13 Examples of Meme Marketing + 4 Best Practices to Follow

90% of my social media feeds consist of memes.
These memes are usually shared by people I follow, but once in a while, a brand might post one and put their own spin on it. These are the brands I interact with most when it's done well.

This was once a trend that was reserved for Gen Z and Millennials, but has become a powerful way for brands to connect with their audience.

Let's discuss what meme marketing is and how to leverage it. We will also show you examples of brands that are doing it well.

What is meme marketing? What is meme marketing? Meme marketing uses memes to promote your brand's narrative. Memes are easy to share and can be a fun way to reach your audience.

Let's start with the basics of memes. They are ideas, behaviors, and concepts that are spread via the internet. Memes can be any media format: GIF, video or text-post.

The most successful memes spread like wildfire. Marketers want to capitalize on these viral pieces of creativity for their own marketing.

Meme marketing has another advantage: It requires very little effort. The majority of the work is already done. It's shared on social media, and has a clear idea. You just need to adapt the meme to fit your brand and hit "post."

Memes can also help to bring people together. They are not only tempting to comment and like them, but also to share them.

Let's now look at some brand memes that have been released into the wild after we've discussed the benefits of meme marketing.

Marketing examples using memes

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Black wojak memes began to spread on the internet in the fall 2020. It wasn't until December that the meme went viral. Users created their own versions of the hilarious meme.

Kai Collective was one.

This meme, which I am referring to particular because there are many variations of it, is simple. One Black girl meets another Black woman and they become friends.

Kai Collective created its own meme using this meme to promote its print top. They went beyond adding text to the meme and made it unique by adding their clothing.

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The cover of Drake's "Certified Lover Boy” album went viral instantly after it was released.

The artist had achieved his goal of creating a meme-able, cover. The public was quick to make their own.

The perfume brand included its product in the meme and also labeled each one to improve recall.

This is a great example for how to use a meme to have fun and also tie back to your brand.

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The best thing about Netflix's social media team? They are great at creating their own memes.

A brand may often use a meme to create a new image, or take an existing concept.

Netflix uses its vast media library to create funny memes such as the one shown above.

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Oprah Winfrey would be a complete meme list.

This one is from the highly-viewed special "Oprah With Meghan and Harry".

The iconic line, and possibly the most important follow-up interview question ever asked, "Was it silent or was silenced?" This image quickly became popular on social media.

It shows Winfrey looking away and raising her hands in disapproval.

Ruka Hair, a haircare brand, created their own meme to highlight a major problem for gel users.

Because memes are relatable, they're so popular. Think about your user persona when you are brainstorming meme ideas for your brand. What are their challenges? What are their strategies for overcoming these challenges?

Most likely, you'll find a funny and meme-worthy answer.

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Drake is the subject of many memes. This is likely what inspired Drake's latest album cover, which you can see above.

The original meme showed him rejecting or disliking the option presented to him, and then accepting the alternative he was presented.

This was actually a song video that the artist took while he was dancing. We'll save the origin story of this meme for another day.

Diamond Express Travels, a travel agency, uses the meme to emphasize a problem many travelers might have: The burden of planning your vacation and booking it yourself.

You should also pay attention to their logo addition.

Brands are encouraged to include their logo or name to a meme because they are so easily shared.

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This meme has been around for many years, and I've seen it come back to life several times.

You can see the whole picture. The man in the middle is distracted and walking past someone else while he is with someone.

Hydrop.io is an Indian water company that created this meme to show how their target audience views different types of water. They then go deeper into the idea by including a caption that highlights the health benefits of alkaline water.

Sometimes the meme speaks for it self. This is a great way to add to the message you are trying to convey to your audience.

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Sometimes one Oprah meme doesn't suffice.

Another example of the way that an interview attracted 17.1million viewers led to multiple memes for our pleasure.

Black Rooster Taqueria, a Mexican restaurant, chose a simple way to share its value proposition. Why settle for bland, cold flour tortillas when fresh, authentic corn tortillas are available?

This meme will help you learn a bit more about this brand and make you laugh.

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The Met Gala is the official meme generator.

You can expect to see many memes made from celebrities' celebrity looks at this star-studded event every year.

This one features Kendall Jenner's sister Kim Kardashian. It works in many contexts, including before-and-afters as well as light and dark, positives or negatives.

Mypsomagen, a biotech company, cleverly promoted Gutbiome+ using this meme.

A meme can make your audience laugh and want to engage with you brand.

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Bernie Sanders is another popular meme character.

He seems completely unmotivated at the 2020 presidential inauguration, even though he isn't on the internet.

Although I don't know what caused this meme, it became so popular that everyone began to change the ending of this sentence to suit their needs.

It is a great way for brands to communicate with their audience and ask them to do something.

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Any image can be made into memes, regardless of its quality or age. It can spread if one person on social media creates something humorous from it.

This meme comes from the 2002 Star Wars film "Episode II Attack of the Clones".

It depicts a conversation between two people, one saying something that brings joy to the other. They realize that it might not be so great afterall.

Purity Coffee is a coffee brand that educates its customers on a topic they might not be aware of, and also increases its own value.

Memes, as shown in the above example, are a great way to highlight problems that your brand addresses or helps solve.

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This meme is old but it's still a great one.

This meme is applicable to many situations, including solving cliffhangers in TV dramas and developing conspiracy theories.

Yappy, a pet store brand, pokes fun at its core customer, likely animal lovers with a constant desire for pets.

You can create memes that resonate with your audience by understanding your user persona. This will result in higher engagement rates.

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Make a meme if you don't see one that suits your brand. Telfar, a luxury purse brand, did exactly that.

They used two still frames from "White Chicks" (2004) and replaced part of their original line with their own.

It works perfectly in this situation and is an excellent example of how you can leverage existing media to your own benefit.

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Twitter's most popular phrase of 2020 was "How It Started...How it is Going".

It is a great meme because it can last for a long time unlike other memes that have a shorter shelf life. Brands can participate in this trend to tell their origin story.

Anima Iris, a luxury purse brand, shared photos of its CEO from the beginning stages to today.

This trend will allow your brand to connect to your audience and invite them to learn more about your brand.

Meme Marketing Tips: Stay true to your brand. Be respectful. Be respectful of the unofficial rules for memes.

Meme marketing can be a great way to create community and possibly increase brand awareness. This is why you need to do it correctly.

1. Stay true to your brand.

You want your meme to feel authentic to your brand, just like any other marketing strategy. Trends are a trend that everyone wants to follow. Make sure you don't miss it!

Not every viral meme is a good fit to your brand. Be selective in which memes are created and which ones you delete.

2. Do not be offensive

Also, ensure that your meme doesn't offend anyone.

Brands could get in trouble if they don't think through the implications of joining in on the meme fun. Before you sign up, here are some questions. Is the meme true?

Have fun with a certain group or community?

Use insults, slurs or charged words.

Rely on suggestive imagery and language?

You may want to reconsider using it if you answered "yes" to any one of these questions.

3. Follow these unofficial meme rules.

A meme that isn't working properly is the worst.

It's almost like teens using teen slang in inappropriate contexts.

These are some guidelines to remember:

Keep it brief and sweet.

Make sure to use large, easy-to-read text.

After customizing your meme, make sure it is still easily identifiable.

Do not try to alter the meaning of the meme. This could confuse users.

Avoid using CTAs in your meme.

4. Grab the iron while it's hot.

You should share your meme when it is most popular, not after it has been shared.

You may not get the attention you desire from your audience if interest has waned.

Use meme marketing whenever it makes sense for you brand. This is a creative and simple way to tell your brand story while engaging your audience.