If a picture can speak thousand words, then a GIF will probably speak a million words, for sure.
GIFs are hybrids of a static image and a video. These days GIFs are becoming popular because of their ability to enhance the quality of the message to be communicated by a brand and hence meet audience’s expectation from the content. Whether it is an animated presentation or a particular scene which conveys the information in a better manner, GIFs can really send the message across in an effective manner. This is why most marketers are including GIFs in their Digital marketing strategies.
Why are GIFs so popular?
GIFs have gained popularity over the years and they really grab the attention of users. Their popularity may be attributed to the following:
- Easy to share
- More appealing and effective than a static image.
- Cheaper and easier to make than a video.
- Mobile friendly.
- Easily attracts attention.
- Easy way to engage your audience and promote your brand.
Do you want to know how to create a GIF? It’s not rocket science. All you need is the right set of tools and relevant images to create it.
So, let me tell you the step by step process to create an animated GIF in Photoshop and then I will also discuss few apps and tools for creating GIFs in few clicks.
Creating An Animated GIF in Photoshop
http://bit.ly/2aFSLsT used this link for the pictures of Photoshop tutorial, but we need to take our own screen shots.
Step 1 of 5
Import the photos you want in your GIF
- Keep all the photos in a folder and name them as frame 1, frame 2 and so on.
- Now open Photoshop and go to File then Scripts finally to Load Files into Stack.
Now click on the Browse button and find the photos you want to use. Select the photos you want to use and then click open.
For importing the photos into a single layered file, Click OK .
On the right side of your workspace, you can see a number of new layers in the Layers panel
These individual layers are nothing but the frames of the animated GIF.
Step 2 of 5
- Opening the Timeline Panel
- To open the Timeline panel, just go to Window then to Timeline.
The screen will look like this, and the timeline window will be created at the bottom of the screen.
Click the arrow on the button in the middle of the panel and select Create Frame Animation. Just click the button in order to create a new frame animation.
Step 3 of 5
Creating the frame Animation from the layers
On the upper right corner of the Timeline panel Press the Menu button and then go to Make Frames from Layers.
By doing this, you will be able to convert the layers present in the Layers panel directly into individual frames in your GIF animation.
Press the Play button at the bottom of the timeline panel to preview the animation. Check this carefully and try to fix any issue that may be highlighted.
Please insert an image here highlighting the play button
Step 4 of 5
Set the time for each frame.
For specifying the time each frame will appear before going to the next frame, click the time below each frame and set it according to your need.
Now set the animation to loop by clicking on the repeat menu at the bottom of the timeline panel and select the number of times you want loop the animations.
Click the Play button at the bottom of the Timeline panel to start the animation. Pressing the spacebar can also initiate this action.
Step 5 of 5
Export the animation as a GIF
For exporting the animation as a GIF, Just go to File then to Export finally to Save for Web (Legacy)
Choose GIF 128 Dithered in the Preset menu and 256 in the Colors menu.
If you are using the GIF online or want to limit the file size of the animation, change Width and Height fields in the Image Size options.
For using the GIF online and limit the file size of the animation, go to Image Size and change Width and Height fields.
In the Looping Options menu, choose forever.
To preview your GIF in a web browser, in the lower left corner of the Export window press the Preview button.
Now Press Save and select a location where you wish to save your animated GIF file.
Now you’re ready to upload this GIF to use in your Digital Marketing Campaign.
This was the ideal method to create GIFs using Photoshop.
Now let’s have a quick tour of the top 5 most important tools used to create your own GIFs with least efforts.
1. Giphy GIF maker
It is an amazing GIF making tool that enables you to create GIFs directly from a video file on your computer or even from a YouTube/ Vimeo link.
You just have to copy the URL of the video and paste it or you can also upload the video file from your computer. You can add caption, decide the starting point of your GIF as well as the duration of your GIF. It’s easy to use interface will help you create GIF effortlessly in few clicks.
GIF.com is a super easy to use tool to create GIF any video online. Whether it’s a Video on YouTube or Vine, what you just need is its URL. Similar to Giphy GIF maker, simply copy the URL of the Video and Paste it on the website and click on create Gif. You are done. You can also upload or drag and drop the video on your computer.
It also supports the features like cropping the Gif, Adding Caption to Gif, Adding sticker and so on.
Gif Maker.me is another simple tool for creating animated gifs. It also facilitates you to make slideshows using images, video animations with music without any hassle.
This is a user friendly free tools that comes with the features that help you to change the canvas size, edit the speed of transitions as well as control the number of times the Gif is repeated.
Imgflip is another free online tool which is comparable to Gifmaker.me. It allows you to add a caption to meme or image as well as create Gif from a video or image. It also supports you to make a pie chart. But, if you want to export the final Gif without watermark then you have to pay for it to become a pro member.
If you want to create Gifs from your desktop screen for making tutorials or step by step guide for using a product or service, to ensure easily accessible customer service, then you cannot ignore CloudApp.
It captures screen recordings and screenshots and converts directly into a sharable link. Thus, instead of writing lengthy emails and uploading the attachments you can just share the link and give a much better visual explanation. You can also download the screen recording in the form of a Gif and share it as it is.
These were some of the very simple ways to create your own GIFs. Once you have learnt how to create Gifs yourself, you can use it in several ways in your Digital Marketing Campaign:
- To tell a story in the most effective manner.
- To enhance your Brand Image.
- To create a small and self-explanatory presentation.
- To present you product in a better way.
- To explain the process or how to use a product or service.
- To create an Advertisement and so on.
Ready to go
Now that you have understood the ways you can create and use Gifs. What are you waiting for?
Create your own Gifs and share in the comments section; how you are going to use it in your Digital Marketing Campaign.