“GIF” Moving!

Written by Kim Chapman, Senior Account Executive

GIF stands for “Graphics Interchange Format”. It’s a computer file format that uses a type of compression called “lossless” compression so that the image quality is not sacrificed as the file size reduces.

An animated GIF is multiple GIFs compressed together into 1 file, rotating one after the other. This compression without loss of quality makes it an ideal candidate for email. (Flash is not supported by most email clients.)

So why would someone want to use an animated GIF in an email? Here are a couple good uses:

  • To grab attention
  • To draw someone’s eye to a specific message
  • To show more without taking up as much space (This is especially useful in email if you want to display equally important information while keeping your email short, clean, and simple.

Before using this animation, here are some words of wisdom:
GIF animation is supported in most email clients, but not all. In a couple of clients, only the first frame displays. So to prevent a freeze frame fiasco, just make sure you are happy with what is featured on the first frame and that it doesn’t need the other frames to make sense. Also, I talk about relevancy in a lot of my posts. If you’re going to use GIF animation, make sure it’s relevant. In other words, don’t use a dancing cat just for the heck of it. (Who would ever use a dancing cat GIF anyways …)

Still not sure if you want to give animated GIFs a try? You can always try a test (using a control, of course.) You may find that animation increases click response and possibly sales.

If you’d like some help implementing emails, gif or no gif, email me at kchapman@twochicago.com