How To Become A Millionaire Writing About Memes
If you're on the internet in 2018, you've undoubtedly encountered memes before.
Whether you're confused by them or enthralled, memes are a powerful, modern form of communication.
Today I'm going to profile a meme site that ranks for over 9 million keywords, has over 65 million backlinks, and is likely making a fortune in ad revenue. In fact, it was purchased in 2011 for 7 figures!
So, yes, it is possible to become a millionaire writing about memes.
Before I go any further it makes sense to establish terms.
What is a meme?
According to LifeWire, a meme is:
“a virally-transmitted cultural symbol or social idea. The majority of modern memes are captioned photos that are intended to be funny, often as a way to publicly ridicule human behavior. Other memes can be videos and verbal expressions.”
My Meme Niche Video Walkthrough
If you want to deep dive into this niche opportunity, check out my video walk through. I discuss this niche and its huge SEO potential.
Popular Meme Examples
For frame of reference, some popular examples include the following:
The 'But That's None of My Business' Meme
The Business Cat Meme
The Expanding Brain Meme
Now that we're on the same page, let's examine the site's structure, rankings and traffic sources.
What's The Site?
The site is KnowYourMeme.com.
Know Your Meme is a website dedicated to documenting Internet phenomena: viral videos, image macros, catchphrases, web celebs and more.
According to Wikipedia, the Know Your Meme (KYM) project started in 2007 and is a website and video series that employs wiki software to:
“document various Internet memes and other online phenomena, such as viral videos, image macros, catchphrases, internet celebrities and more. It also investigates new and changing memes through research, as it commercializes on the culture. Originally produced by Rocketboom, the website was acquired in March 2011 by Cheezburger Network. Know Your Meme includes sections for confirmed, submitted, deadpooled (rejected or incompletely documented), researching, and popular memes.”
The Cheezburger Network is chaired by CEO Ben Huh, a South-Korean-American internet entrepreneur. According to Wikipedia, its collection of sites received 375 million views a month across 50 sites in 2010. KnowYourMeme was recently profiled by the New York Times- a pretty illustrious bit of press (and backlink).
In a nutshell, the site is making money with display ads. As you'll see in my traffic breakdown section, it's getting a lot of traffic from its meme research.
Breaking Down The Site
The site has several notable specialties:
KnowYourMeme.com is primarily a meme database- a repository to catalog both new and old memes. As you can see, there are sections for memes that are: Confirmed, Submissions, Researching, Newsworthy, Most Popular, Deadpool, & All Entries.
Each meme gets an academic, Wiki-analysis that examines its origin, its meaning, and popularity.
For example, check out their Slender Man entry:
Slender Man (a.k.a Slenderman) is a mythical creature often depicted as a tall, thin figure wearing a black suit and a blank face. According to the legend, he can stretch or shorten his arms at will and has tentacle-like appendages protruding from his back.
It's an authoritative writeup (and video) on perhaps the most bizarre internet creation of all time. It's this sort of focus on content quality that's earned them such fantastic organic keyword rankings.
Video Database: they also have a video repository that's a bit scattershot. Definitely not an emphasis for them.
The site also chronicles a variety of popular and niche news items. At the time of this writing, there most recent articles include one about the volatility of Bitcoin, John Schnatter's resignation from Papa John, and the sentencing of the teen from the Slender Man Stabbing case. A bit of a hodge-podge of internet culture news items.
It also hosts an active forum.
Their blog provides some pretty in-depth analysis of internet culture, including their recent writeup of the top Sites and Apps of 2017, a full review of all of 2017's Trump memes, and even the best video game memes of 2017.
They have a podcast that, at the time of this writing in January 2018, doesn't seem to have been updated since June 2017.
Social Media Properties
Their YouTube Channel has over 200,000 subscribers at the time of this writing in 2018.
Their Twitter profile @KnowYourMeme has over 45,000 followers.
Their Facebook page has over 900,000 likes.
They have a relatively inactive Tumblr.
KYM has an inactive Instagram account, as of this writing.
On to the traffic stats. When I plugged this site into Ahrefs, I had no idea what to expect.
I was absolutely floored to see that they rank for 9.3 million keywords:
Overall, it has a strong domain authority of 67, a high Ahrefs Rank of 5,882, as of this writing, and tons of referring domains.
Below you can see some of their top keywords- including a number 3 rank for the keyword "urban dictionary".
