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Why are memes important to marketers?

Memes are more than just cat pictures. Author Richard Dawkins coined the word ‘meme’ to describe “a unit of cultural evolution analogous to the gene”.

A meme has become shorthand for a viral gif. But if think of the word meme in its original context, you can see the importance to marketers. Memes are units of information that reside in the brain: the language and symbols we use and behaviour we adopt.

They are important to marketers to create brands, propositions and messages that catch people’s attention, stick in their minds, spread virally.

As Nike’s Phil Knight said: “You can’t explain much in 60 seconds but when you have Michael Jordan, you don’t have to“.

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Memes are important to marketers because “Propositions and narratives
are only useful if they work in the 2.6 seconds when preferences are formed and purchases made.
”  Fisk, Peter.(2006) Marketing Genius. Capstone.

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