GIF (Graphics Interchange Format) was born in 1987, and the format went through an awkward teenage phase during the late 90s. Today, the format has been around for over three decades, but it only recently became popular across social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, etc.
You may have unknowingly used GIFs in your daily life without realizing what it’s called. For example, have you ever sent those short animated videos to your friends on WhatsApp or used one to comment on your friend’s Facebook post? Those are GIFs!
They are animated videos that can be easily shared across platforms and devices. An excellent example of GIFs would be memes. Who doesn’t know memes these days? Memes have social media sites buzzing.
Owing to the popularity of GIFs, brands have started adopting them and including them in their social media marketing mix. However, they give photos and videos stiff competition because it is somewhat a combination of both.
If you are a brand seeking to enhance your social engagement, you cannot miss out on leveraging the popularity of GIFs. However, settling for only sharing videos and pictures across your social media pages is passe. It is time to liven it up by converting your videos into funny, attractive GIFs and quickly sharing them via chat, text, etc. If you wonder how to make an MP4 into a GIF, there are several online GIF-makers to make things easier for you.
So let’s look at why the popularity of GIFs in social media marketing is not going anywhere, but upwards.
They help with audience retention
Big chunks of text will do you no good if you want to hold your audience’s attention. But unfortunately, nobody has the patience or the time to go through huge blocks of text.
After the COVID-19 pandemic, social media platforms are primarily used for uploading pictures or videos. People enjoy scrolling through them to pass their time. This is why TikTok became extremely popular during the lockdown.
Therefore, to reach out to your target audience with a short attention span, you must offer them something attractive and easy to consume. For a few years, brands focused on creating videos to attract attention, and now the focus is on GIFs.
GIFs are preferred over static images because they are animated. Hence, they are more likely to remain in the audience’s mind for long.
It helps brands express their unique personality
It is a great idea to showcase your brand’s personality using animated videos like GIFs. They will help add a unique flair to your marketing campaigns and show your target audience you are willing to adapt to the changing times.
Moreover, GIFs are expressive and can be used to communicate with the audience.
It helps in telling great stories to capture the attention
Since GIFs are expressive, they are one of the best tools for communicating with your target audience. In addition, they are pretty fun and easier to consume. This is why brands are increasingly implementing GIFs in their social media marketing mix to attract the audiences’ attention and convey their message.
You can tell your brand story using GIFs, and your audience will remember it because these animated videos are fun to watch.
GIFs can hold the audience’s attention for longer and offer incredible joy to the viewers.
Creative Ways to Use GIFs in your Social Media Campaigns
Highlight the product and its uses
If you want to show several products in a single post, you can display them using GIFs. This will create an interesting animated slideshow of your products. As they will automatically loop, they are much more effective than creating carousel posts.
GIFs do not require the viewers to click and change the slideshow to watch more products. It will change automatically.
How-to guides or tutorials
Since GIFs are animated videos, they can show how to do something. Each frame of your GIF will show a new step, creating a mini-tutorial or how-to guide for your viewers to follow. Then, as the GIFs automatically loop, the viewers can follow the steps without much hassle and quickly understand what needs to be done.
Brands can create GIFs to show how users will use their products. The GIFs may even be about the benefits of the products and the different ways they come in handy.
A fun way to introduce your brand or team
Introducing your brand using a static photo or video is old-school. However, GIFs are a fun way to introduce your brand to your target audience. You can combine all the good pictures and videos to convey so much via GIFs.
The Bottom Line
GIFs are a huge hit among social media marketers because the audience is lapping up this animated format. GIFs convey so much more than static images and are fun to watch. Include it in your social media marketing mix, or risk falling behind!