What’s up with Cats and Bacon?

The Sad Cat Diary may be the best cat video I’ve seen but it certainly isn’t the first. And who can forget the bacon bra—even if you want to? Cats and bacon own the internet – but why? One could argue that they are both bad for you or that they are both the best thing ever. Perhaps the yin and yang of cats and bacon is where the true appeal lies.

Should you eat bacon?

The Holy Grail of Social Media is getting something to go viral. Cats and bacon go viral all the time and they aren’t all hip or cool so what gives?

The truth is most of us aren’t cool. Not even a little. We don’t look good in Abercrombie and Fitch clothes, we use about 10% of the features on our smart phones, but we all love cats and bacon. Big tattooed bikers and nerdy science guys love cats and bacon; perfectly coiffed CEO’s and haggard moms love cats and bacon.

Why not dogs? We can’t agree on dogs. Dogs come in too may shapes and sizes. Your Chihuahua is not my Bernese Mountain Dog, but your yellow tabby is pretty much my grey tiger cat. Dogs say too much about us to be universal. They come in too many flavors. If I tell you I have a dog, you ask what kind. If I tell you I have a cat you say “Oh I love cats.” If I say I have bacon you say “AWESOME, can I have some?” It doesn’t matter what kind. I serve the best bacon in the world (Harrington’s of Vermont bacon) but I eat any and all bacon that comes my way.

And then there’s the danger.

Your cute kitty has a serious arsenal of hurt, killer reflexes and lightening speed. All cats are dangerous but they are too small to kill and eat you. (Though my last cat would have tried.) Petting a cat has an element of danger. One too many and they will “scratch the sh*t out of you per protocol.” Eating bacon is riding the lightening—fat, nitrates, carcinogens, YUMMY!

As we look to social media to connect with our customers, praying that something we do takes off and gets shared more than once, maybe playing it safe isn’t the way to go. Maybe a little danger is a good thing, something we can all identify with, like cats and bacon.

Helpful tip: Images get shared more than text by about 10 to 1. Visuals, videos, and viral all go together.

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Sarah Fletcher
Co-founder Catalog University