Ah, the GIF! To some of us they are still a stream of cats and memes used by teenagers, but we need to get with the program. A poll published in Time found that almost two-thirds of millennials and a quarter of people under age 65 feel that GIFs communicate their thoughts and feelings better than words. This just reveals their popularity and permanency in the way we communicate.
GIF is an acronym for Graphic Interchange Format and simply put, it is a series of images put together in a soundless video that loops continuously. This means they immediately catch your eye.
GIFs can express complex emotions and messages in a couple of seconds. We love them, we hate them, they make us laugh, they arouse our curiosity, we talk about them and on and on. And that’s the crux of whole the matter. GIFs engage with us, capture our attention and illicit a response. And surely that is the goal of any marketing strategy.
So, how does one effectively use a GIF? Let’s take a look at how to use them in various communication channels.
1. Delight your email subscribers
Email marketing is still one of the most effective (and cost-effective) marketing strategies. But consumers are inundated with email marketing campaigns. Yours needs to stand out from the rest and adding GIFs does just that.
They engage your audience and, whilst providing entertainment, showcase your brand. A short animation can show off your product in a far more effective way that any static image can. This definitely makes your marketing email way more interactive and exciting!
2. Stand out on social media
Our social media news feeds are chock-a-block. You need something that will quickly gain someone’s attention when they are scrolling down their feeds. A GIF will make your marketing stand out and engage your consumers in conversation. You can use GIFs to:
- Promote your products or service.
- Demonstrate your brand’s personality. GIFs show your human side, and this creates a positive experience with your audience. Don’t be afraid to use humour!
- Tell a visual story in a few seconds and tap into your audience’s emotions.
- Be more relatable to your audience.
- Have fun with your post comments by reacting with “thank you” GIFs, like the one below.
3. Jazz up your blogs
There’s no doubt that blogging drives traffic to your website, but not everyone likes to wade through a lengthy post. Couple this with the fact that according to Psychology Today “visual cues help us to better retrieve and remember information” and we see that we need a better solution.
Enter the GIF!
Add that WOW factor by including an engaging GIF. And remember, GIFs don’t only need to be entertaining. They can also be very practical.
Adding GIFs to your marketing strategy will encourage your audience to engage with you which will, in turn, boost sales. They are easy to make or there are stacks of free ones to choose from on site such as Giphy. So why not join the craze and experiment with GIFs. With the right approach, you’ll turn digital strangers into your biggest brand fans.