Who run the world? Girls. Who run the internet? Cats. And how do cats communicate? Well, hatred mostly. But if they were possessed of opposable thumbs, you know it’d be gifs.
If you're new to gifs, never fear – your friendly noisy little monkeys have got you covered. Here’s our guide to the best reaction gifs you need when navigating the world of the soshul meeds. Bookmark it, file it, come back to it for all those times when words – and even emojis – just won’t do. Thank us later!
1. When you get spam likes.
2. When your perfect tweet is over 140 characters.
3. When your brilliant Facebook post reaches hardly any people.
4. When your identical post reaches thousands of people.
5. When it’s Friday and you’ve had the best social week ever.
6. When you write a seriously great piece of content.
7. When you don’t understand your content topic but you write about it anyway.
8. When you get to 11 likes on Instagram.
9. When you get loads of followers for no reason.
10. When you crop a picture to the exact pixels you wanted it to be.
11. When your boss asks you to tweet the annual report.
12. When your parents try to act like they understand Twitter.
13. When you put paid behind a post.
14. When you see someone trying to make a hashtag catch on.
15. When you nearly post something on the wrong client account and your whole life flashes before your eyes.
16. When your content gets copied without credit.
17. When someone says you can get 1000s of followers with just one link.
18. When you see someone using hashtags on Facebook.
19. When you lose a follower.
20. When someone asks you to explain what you do for a living.
21. When you’ve scheduled content for the entire week by midday on Monday.
22. When you think you’re popular on Facebook but it’s just notifications for the pages you manage.
No longer the sole prerogative of Tumblr blogs or Reddit threads, gifs have become commonplace across all forms of social media. First created in 1987 by Steve Whilhite, the Graphics Interchange Format (ooo, fancy) allows you to visually communicate your ~feelz in a way that stands out from the content-inundated internet. It’s the same kind of appeal as emojis, but it moves!
And, just as smartphones drove the rise of the emoji, mobile devices are propelling gifs out of the depths of the internet and into the everyday. Facebook introduced gif messaging back in March 2015, and now reports more than five million of these snazzy little snippets being sent through its service each day. Adam Leibsohn, the CEO of Giphy (a website for finding and creating gifs with more than 50 million unique users each month), puts their appeal down to their accessibility. “Typing is an antiquated input method,” he says, “And you can’t express emotional dimension adequately with just a handful of emoji.” We hear ya, Adam.
Smart brands have already hopped on board the gif-mobile, with sites like Buzzfeed regularly using gifs to explain everything from the Greek debt crisis to the UN Climate Summit. NASA uses gifs of satellite imagery to transmit info, and San Diego Zoo basically won the internet with its panda bear response to Twitter supporting gifs back in 2014.
Small, share-friendly and quick to consume, good gif content is primed and ready to go viral - you’ve only got to look at the google trends for ‘reaction gif’ to see what we mean. If you don’t already have a ‘gif reactions’ folder on your computer, it’s time to start building one now – especially if you work in online marketing. Tweets with images, videos or gifs have a much higher engagement rate than boring old text posts, but with approximately ten zillion of these things floating around the internet (nb: statistic may/may not be made up), these 25 are just a starting point!
So there you have it - go forth and conquer the world of the gif! If you’re a seasoned gif pro, tweet us with your favourite @NoisyMonkey.
Oh, and most importantly, it’s gif. Not jif. No debate.