In the seemingly endless wave of memes, it’s rare that one that captures the zeitgeist and attention of the masses as well as “Texts from Hillary Clinton.”
Drawing inspiration from photos of the Secretary of State gazing at her Blackberry, expressionless and eyes hidden behind dark shades (credited to Reuters photographer Kevin Lamarque and photographer Diana Walker for Time), friends Stacy Lambe and Adam Smith, both PR professionals in the DC area, created the meme and set up corresponding social channels/handles last week, quickly amassing an impressive number of fans, followers, mainstream media coverage, and even the attention of Madame Secretary herself.
Truthfully, it is not the actual meme that is so unique, but rather, the execution that propelled – and ultimately ended – the dissemination of TFH on screens across the world.
Over one week, TFH shared 32 unique posts on Tumblr, and by the end of the week had accrued over 45,000 Tumblr followers, 8,400 Twitter followers, and over 83,000 shares on Facebook. Covered in an op-ed piece by Maureen Dowd, and shared via Twitter by celebrities including the socially savvy drummer of The Roots, ?uestlove, TFH was truly a viral sensation.
But, unlike most memes, TFH had an expiration date – yesterday, actually. Lambe and Smith determined that the meme had run its course, noting, “As far as memes go – it has gone as far as it can go. Is it really possible to top a submission from the Secretary herself? No. But then when you get to text with her in real life – it’s just over. At least for us.”
While it’s easy to determine success using sheer data, it seems the ultimate mark of achievement is a hat tip from the meme’d individual herself.
The creators put it best in their final sign off – “Memes really do come true.”