GIFs: Animated, looping images are experiencing a surge on mobile devices, growing an industry and providing textless messages for millions of users.
Read the full article at: www.nytimes.com
Check out these stats from the New York Times‘ fascinating exploration of GIF culture:
- 23 million GIFs are posted to Tumblr every day.
- Facebook Messenger sees more than five million pass through daily.
- Slack counts more than two million GIF integrations each month.
The importance of visual content cannot be understated. We live—and market in—an age of ever-increasing competition for ever-decreasing attention spans. Study after study shows captivating imagery leads to better engagement. According to an ongoing research survey conducted by Software Advice and Adobe, images are the most important factor in optimal social media content. GIFs are a mini-vehicle for storytelling, capturing emotions, and communicating them in a concise way that words and pictures alone cannot.
GIF stand for Graphics Interchange Format, and it was born before the popular explosion of video. In fact, the GIF is probably the grandfather of Web 2.0 video. The GIF tells a story more than a static image ever could – it is literally a series of timed images patched together
Part of the fun is that there seems to be a GIF for any social situation you might find yourself in.
But GIFs increasingly have a more serious side, too—they can be a way to tell a story, explain a piece of information with more depth, or (yes, really!) conduct a conversation. For example, NASA uses GIFs of satellite imagery to transit important information, and Buzzfeed recently used GIFs to explain Greece’s debt crisis.
If you’re ready to add some GIFs to your online personality (or just up your GIF game) here are 10 social media moments to give GIFs a try.
Long live the GIF!