One of the recent trends in the blogging world are memes. I, myself, have been tagged in several of them in the past few months. First, let’s start off with the basics.
Simply put, memes are a series of questions that one person after another decides to re-post and answer. Usually, memes come with a set of rules, generally including giving credit to the person’s site where you found the meme, answering questions, and then suggesting by tagging your friends to answer the questions on their site as well.
Most bloggers that participate in the blogging community by reading and commenting on other blogs will likely stumble across a few memes. If, however, you want to start a meme of your own, you can find ideas for memes at The Daily Meme, or any site that offers quizzes.
Memes are not limited to the blogosphere. They can also be found on social networks. Like the recent one spreading through Facebook notes, “25 things you may not know about me,” where you give 25 random facts about yourself and mention others in the note to follow-up with their answers.
For those of us with a very multi-faceted blog that is more personal, it’s pretty simple. We credit the person who tags us with a link back to their site and their meme post, answer the question, and then tag our friends.
But for those with a more strict blog that only covers a particular subject, memes can be more of a challenge. Certain blog writers may not see a relevant way to incorporate random facts about themselves into a more subject-specific theme. They may not want to share personal facts about themselves to such a large audience. Or maybe they want to, but are not sure how, or why they should.
Let’s look at why you would want to participate in a blogging meme. Memes allow the author to introduce themselves personally to their audience, and get external links to their blog from being tagged and from the return tag of the people who continue the meme.
Also, with the right tinkering, your meme could include internal links towards your own posts, either highlighting popular ones or bringing older posts back into the spotlight again.
A good blogging meme can even serve as an introduction to new readers. My most recent meme that displays these tactics is 7 things new and dedicated readers may not know about me and this site. Thanks to the tag from Richard at Makak Media in his meme post, I was able to create a post for all my new readers that covers my favorite posts since the conception of this site, giving them more of a feel of what I write about.
I’m going to use the meme that I have encountered the most recently as an example, which is seven things you may not know about me.
I got the idea of tailoring blog memes to fit with your blog’s subject matter from Evita at Evolving Beings, in her post about being tagged to write six things about herself. Instead of writing just any random facts, she wrote hers specifically on her own spiritual growth, which ties perfectly into her blog’s theme of growing in wisdom and enlightenment.
So when she tagged me, the second time for me to be tagged in one of these memes, I was inspired to write my meme on my personal six steps towards a healthy lifestyle. Instead of it just being one of those posts that some readers might pass by, it turned into a post I could market as tips on living the healthy way. It was something I was passionate about, and something that continues to get traffic.
Here are some other ways to customize a blogging meme to fit your site’s needs.
For internet marketing blogs
Give new readers a quick introduction to your best tips by creating a meme about the seven things readers may not know about your marketing/link building habits, or to show the experience and honesty that readers can expect from your site, a meme about seven things you have tried in marketing that have or have not worked and why.
For social media blogs
For sites relating to social media, here is a great opportunity to tell your readers the ways you use social networks to your benefit. Your blogging meme could be about seven social networks you may not know I am on, seven things you may not know about ways I use social networks, seven things you may not know I Twitter about, seven of the best social groups I belong to, or the seven Facebook causes I support.
For technology blogs
Technical writers/reviewers could use this meme to write about the seven gadgets you may not know I won, seven applications I would not live without, or seven things I installed and wished I didn’t.
For photography blogs
Photographers could also bring light to favorite photos they posted in the past, or photos that are out of their usual range of photography subjects. Blogging memes could be about seven things you may not know I love to photograph, seven photographs that are my absolute favorites, seven stories you may not know are behind my favorite photographs, or seven reasons I chose photography.
For writing blogs
Again, here the blogger can re-surface older pieces of writing, add new ones, or share pieces from other authors with memes about seven of my favorite poems, seven things you may not know inspired these particular works, seven things that inspire me to write, and so on.
For motivational blogs
What better way to give readers proof of your motivational skills than by giving examples of how your techniques have worked for yourself and others. Create a blogging meme about seven things that made you want to motivate others, seven things that motivated you to do something (quit smoking, live healthier, read more, etc.), or seven people who inspired/motivated you.
For travel blogs
Possibilities on travel themed sites are endless: seven places I love, seven places I have always wanted to go, seven places you may know not I’ve been, or even seven places I wish I had never been.
For any other specific subject blogs
Let your readers know why your chosen subject is your passion. Let them into the personal reasons why they will get your best information about something by writing the seven things that make me passionate about psychology, the seven reasons I support this cause, the seven goals I strive to reach in this line of work, or the seven reasons I want to share this with you.
Now it’s your turn. Has this article made you more likely to participate in a blogging meme? Have you adopted a blogger meme, and made it fit into your niche site? Has another blogger’s meme drawn you into reading more of their blog, or better yet, subscribe? Be sure to include links to your personal or favorite meme in the comments as inspiration to others.