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GIFs: Back and Better than Ever

  
  
  
  
  

The GIF, pronounced “JIF” in case you weren’t sure, was invented in 1987 in order for weather maps to save bandwidth on a dial-up Internet connection. So, why are we talking about GIFs now, in 2015?

This format, a combination of pictures that create an endlessly looping, moving image, has been around for a while. However, the recent introduction of autoplay and emphasis on short-form video on many social media platforms has made GIFs relevant again—this time as a new and unique advertising tool.

GIFs, and other short-form animated content, are perfectly aligned to be advertisements on most social media platforms. Facebook, Twitter and Instagram now all have an autoplay feature where video plays automatically, without user action. Additionally, this short-form moving image is just the right length to be uploaded to Instagram and short enough that users will actively pay attention. GIFs can also be directly embedded into a tweet or a Facebook post, making the viewing process user-friendly.

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GIF courtesy of Giphy

Instead of advertising through words and still frames, some brands have started to work with Giphy and Tumblr to create branded GIF content. Brands like DiGiorno Pizza, seen above, have used these animated loops on Twitter and found that they increased engagement among followers.

 

How Brands Use Cinemagraphs to Capture Audience Attention Heinekin Brandfolder

Cinemagraph courtesy of Brandfolder

A specific type of GIF, the cinemagraph, has gained popularity on Instagram recently. This type of GIF is a still image with one animated component, and was popularized by digital artist Kevin Burg and photographer Jamie Beck.

The cinemagraph is seemingly hypnotic and draws consumer attention when scrolling down one’s Facebook, Twitter or Instagram news feed.  Toyota, Heineken, and Gilt have all used cinemagraph advertisements on Instagram and many other brands are following in their footsteps on Facebook as well.

With the advent of autoplay and the infiltration of advertising content on social media platforms, the use of GIFs and cinemagraphs can be a strategic way for brands to differentiate themselves and capture consumers’ attention. However, it is important for brands not to abuse and overuse GIFS and instead use them only when it is the best way to tell their story.  


Social News Roundup | June 19, 2015

  
  
  
  
  

1. Study: Facebook Posts to Brands’ Pages Fall on Deaf Ears

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Photo courtesy of Social Times

87 percent of posts to brands’ Facebook pages go unanswered. Active pages responded to only 37 percent of posts to their page. Find out more about what page administrators should do here.

 

2. How to Improve Organic Reach on Facebook (Infographic)

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Photo courtesy of Social Times

There has been a consistent decline in organic reach for brands on Facebook. Social Times offers some possible solutions. 

 

3. Social Media is Stuck in the Workplace Friend Zone (Infographic)

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Photo courtesy of Social Times

Most people see social media as a useful way to keep in touch with friends. Its reputation as a distraction keeps social media from becoming valuable in the workplace. See the full infographic


4. Pinterest Unveils Smarter Search Feature and Verified Accounts

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Photo courtesy of Social Times

Pinterest users can now see what topics are trending on the platform. Additionally, brands can become verified with a red check mark so that users know that their pages are legitimate. Find out more here.  

 

5. Twitter to Advertisers: 100% Viewability on Autoplay Videos- Or It’s Free!

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Photo courtesy of Social Times

Twitter will only charge advertisers for videos if they have been watched for at least three seconds and are fully in view on the device. As users scroll through the Twitter feed, native videos or GIFs will play automatically, but sound will only play when the users taps on the video. Learn more here.

 

6. Here Are the 12 Best Facebook Marketing Campaigns From the Past Year

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Photo courtesy of AdWeek

Check out this year’s most successful social campaigns on Facebook, including the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge and Always’ #LikeAGirl.

Social News Roundup | June, 12, 2015

  
  
  
  
  

1. 3 Surprising Benefits of Scheduling Your Tweets 

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Photo courtesy of AdWeek

Scheduling your Tweets ahead of time helps to create a stronger and more consistent brand voice, allows you to be creative and can relieve stress. Read more here.

2. American Pharoah May Be The Most Brand Friendly Horse Ever

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Photo courtesy of AdWeek

The last time a horse won a Triple Crown, 1978, was years before many advances in the digital world and ad industry. Even before American Pharoah’s win, he had marketing deals, and was making history in advertising. See some of his deals here

3. 5 Ways to Maintain Brand Cohesion on Social Media

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Photo courtesy of Social Times

Social Times shares the 5 ways to make sure that your brand has a consistent voice on social media. Check out the full infographic.

