While the debate over the pronunciation of GIF or JIF still wages on, the need for brands to create them for their fans isn't contested. As a company, we had only created a few batches of GIFs and stickers over the years. With the continued rise of meme culture, stickers for Instagram Stories/Reels, and TikTok video, we developed a strategy specifically to grow earned media and mentions through branded GIFs and stickers our fans, and beyond could use. For objective goals, we aimed for a lofty 100M+ uses and views of our GIFS. A tall order indeed, but never underestimate the power of the Graphics Interchange Format.
To create large batches of GIFs and Stickers, we worked closely with the graphic designer at our inhouse agency while developing a strategy. While GIFs are just fun to create, everything we do must have a strategic purpose and serve the larger business goals. Taking those goals into factoring which batches of GIFs to begin with, we started with our larger campaigns, such as Mardi Gras, Halloween Horror Nights, and Holidays at Universal. From there, we moved onto individual attraction support – breaking out each individual property to create around. As with any true creative partnership, we developed loose guidelines with our designer and let them do what they do best – create. The creative freedom led to some truly impressive work, but the real tell would be how the fans adopted these new tools.
During 2023, we uploaded over 600 new GIFs and Stickers to our Giphy account. To our surprise, our metrics greatly exceeded our goals, proving the demand for what we created. We learned what works and what doesn’t with our audience, which will help with future batches of GIF/Sticker content.