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A B2B Marketer’s Guide to Leveraging Meme Marketing

by on October 1, 2021 in Advertising, Business, Lead Article, Lead story

B2B Meme Marketing: Millennials make up for 23% of the world’s population and Gen Z makes up for 32%. Collectively, Millenials and Gen Z make up for more than half of the world’s population. According to NYPost, Gen Z became the largest population in 2019. Conclusively, we can say that they will be the future decision-makers and they are nothing like the other generations we’ve marketed to.

While Gen Z and Millenials consume more digital and mobile media, around 69% of them deliberately avoid ads by skipping content and using ad blockers. So it doesn’t matter how powerful and eye-catching your ads are, they have trained their minds to skip them by default.

B2C and D2C brands already have social media and meme marketing in their DNAs but as Gen Z & Millennials move up on the corporate ladder, B2B marketers will have to learn the new tricks to target this demographic. And what better way to do so than meme marketing.

In this article, we are going to explore meme marketing, its importance, and the pairing of B2B and meme marketing.

Meme Marketing – An Introduction

Memes have become the official language of social media. It’s the language that Gen Z and Millennials use to communicate everything. You can follow a couple of meme pages and influencers to stay updated with everything around the world. Be it politics, cryptocurrency, opinions, movies or be it any kind of news, memers are on top of everything.

But where do memes and marketing converge? On the horizon of social media, brand narratives, and selling. When a brand uses a trending meme to communicate its narrative and uses it to market its products, services, expertise, etc., it can be called meme marketing.

Memers or marketers who use memes in their strategies call it an art and we completely agree. To take something as irrelevant as a cat and a woman shouting at someone, putting them together to convey a message and a feeling is no less than an art.

Here’s the anatomy of a good meme:

  • A pop-cultural reference
  • Relevancy
  • And a humorous slant

Even though it’s 2021, most of the brands correlate meme marketing with putting a branded spin on a trending meme and posting the same on their handles. It’s not meme marketing in its entirety.

Sure, it can be a great start to get recognized in the meme communities and step into the meme culture. But mistaking it as meme marketing can and will bring you disappointing results.

The keyword in the last sentence is results because meme marketing can and will bring results for your brand, you just have to know its worth and how to correctly use it to your advantage.

So, let’s explore what’s the actual worth of meme marketing. Why has it become such an integral part of marketing strategies in 2021?

Why Invest in Meme Marketing?

First things first, our brains process visual information 60,000 times faster than texts and even faster if the visual has a recall value to it. Like a famous scene from a movie or an iconic shape like McDonald’s two golden arches.

So, no matter how good your article is, a visual medium will always be received better by your audience.

Secondly, memes are everywhere. Instagram, Twitter, Reddit, LinkedIn (even though being a professional networking site, many people share memes from their profile), WhatsApp, TikTok, and more. Regardless of the platform, they get shared and reshared a lot. 55% of 15-35-year-olds send memes every week and around 30% of them every single day. Now that’s a lot of sharing, right?

What’s more astounding is that meme is becoming a more popular search term than Jesus.

According to Neil Patel, “Memes are very shareable and help people connect through humour. If done right, they make people feel part of an inside joke, and who doesn’t like to be the one in the know?”

So, even if you are in the B2B space where things are taken more seriously, using the power and relevancy of memes will be appreciated by your audience which is getting younger and younger as you read this article.

But the question is, how to utilize memes for your B2B company? It’s an interesting feat. Let’s explore!

B2B & Meme Marketing – A Strategy or a Meme Itself?

Memes are a modern way to add personality and a human element to a brand. They make brands more relatable and also make for a great tool to generate word-of-mouth marketing. So, memes are not limited to just adding humor to your content, they can also add depth to your brand.

The reason why there’s still some hesitation and reservations from B2B brands to add memes in their marketing campaigns is the relevancy. For example, if you are catering to high-end B2B financial institutes and accounting firms, then adding memes might do more harm than good since these businesses tend to be more formal.

On the other hand, a high-end business publication like Bloomberg frequently mentions Stonks on their social media and HubSpot, an inbound marketing software company, have been intelligently using memes to connect with the marketers around the world.

The marketing department of Marketo Engage, a lead management & account-based marketing software by Adobe, have taken meme marketing to the next level by using them to generate leads. The ad below got Marketo 40 form completions.

Even the big players like Warner Music Group can’t help but board the Meme marketing train. Last year, they acquired a marketing company named IMGN media for just under $100 million as reported by TechCrunch. IMGN Media owns one of the most influential meme pages called Daquan which currently has around 16.5m followers. 

But why did a music company invest in a random social media page? Well, here’s something to think over while you come up with your meme marketing strategies: IMGN’s campaign for Netflix called Tamborine earned them 16 million views with 5 posts.

In addition, according to top B2B sales trends in the UK, a third of B2B decision-makers consult LinkedIn, a well-known professional social networking platform. And still, only 21% of UK B2B sales reps have a social selling strategy.

If your audience is ready to add social to their sales funnel, what’s stopping you?

Our Take

While memes might come across as a child’s play, they are anything but that. Sure it is an unconventional marketing approach and a little risky, but when strategized and executed well, it can fetch more engagement and ROI than you can ever imagine.

Before we part our ways, here are a few short and quick tips you can keep in mind before getting started with meme marketing.

  1. Know your audience – we already gave an example of how wrong memes would be when catering to high-end accounting firms, so make sure to do social listening before investing time or resources in meme marketing.
  2. Be on time – there’s nothing worse than sharing a meme after its trend is gone. So, make sure to stay relevant and on time.
  3. Forget about the virality – don’t do meme marketing for the sake of going viral. Memes can and should be used to create a personality, add a human element, and create relatable content.

Author Bio:

Hazel Raoult is a freelance marketing writer and works with PRmention. She has 6+ years of experience in writing about business, entrepreneurship, marketing and all things SaaS. Hazel loves to split her time between writing, editing, and hanging out with her family.

B2B Meme Marketing

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