 

4. May Media Publishers Report: Bleacher Report, BuzzFeed Video on the Rise

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Photo courtesy of AdWeek

BuzzFeed Video has seen the highest increase in engagement- 45% up from April- across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

See the full report.

 

5. Instagram Cleans Up Its Website To Mimic Mobile and Make Photos Pop

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Photo courtesy of Mashable 

 

 

 

 

Take a look for yourself.

 

6. Facebook Now Wants You to Explore What’s Trending in 5 Topics

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Photo courtesy of Mashable

Facebook is testing the organization of its Trending section on the homepage. The updates to this area will help make Facebook an effective distribution platform for publishers to share their content.

Here’s more information.

Social News Roundup | May 29, 2015

  
  
  
  
  

1) Not one brand ranks in the Top 100 for YouTube

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Image courtesy of Adweek

Native YouTube creators have loyal followings most brands can only dream of. To keep from falling too far behind, brands should take note of the tips found here... 

 

2) When it comes to Facebook, timing is everything

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Image courtesy of SocialTimes

50% of all likes, comments, and shares will be posted in the first 60 minutes. Posting at night will get you the most of all three. For the exact hour, click here... 

 

3) The good and the bad of encouraging employees to be brand advocates. 

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Image courtesy of Adweek

Employees can be your biggest and best brand advocates. On the flip side, they might have arguments on social media with your company prominently attached to their profile. You can find both sides of the argument here... 

 

4) No surprise here – Brands focus the majority of their efforts on Facebook.

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Image courtesy of SocialTimes

Facebook is still the most heavily used social network in the world, capturing over 30% of world social marketing spend. Find the full article here... 

 

5) Ever receive a message and have no idea who it’s from? 

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Image courtesy of Adweek

Facebook has got your back with some contextual info. The social media network will now give you pertinent information on how you might know the person in question. Click here for the full article. 

Social News Roundup | May 22, 2015

  
  
  
  
  

1) Facebook IQ shares the blueprint for successful summer branding. 

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Photo courtesy of SocialTimes

As people head outdoors, their mobile devices come with them. This summer focus on mobile, as 70% of people who connected to Facebook did so through mobile. To see the full infographic click here.

 

2) Social media etiquette lessons: 7 ways to say thank you on Twitter. 

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Photo courtesy of Adweek

Just because you're online doesn't mean manners fly out the window. Retweeting and favoriting are the easiest ways to thank someone, but you'll find more ways here...

 

3) Snapchat's CEO reveals why he said no to Facebook's $3 billion offer.

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Photo courtesy of Mashable

"There are very few people in the world who get to build a business like this...I think trading that for some short-term gain isn't very interesting." Find the full article here...

 

4) Social networks are shown to increase stress, are we better off without them? 

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Photo courtesy of The Huffington Post

You might think that social networks are a necessity to life, yet only 60% of Americans belong to one. A full 83% of respondents claimed belonging to a social network made their lives more stressful. Is it time to disconnect? Click here for more. 

 

5) Its official: President Obama is on Twitter and is breaking records.

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Photo courtesy of Adweek

Banter between President Obama and Bill Clinton stole the show, but within hours trolls were going after the POTUS. Find the full article here...

Social News Roundup | May 15, 2015

  
  
  
  
  

1) Why courting enthusiasts can take your brand to the next level. 

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Image courtesy of Adweek

Marketing-inspired word of mouth generates 2x the sales of advertising, and those customers have a 37% higher retention rate. Learn more here... 

 

2) Research shows mobile consumer spending is highest on Sunday.

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Photo courtesy of Adweek

When marketing, take advantage of Friday and Sunday, the two days in which consumers are most likely to complete purchases. You can find the full article at Adweek.com.

 

3) Periscope and Meerkat continue their explosive growth. 

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Photo courtesy of SocialTimes

You should be paying attention to mobile. By 2017 video will account for 30% of internet traffic and 70% of traffic on mobile devices. Find more info here... 

 

4) The new Facebook carousal ad format sees 30%-50% lower cost per conversion.

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Photo courtesy of Adweek

The new format lets advertisers put more content in front of viewers, upping the chance viewers see something that pulls them in. Learn more about it at Adweek.com

 

5) How iHeartRadio racked up over 14 billion social impressions for one event.

