Let’s start with a little confession. In the past, I’ve been a little snobbish about memes. In my head, I thought one or two (at a push) weekly was ok but anymore was overkill. But I’ve come to realise that we all blog for different reasons and if you want to make connections, find new friends and increase page views then memes are 100% guaranteed to help you with this. And I want to prove to you that memes are not evil and I have a few thoughts on them that I’m just going to spew out here.
Ok maybe no one actually thinks memes are evil but it got your attention, right?! However you may think they are boring, generic and not worth the time and effort. Like everything, they are what you make of them though. I put as much thought in to any I join as I do any other post. And being honest, I could write a review faster than the time I spend on one but I like the payback. I like the interaction and I like that they often drive traffic to other posts.
Personally, I only participate in a meme about once a week and often not even that. But that’s my choice for my blog and my blogging goals. Someone whose priorities are to mainly be part of the blogging community might join one every day and that’s just as valid a choice as mine. When it comes to blogging the only right decisions are the ones you decide for your blog (apart from plagiarism obviously, now that really is evil incarnate).
One thing that comes to mind when you mention memes is blah comments. BUT I have noticed that comments on memes have improved a lot since I started blogging a year and a half ago. Back then it was common to see a generic comment like ‘great haul, see mine here’ but I think lots of bloggers were vocal about how meaningless these interactions were and things changed. The meme I join the most often is The Sunday Post and the comments I get feel genuine, they make me want to go visit them back, squee over their new books and hear their weekly news too.
Another huge plus for memes is that you find new blogs. It is easy when you have been blogging for a while to just stick to your tried and trusted blogging pal’s posts but it’s good to look around and see who is joining us. New bloggers are filled with a passion and enthusiasm that is contagious and I find it motivates me all over again to rediscover why I love blogging.
The main reason why I don’t join more memes is time constraints. I love Top Ten Tuesday and if I had more time, I would make time for that one too. However when I do join in a meme, I want to take the time and visit other blogs. And I don’t just want to speed around every blog on the linky, I want to pick ten or maybe fifteen and take the time to really read their post and leave a thoughtful comment. And I want to reply to comments I get and visit them back too (thankfully some overlap!). Not to mention the time it takes to draft the post itself so 3 or so memes a month is what I can realistically handle.
Another thing to remember about memes is that they are like buses, you can hop on and hop off whenever you want. Think of it like an unlimited bus ticket that you can use as little or as often as you want. At first I felt I had to join every week and that can become a drag but now I just join in when I want and skip when I’m not feeling it. No one cares and being brutally honest no one even notices so just set your own timetable for when you’ll participate. I love that freedom and it makes me feel more relaxed about it all.
The final thing about memes is that I’ll usually only visit ones that I’m joining in on. So that means that all others in my feeder just get marked as read. I don’t feel guilty as I’d rather spend my time on other blog posts. But when I’ve joined in one, I’m in the zone and all go. Maybe it’s a little bit like a ‘you had to be there’ scenario.
Overall memes often get a bad rap in the blogging world. But they can work if you want them to work. And above all, they are not a lesser post, they are just an alternative post and you will get lots of visits from others also doing the same meme.
Bookish Chat : How do you feel about memes? Have your opinions on them changed the longer you blogged? What is your favourite? Do you read them or just skip over them? Discuss below!