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Special Project

Special Project
From the 11th Annual Shorty Awards

Children's Miracle Network Hospitals Uses GIFs to Engage with Supporters

Audience Honor in GIFs


Our objective was to create a way to engage supporters of Children's Miracle Network Hospitals® (CMN Hospitals) in a fun and cause-connected way using GIFs featuring pediatric patients treated at CMN Hospitals. We also wanted to utilize the Giphy platform with our branded GIFs as a way to raise awareness for children's hospitals and their need of donations.

Having noticed the popularity of reaction GIFs, we strived for a way to allow the average user who may not be familiar with our organization to support our cause by using our GIFs and help us raise awareness for local children's hospitals.

We utilized existing video footage and captured new footage to create nearly 700 reaction GIFs and animated stickers of our pediatric patients who have served or are serving as ambassadors for the 170 children's hospitals in the United States and Canada within our network.

Strategy and Execution

Our strategy included planning a day of GIF creation with our 11 current national ambassadors. We captured hundreds of reaction GIFs and also GIFs with props celebrating partner and hospital milestones, corporate partner fundraising campaigns, and recognitions for our top Extra Life and Dance Marathon participants. We had our ambassadors wear branded t-shirts with the CMN Hospitals balloon logo to ensure those outside our audience would be able to make a connection to our cause. In post-production we added a transparent text with "@cmnhospitals" to the corner of each GIF before uploading to our brand verified account.

These reaction GIFs have been used all across CMN Hospitals owned social channels, specifically on the @CMNHospitals and @ExtraLife4Kids Twitter accounts. Examples of use: for CMNHospitals peer-to-peer fundraising program Extra Life, we utilized a variety of GIFs to give recognition to gamers who raised funds for their local CMN Hospital including GIFs featuring pediatric patients clapping, giving thumbs up, making a heart with their hands, etc. One especially impactful way we engaged with our top Extra Life fundraisers was through GIFs of ambassadors presenting them with a virtual Hero Medal for fundraising $500+ for their local CMN Hospital. We've seen a very positive response from recipients of these GIFs — as they feel like it's a direct thank you or cheer from a child for whom they're raising money.

We also created nearly 200 animated stickers featuring various reactions from our pediatric patients. Anyone with an Instagram can use our branded stickers of pediatric patients in their Instagram stories. In fact, our GIFs and stickers can be found anywhere the Giphy API is.


Since we started our account in the fall of 2018, our nearly 700 uploaded GIFs and stickers have more than 830 million organic views, helping to raise awareness for our cause to new audiences. Our goal was to engage supporters of CMN Hospitals in a fun and cause-connected way using GIFs featuring pediatric patients. We've seen a tremendous response to our GIFs not only from our community of supporters, but from general audiences as well.

Through the use of our GIFs online, we've been able to thank, celebrate, congratulate and cheer on supporters of children's hospitals near and far with the faces of kids who rely on their children's hospital for care.


Entrant Company / Organization Name

Children's Miracle Network Hospitals


Entry Credits