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Photo courtesy of Adweek

iHearRadio beats its own record by taking a social media first approach. Find the full article here...

 

 

 

 

 

Social News Roundup | May 8, 2015

  
  
  
  
  

1) Has 'Mobilegeddon' affected your site's traffic? 

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Photo courtesy of Adweek

Here's how its affecting others.

 

2) Marketers asked, Twitter listened.

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Photo courtesy of Adweek

 Video auto-play is coming in late June. Read more here... 

 

3) Is your content missing its mark?

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Photo courtesy of Adweek

Here's how to deliver a focused marketing strategy. See the infographic here...

 

4) 7 tools to help you discover great Twitter content

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Photo courtesy of Adweek

Use the tools here to keep your content fresh and engaging.

 

5) Are you posting too much on Facebook?

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Photo courtesy of Adweek

How post frequency affects organic reach. For the full article, click here...

Social News Roundup | May 1, 2015

  
  
  
  
  

1) The lowdown on how to market to millennial parents

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Image courtesy of Adweek

As the first truly digital-native generation, millennials operate by a different set of rules than previous generations. For the new rules, click here... 

 

2) Use this hack to automatically post your Instagram photos to Twitter

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Photo courtesy of Adweek

Using the popular app If This Then That (IFTTT), you can set up a recipe to automatically post your Instagram as tweets, accomplishing twice the work just as fast. Click here for a detailed how-to. 

3) Instagramers take note, you can now tag picture using emoji hashtags # 👏👍😄

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Image courtesy of Mashable

It's time to add a little emotion to your posts. To see what else Instagram added, click here... 

 

4) Did you know: Low value marketing pushes consumers away from brands.

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Image courtesy of Adweek

Poor advertising practices breed negativity towards brands who prepetuate them. For more details, click here... 

 

5) 7 things to consider before setting up a Facebook page. 

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Image courtesy of Adweek

If you can't give clear answers to these questions, you might be jumping the gun. Click here for the seven questions.

Social News Roundup | April 24, 2015

  
  
  
  
  

1) A new app Clear rids the ghosts of your social media past

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Photo courtesy of Mashable

Using computer algorithms, Clear finds and deletes embarrassing posts from your social media channels. To find out more, click here... 

 

2) Automation is the future for digital marketing, but not for social media.

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Photo curtousy of Adweek

While 98% of marketing companies seek dedicated marketing automation software, very few want the same for their social media. Find out why here...

 

3) Want a 43% engagement rate on FB? Then don't sleep on Wichit.

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Photo courtesy of Adweek

The award-winning app lets your followers vote on which option they like best. To read more, click here...

 

4) Never awkwardly crop your face again.

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Photo courtesy of Mashable

Use this infographic to learn all the tips and tricks for perfectly sizing your social media images. To view, click here...


5) You just gave your all to build up your social following – now here's how to keep it.

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Photo courtesy of Adweek

Here are 7 tips on how to retain your followers on social media. 

Social News Roundup | December 12, 2014

  
  
  
  
  

1) A look back on Social Media in 2014

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Photo Courtesy of Media Bistro

You may be surprised which 2014 marketing predictions came true, and which ones didn’t. Find out here.

Facebook and YouTube released their ‘2014 Year in Review’ videos this week where they highlighted some of the most-discussed topics and viral videos of the year. 

 

2) Facebook introduces Call-to-Action Buttons

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Photo Courtesy of All Facebook

The seven calls to action that will be available include: Book Now, Contact Us, Use App, Play Game, Shop Now, Sign Up and Watch Video. Read more...

 

3) Twitter releases tailored audiences for their mobile apps

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Photo Courtesy of Media Bistro

The purpose of the product is to help users “drive the highest possible ROI in app install and app engagement campaigns” as stated by Kelton Lynn, Group Product Maneger at Twitter. Read more...

 

4) LinkedIn slowly rolling out a new design for users

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Photo Courtesy of Social Times

The redesigned homepage features an updated dashboard, a “Keep in Touch” box as well as an area designated for the site’s publishing platform, LinkedIn Pulse. Read more...

 

5) Facebook gets Trendier

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Photo Courtesy of Media Post

Facebook adds a live feed and other features to the Trending section on their page. Read more...

 

6) Instagram surpasses Twitter in number of users

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Photo Credit Social Times

This week Instagram hit a milestone and reached 300 million followers vs. Twitter’s 284 million. Read more...

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