What I really like about this site is that they've capitalized on the enormous search traffic and low search competition for meme-related keywords like "lenny face", "dat boi" and "shadman".
Top 100 Know Your Meme Keywords
*As of 1/18:
|know your meme||1||193000||http://knowyourmeme.com/||15||129610|
|navy seal copypasta||1||96000||http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/navy-seal-copypasta||4||71771|
|pokemon sun and moon||7||898000||http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/subcultures/pokemon-sun-and-moon||39||39605|
|pokemon sun and moon||8||898000||http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/subcultures/pokemon-sun-and-moon/photos||39||33664|
|you reposted in the wrong neighborhood||1||54000||http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/you-reposted-in-the-wrong-neighborhood||0||27504|
|navy seals copypasta||1||33000||http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/navy-seal-copypasta||4||24529|
|does bruno mars is gay||1||46000||http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/does-bruno-mars-is-gay||0||23513|
|i like turtles||1||45000||http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/i-like-turtles||3||19224|
|half life 3||3||189000||http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/half-life-3-confirmed||43||18802|
|omae wa mou shindeiru||1||103000||http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/you-are-already-dead-omae-wa-mou-shindeiru||10||17840|
|press f to pay respects||1||36000||http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/press-f-to-pay-respects||3||16356|
|boku no pico||5||264000||http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/boku-no-pico||8||16192|
|england is my city||1||38000||http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/england-is-my-city||0||16154|
|he will not divide us||2||66000||http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/he-will-not-divide-us||21||15382|
|to be continued meme||1||44000||http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/yes-roundabout-to-be-continued||12||14818|
|virgin killer sweater||1||74000||http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/virgin-killing-sweater||2||14749|
|( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)||2||173000||http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/͡-͜ʖ-͡-lenny-face||53||14615|
|oh baby a triple||1||22000||http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/oh-baby-a-triple||0||14287|
|i sexually identify as an attack helicopter||1||25000||http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/i-sexually-identify-as-an-attack-helicopter||6||13713|
|spooky scary skeletons||3||139000||http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/spooky-scary-skeletons||6||13466|
|bone hurting juice||1||27000||http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/bone-hurting-juice||2||13148|
|monster girl quest||1||56000||http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/subcultures/monster-girl-quest||2||13129|
|interior crocodile alligator||1||26000||http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/interior-crocodile-alligator||4||12902|
|does bruno mars is gay||2||46000||http://knowyourmeme.com/photos/1156615-does-bruno-mars-is-gay||0||12279|
|pepe the frog||4||235000||http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/pepe-the-frog||63||12113|
|shrek is love shrek is life||1||62000||http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/shrek-is-love-shrek-is-life||0||11795|
|cash me outside||5||226000||http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/cash-me-ousside-howbow-dah||34||11702|
|don't talk to me or my son ever again||1||29000||http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/dont-talk-to-me-or-my-son-ever-again||0||11636|
|cash me outside how bow dah||2||115000||http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/cash-me-ousside-howbow-dah||22||11443|
|raise your dongers||1||30000||http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/raise-your-dongers||1||11284|
Indeed, the keyword volume on some of these terms is absolutely absurd. The term "shadman" has a Keyword Difficulty score of zero but over 150,000 monthly searches!
Plugging the site into SimilarWeb, it's estimated that KnowYourMeme.com got over 40 million visits in November 2017:
In terms of traffic sources- as expected, it primarily comes from organic search. Followed up by direct traffic, which also makes sense.
Obviously the site is really well known and people are visiting it by typing it directly into their browser.
If you enjoy this niche site analysis, click the share button below. I'd appreciate it!
Why I Like This Niche
- Fun niche: If you're fascinated by memes and internet culture, there's a ton of traffic out there for the taking
- Low SEO competition
- Opportunity to rake in traffic from different platforms because memes are so visual & popular: YouTube, Reddit, Pinterest, & Facebook
- Opportunity to 'niche down' into a smaller segment of meme culture- a good way to specialize a site and avoid overwhelm
Why I Don't Like This Niche
- While a great niche for AdSense and other display ads, there aren't any ready affiliate opportunities
- You'll need lots of traffic before you can quit your job using display ads- think at least over 500,000 monthly page views
If you like this niche idea, let me know in the comments. If you think it's cool, give me a share. I'd really appreciate it!