It’s 1987- the computers are big, cell phones are ‘bricks’, and the first GIF (Graphics Interchange Format) is released. It’s pixelated with simple graphics, and it’s hard to believe this low resolution quality was the norm. These short, looping animations are almost unrecognizable to the popular GIFS you see today.
GIFS have come a long way. It started with a looping graphic of a plane, a fire burning or a T-Rex running. And you can’t forget the dancing banana used in the “Peanut Better Jelly Time” video. After the rise of Web 2.0 and social media sites such as Tumblr and YouTube around 2007, it spurred the growth of GIFs. Tumblr allowed users to embed it into their texts while YouTube paved the way for celebrity reaction GIFs.
Now, they’re everywhere. GIFs can be found on social media feeds, emails, and personal texts. They’re easily sharable, relatable, creative, and funny – and all available right at your fingertips. This makes GIFs a valuable tool for marketers and an innovative way to reach consumers.
Here’s why GIFs should be used in your next marketing campaign:
- Effortless to Consume – It’s a fact, our attention spans are getting shorter. While videos are an efficient way to get a message across, it doesn’t guarantee the consumer will watch it. GIFs are more exciting than a still photo while being short enough to grab our attention. As photographer Jamie Beck describes a GIF, it’s "a photograph that is still alive." Plus, they’re a lot cheaper than creating a full length video.
- It’s a Story & How-To Video in Seconds – If a picture is worth a thousand words, then how much is a GIF? A few second looping video can quickly convey an emotion and message with little to no dialogue. If a product needs explanation, a short visual tutorial via GIF can be a summary of info while saving time on the consumers end.
- Show off Your Brand’s Personality – GIFs are fun and expressive, and are ultimately the language of the Internet. They can make a corporate company become more human and relatable. But make sure to choose images, colors, and messages that still align with your company’s mission.
- Make Your Products and Promotions Fun- Have a new company announcement and want to get everyone on the edge of their seat? Get buyers interested by enticing them with a creative GIF that leaves them wanting more. It will give your product, event, or promotion a boost by showcasing the newest features.
- Engage with Your Audience- Grab your audience’s attention so much that they feel the urge to share it with their friends- maybe to the extent that it’ll go viral. Interact and respond to consumers online via GIF to get more users to follow your page.
- Email Marketing- Spice up a regular email blast with a GIF that will make it one to remember. In a study conducted by BlueFly, emails that included a GIF drew in 12% more revenue than a non-animated email.
- Mobile Friendly- It’s hard to find someone without a smart phone in today’s day and age, which is why it’s vital for marketing campaigns to be mobile friendly. Luckily, a GIF’s file size is small and uploads a lot faster than full length videos. GIFs can then open from anywhere at any time.
Many Internet trends seem to come and go, but GIFs are here to stay. Within three decades, it’s been used across various platforms while remaining popular in its lowest and best quality. And after all these years, we all can’t seem to agree on how to pronounce GIF either. These short animation clips are beyond words- so here’s to another thirty years of more laughs, relatable content and creativity.
At Giovatto Advertising, we’ve been staying on top of this trend too. GIFs have become a part of our email blasts and social media promotions. For all of your GIF needs, our marketing, creative, and digital team is here to help.