Imagine casually scrolling through one of your social media feeds. Maybe you’re doing some Facebook stalking. Perhaps Instagram liking. Or Tumblr shitposting. Regardless of what you WERE doing, NOW you see one of these text-based memes:
- “Accidentally marry an Aries?”
- “Which one’s more disappointing… your marriage or last night’s episode of Game Of Thrones”
- “Get your mom what she really wants for Mother’s Day: a divorce”
Following these captions are an arrow emoji and 336-816-0073, the digits to divorce and criminal lawyer James McMinn. The memes originated from his Facebook page. People quickly screenshotted, re-blogged, and spread these throughout the internet. Why? Because many found the content hilarious. Someone who was once just a small-town lawyer in North Carolina became an Internet meme lord. He’s a national icon in his own right.
All laughter aside, McMinn’s marketing strategy was ingenious. Memes have become very commonplace as an (often relatable) source of humor. What McMinn did was take his target audience (either those looking for a divorce or those looking to clean up their record), and create witty text posts. The posts oriented themselves toward the needs of said audience.
Humor is frequently underrated as an effective marketing tactic. but being funny makes one more memorable, and more likable. People are less likely to view your business as a money-sucking leech if your advertising can have someone chuckling. Being able to make someone laugh causes them to feel more at ease. Then they are more likely to see your business as a source of comfort.
McMinn’s meme-making helped him land extra clients. The lawyer had even jokingly made a meme with the caption, “As much as I would love to help each & every one of you around the U.S. who accidentally married an Aries, I am only licensed in NC!”. And while wonderfully witty, he takes his profession seriously. Some quick Google searching yields primarily positive reviews for those who consulted him for his services. Being good at what you do, coupled with effective marketing is an effective recipe for a reliable client base.
Unconventionality can be one of the greatest qualities to have in advertising. Your audience is like most people. They are suppressed. They feel bound by societal rules and constructs. To see someone or something that uniquely sticks out appeals to the self that rests under the chains. McMinn’s dark humor and meme usage were the manifestations of unconventionality. He used to land more cases.
Think about your own quirks, and how they can become your business strengths.