If you’re on social media, you should already know what an internet meme is. A meme is a funny picture that goes viral on the web, and it typically has a visual element and focus. It comes in various forms, though most of them feature photos emblazoned with witty text. But what if you want to make your own meme? There are websites that will allow you to quickly customize your own from a host of existing ones. All you need to do is to choose a image template, type in your desired text, and share away. However, if you want to create a whole new meme of your own from scratch, it’s not exactly tough.
Step 1: Do your research
Know your memes — It’s good practice look at memes out there that have gone viral already, especially current ones. These can provide inspiration — maybe there’s a certain meme theme that’s popular at the moment, for instance — and allow you tell you if somebody’s already tried your idea.
The above image, for example, has been re-appropriated into meme-dom on multiple occasions.
Keep a watchful eye on trends — As we’ve already said, keeping current can be a big source of inspiration. Facebook and Twitter are great for spotting trends, and entertainment topics are usually a win. Take note of what makes you laugh the most and what gets the most responses.
For example, as of the writing of this article, Hillary Clinton’s reaction to pyrotechnics at the 2016 Democratic National Convention was spreading like wildfire on the internet. Probably because it’s comedic gold.
Also, Game of Thrones has been a source of inspiration for many a meme as of late because, well, who doesn’t love Game of Thrones?
Choose a subject you can relate to — If you’re not a sports fan, you might have a hard time selling a sports-themed meme. Cute animals are always a great go-to when you are tapped out of ideas, but if you really want to push the envelope, choose a public figure you can easily imitate. If you’d like to use a personal experience as the center of your meme, choose one that’s easy to relate to.
Decide on a medium — The easiest medium to use is a photo, but if you can be funny on camera, you might want to venture into video.
Step 2: Compose your content
Collect your materials — Before going any further, this is the point where you decide if you’re going to come up with your own stuff or recycle things you’ve found online. If you’re doing a photo meme and you want to use existing content, grab the appropriate screens from the videos you want to use. You can also surf the web for images you’d like to use as pegs, or hit up Imgur’s meme generator.
Keep it short and simple — Keep in mind that the attention span of the typical internet user is pretty short, so you want to make an immediate impression. Come up with a catchphrase that uses simple and memorable language.
Find the right expression to convey — Make sure your visuals match the sentiment you’re trying to portray.
Step 3: Find the necessary tools
If you’re creating a photo meme, it might be wise to get Photoshop or use Pixlr Editor, the latter of which is a free image editor that offers similar functionality. You can also look up meme-generator sites like Imgur, which let you upload your own photo to use as the background. Lastly, you can install photo apps directly on your phone that allow you to add text to your images.
If you’re creating a video meme, the easiest apps and sites to use are Instagram, Snapchat, and YouTube.