For years, the largest social network has resisted the popular looping animation format.
For years, Facebook insisted that GIFs might create a cluttered and chaotic feed for users, full of memes and irrelevant internet humour.
The auto-play video feature has been bringing users’ walls to life for 18 months, but now the platform has begun to roll out support for GIFs.
By pasting the image URL into the status box, users can now share their favourite looping images to their network of friends and family.
Before now, Giphy had developed a workaround to allow some GIFs to break through, but now users have the entire internet of GIFs to choose from.
Twitter has been supporting GIFs since mid-2014.
What Does This Mean for Marketers?
By now, everyone should know that old adage, “content is king.”
In which case, microcontent is the heir to the throne.
Vines, short videos, infosnippets and GIFs are the latest gadgets in content marketing’s arsenal.
However, Brand pages aren’t currently able to share GIFs, as the newest function rolls out across Facebook.
AdWeek contacted Facebook, who issued this statement:
“We built support for animated GIFs to help people express themselves in fun new ways on Facebook. Like many features that we release on Facebook, we want to ensure that this drives a great experience for people first before rolling it out more widely. While Pages cannot currently post GIFs, we are exploring ways to enable this in the future.”
When GIFs do work for Brand pages, businesses will have another method to engage new and existing audiences, provided they can create and share entertaining, on-brand GIFs.
Our team are no strangers to GIFs – check out the Meet myclever™ Agency series to see our prowess – so we put a few of the popular GIF sharing platforms to the test, with varying results.
Giphy GIFs loaded a thumbnail that, when clicked began looping like a native GIF ought to.
Tumblr GIFs do much the same, with a state-the-obvious “GIF” play button
When Facebook has rolled the function out completely, we expect to see more of the humour that starts on the likes Reddit and Tumblr find its way to larger audiences.
Perhaps this is the gateway for marketers to start making the most of those niche platforms.
Over To You
What do you think? Share some of your favourite GIFs with us.