The GIFs That Keep on Giving
You’ve seen them on Twitter, embedded in slide decks, on Facebook, on your phone. They’re a shorthand way of communicating a shared experience — they’re the GIFs that keep on giving.
GIF stands for Graphics Interchange Format. It is usually a sequence from video, or an animation of a group of images. The file is compressed and plays on a loop. If you want to convey a message to engage a wide audience, but you’re not a professional-grade graphics guru, then quick and easy GIF makers are for you.
However, there are a few pointers about using GIFs:
- Less is more. Have three big points to illustrate? GIFs could work. Have 50 pieces of data? No.
- Think about your audience. Is a GIF of a child having a mishap more appropriate than a scene from Real Housewives of Atlanta? Is a Tim & Eric GIF a little obscure for your boardroom?
- Check that your GIF works. In some formats your animation will show as a still image, or worse, all the photos you used to create your animation.
- Is the tone right? A hilarious GIF may not be right for a poor earnings report. Or worse.