In previous posts, I have covered what a meme is and some brands that have been impacted by them. Most often, something happens in culture and the internet creates a meme based on that piece of information. But a new and interesting phenomenon is beginning to happen where internet memes are finding their way into mainstream advertising. Today I am going to look at a few cases where internet memes are found in mainstream media and advertising.
Vitamin Water Grab it By the Horns campaign – Vitamin Water produced a television commercial that embraced popular memes. Appearances of planking, LOLCats and Nyan Cat made their way into this production and really only those that are familiar with these memes will make full sense of the advertisements.
Imgur, Brisk iced tea and Scumbag Steve – Imgur is a very popular image hosting website whose user base hates advertisements. Scumbag Steve is a very famous internet meme. Brisk makes drinks. Combine the three and you have meme advertising. Brisk ads that portray Scumbag Steve are slated to display on Imgur. My opinion is that this is great targeting as Imgur is very popular with social media outlets like Reddit, whose communities are very likely to know about the Scumbag Steve meme.
Maynards Granny Smith Sour Apple - Maynards is a division of Cadbury and with one particular ad, they demonstrate that they really get memes. They display a floating image with text above and below the said image. This is common among other memes such as Socially Awkward Penguin and Courage Wolf. This advertising campaign uses meme material to relate to internet users and does it well. Not only did they use memes in their advertising campaign, but they implemented it in such a manner that would impress someone who uses memes on a regular basis.
Memes are a way to express culture, but they are becoming part of our culture at the same time. The fact that they are being used in mainstream media campaigns, is an expression of this acceptance. While some of you may have never heard of socially awkward penguin or Nyan Cat before today, you may soon see them in a commercial near you.