In the constant search for the holy grail of marketing content, it is easy to get tunnel vision and look for a complicated solution. Sometimes, making things simple can have a huge impact – especially if it is sharable! GIFs (pronounced GIF, or JIF, depending on which side of the war you are on) have proven to be exactly that.

What is a GIF?

GIF (graphics interchange format) is an animated picture sequence that allows for looping. This means that you can have your message loop continuously in someone’s feed – whether it’s on Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, or any other social network or website. They are most commonly used by people as a means of expressing a reaction, commentary, to convey ideas, or to illustrate points; usually in a fun, creative way.

People Like GIFs

One of the best signs of a successful social media campaign is the amount of shares you are getting. These shares can increase your reach exponentially. This brings me to the best part of GIFs: how much people enjoy them/how “sharable” they are. According to Twitter, 100 million GIFs was shared in 2015.

In a previous post, I referenced a study by Cisco that predicted a dominance of video content by 2020. As GIFs are basically moving images, the same predictions apply to them. Whether you are posting videos, GIFs or just images, they all share one particular trait: they are all visual content.

This trend towards sharing more visuals highlights an important human interest that marketers need to capitalize on. In order to successfully get a message across, words alone won’t cut it.

GIFs are part of the Internet Culture

From the early days of what we now refer to as Web 1.0, GIFs have been a central part of the online culture. With new technological developments, other forms of communication have entered the arena, but GIFs are still among our favorites. In fact, the emerging technologies has actually made it easier to consume and share GIFs. You can send them in text messages, share them on your feed, and it has become very easy to share your very own. Giphy is an incredible service that allows you to search among millions of GIFs and share them for free – making it easy to spruce up your content.

We recommend making your own.

It only takes a basic understanding of file formats to create a GIF. If you have a funny video you would like to turn into a GIF and share on your social media, GIPHY allows you to upload a video and it instantly gives you a shareable GIF.

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