How to Use Instagram Memes to Increase Engagement

 In Later

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Instagram memes taking over your feed?

That’s because this year’s biggest trend is using memes to boost your Instagram engagement, and brands quickly jumped on board!

What was once reserved for Instagram meme account, brands today are realizing the power of Instagram memes, especially when it comes to building brand identity, driving product interest, and increasing engagement.

In the following post, we look at how you can get involved and use Instagram memes for business:

instagram memes

What are Instagram Memes?

What makes a meme a meme? Does it have to be funny? Clever? Pop-cultural? Some combination of the three?

While most of us will immediately recognize a meme when we see one, nailing down a definition is surprisingly difficult to do.

In the broadest sense possible, a meme is any piece of media that passes from person-to-person on the internet. They usually have some kind of cultural relevance, they’re often funny or clever, and they typically feature a combination of text and imagery (this can be a photo, a GIF, or even a video):

While they may be difficult to define, there’s one thing that’s for certain: memes are really popular on Instagram — like really, really popular.

In fact, some of the biggest, most engaged accounts on Instagram exist for the sole purpose of creating and distributing memes. We’re, of course, talking about meme accounts like @fuckjerry, @ladbible, and @mytherapistsays — all of which have over a million followers.

View this post on Instagram

I’ll open you one day I swear ????

A post shared by By Sarah Merrill (@bigkidproblems) on Aug 5, 2019 at 4:48pm PDT


But that’s beginning to change.

In the last year or so, brands and businesses have also started jumping on the meme bandwagon, breaking away from the highly curated feeds of 2018 in lieu of something a little more authentic and way more fun:

instagram memes

It was really just a matter of time.

Memes are meant to be relatable, relevant, and highly-shareable so they’re perfect for building brand engagement — but there are tons of different business uses: everything from building brand identity to driving product interest.


How to Use Instagram Memes for Business

As we’ve already mentioned, because they’re so shareable, posting a funny or relevant meme can earn you a ton of likes, comments, shares, and saves.

In fact, Later’s most-commented Instagram posts of all time was a Brittney Spears meme that we posted when Instagram’s servers went down.

Wondering how you can incorporate memes into your own account? Here are a few great examples:

Instagram Memes #1: Promote Your Brand Values

There’s no denying that Instagram is still a very social place. And people want to follow accounts that they can relate to, regardless of whether it’s a brand, influencer, or something else.

So it’s important to make your Instagram account as relatable as possible and really show off what your business is all about! And memes can be great for this.

Take @ritual for example. The modern vitamin brand often posts fun, pop-cultural memes that show off its ethos and brand values — all while engaging their audience in a relatable way:

View this post on Instagram

*What like it’s hard?*

A post shared by Ritual (@ritual) on Sep 7, 2019 at 9:01am PDT

The same is true for @curology — they often use memes to build brand affinity with their audience while tying back to their values:

What’s great about this style of Instagram meme is that anyone can do it! All you have to do is find the right photo, video, or GIF, and build a message that captures your identity and vision, and helps make your brand memorable (bonus points if you can make it funny!). 

Instagram Memes #2: Share Viral Tweets from Your Community

As we mentioned in our top trends of 2019 post, one of the biggest (and strangest) design crazes to hit Instagram this year is using the platform to share screenshots of viral Tweets. 

Meme accounts like @daquan and @thefatjewish have been doing it for years, but the big surprise is that brands are now jumping on the trend too!

View this post on Instagram

Self-confidence is the best filter ✨????

A post shared by PrettyLittleThing (@prettylittlething) on May 23, 2019 at 10:25am PDT

The community aspect that we love about this trend is that it isn’t just brands reposting their own Tweets on Instagram — they’re also finding Tweets from their community that reflect their brand style, attitude, and messaging so it appeals to their Instagram followers too!

Of course, whereas meme accounts are happy to share screenshots as is (aesthetics don’t matter quite as much in comedy), businesses and influencers are taking it a step further and adding on-brand backgrounds to their posts.

Check out how Later did it with a simple color gradient as a backdrop to keep up our aesthetic: 

This post was originally published on Later

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