing memes or slang on your social media posts can creatively connect you to your audiences if done correctly; if not, they can hurt your brand.  At YCS Marketing, we consider your target audience and relevant life cycles of all social media and will help creatively grow your brand in the voice you want. For those who don’t remember or weren’t born yet, Dancing Baby was the first viral video of a diaper-clad baby dancing the Cha-Cha in 1996!

Connect with us @