Gifs in Digital Marketing: How To Engage Your Audience in 2019!

Ah, gifs. They’re trending at the moment and now’s the time to capitalize on their success.
Gifs help draw attention to your content while providing a quirky spin on the usual imagery that people are used to seeing. They’re incredibly popular and have dramatically taken over the internet. You’ve seen them, right?

There’s this one that you might have seen floating around Facebook:

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And then there’s my personal favorite:

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Gifs add a little spark to your brand’s personality and voice. They provide a way to interact with your audience and to communicate thoughts and feelings in a creative way. GIfs capture feelings and communicate feelings in a way that words simply cannot do.
They’re basically an animated meme, and who doesn’t love a good meme?
Not convinced? Trust me, by the end of this article, you will be gif-savvy and itching to implement them in your marketing strategy.

Why You Need to Use Gifs

It’s undeniable, gifs are popular and aren’t going anywhere anytime soon. According to Medium, there are over 7 billion gifs being sent every day. Gifs have evolved to be a form of communication. With social platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, iMessage, WhatsApp, Tinder, Slack, and more adapting their messaging applications to cater for gifs, it’s time to get on board.
Labeled as “marketing’s newest shiny toy”, brands are now collaborating with gif creators like Giphy to produce their own, personalized material. Why? Well, 69% of Americans have reported that they’d rather send a gif because they’re more effective in capturing emotions. People are actively choosing gifs to be their preferred material of communication.
Furthermore, the brain is able to process images 60,000 times faster than text. By just having an image that’s animated, your brand is already 60,000 times more recognizable than any flat promotional content you have out there.
Statistics aside, gifs are a great way to let your brand’s personality shine. They add a whole new dimension to your brand and truly show that you’re “GIF-ted”.   
 

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How to Use Gifs in Marketing

One of the easiest ways to use gifs in marketing is to look at your content platforms. Do you have a blog? Do you have active social media platforms? That’s all you need to start!
Instead of putting in the hours trying to come up with the quirky copy or a few sentences that will get your audience engaged, try using a gif. Here’s the trick: just think to yourself, “when in doubt, there’s definitely a Bachelor gif out there” “is this sentence going to have my audience engaged or is there a relatable gif to what I’m writing that will excite my audience?”

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Didn’t you prefer seeing Bibiana clap instead of reading another sentence? It’s that simple! You just have to find the right one to suit what you’re trying to emote.
 

How to Pick the Right Gif

You might be thinking to yourself, “Courtney, we don’t spend hours a day watching mind-numbing reality TV, where do I even find the right gif?” Gifs are all about reactions and finding the right one for the situation. You have to find the right one that suits your brand and what you’re trying to say.
Thankfully, the internet is a big, wonderfully weird place where your options are endless. In most instances, you just have to type in a keyword or phrase to get the right gif.
First, you’ll need to know where to find them. Social platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Whatsapp have gifs built into their interface but if you’re wanting to use gifs on your website or blog, it can take a little bit of research. Our go-to sites are Giphy and Tenor. There are billions of gifs available on these sites and you are bound to find a relatable option.
Here are some key points that we look out for in a good gif:

  1. Is it recognizable?
  2. Is it relatable?
  3. Is it appropriate to my content?
  4. Is it going to cause a reaction in my audience?

How to Embed Your Gif

Once you’ve got your GIF-ted pick, all you have to do is embed it into your content. Don’t be afraid, this is SUPER simple to do and only takes a few clicks.
 

  • WordPress Coding

Step 1: Choose Your Gif
Step 2: Copy the Embed Code
HTML code
Step 3: Open Your HTML Editor
Wordpress media insert
Step 4: Paste Your Code
HTML code
Et voila.

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  • Copy and Paste

If your website supports a copy and paste feature, we highly recommend opting for this method. It quick, easy and you don’t have to worry about coding.
Step 1: Choose Your Gif
Step 2: Right Click and Save Image
right click menu
Step 3: Paste into Website
 

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It’s that easy!

How to Get Your Own Gifs

Now that we’ve covered the basics, let’s make this official and take it to the next level. Creating a set of completely personalized gifs is trending and brands are loving the new feature.
Creating your own gif can be a great brand activation strategy that ignites instant brand recognition. Once created, you can add these to your Instagram stories and other Instagram users can start to use them as well. It’s easy to do too!
All it takes is to become a verified Giphy member. Once you’re verified you can load your gifs to the site and wait for the magic to happen!
The downside? The verification system is super restrictive and the chances of the platform accepting your request are limited. This makes it especially hard to do as a small business.
With so many amazing gifs out there, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. After all, it’s more about what you do with the gif and not the gif itself. The key is for businesses to use their gifs intelligently and strategically to get the results that they want to see.
Would recommend making your own gifs? Yes, it’s a great way to spark brand awareness. Is it a necessity? Definitely not.
 

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