14 Brands Nailing GIFs and Looping Videos on Instagram

by Federica Rustico

12 min read
Last Updated: January 04, 2023

Even with the advent of emoticons, memes, and stickers, the use of GIFs is continuing to enjoy a meteoric increase in popularity. GIFs continue to be a highly viable and popular choice for companies that are wanting to swiftly transmit messages, despite the fact that its close relative, short-form video, is now enjoying its moment in the limelight owing to the rise of TikTok.

Because there are so many moving pictures and videos that compete for our attention throughout the day, it is more difficult than ever for marketers to ensure that their content stands out from the competition, particularly on social media sites such as Instagram. But let me tell you a little secret… GIFs have a special superpower that short-form video doesn’t—they loop! Don’t believe me, check out how that impacts consumers psychologically!

If you’re wondering how to use GIFs in your Instagram brand account, here’s a collection of some of the most innovative and successful instances of GIFs and looping videos that have been produced by renowned businesses. So go ahead, get some inspiration and get creative! Ready, set, go!

1. Yankee Candle

Yankee Candle, which has been around since 1969, is the industry standard when it comes to designing, producing, and marketing quality scented candles. The firm has earned a reputation for its superior goods, extensive inventory, and affordable prices. But most importantly, the candle's scents are unforgettable. Candles for the holidays, including Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Valentine's Day, are just a few of the many seasonal and holiday-themed goods available from Yankee Candle.

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When it comes to making a special event or holiday stand out, Yankee Candle always goes the extra mile. And it did just that in its 2022 Pride campaign. How? By posting a GIF to its social media accounts. It made a limited edition Pride candle collection, and showed its candle through a looping video, inviting users to learn more about its collection. Clever, huh?

2. Klarna

Swedish fintech company, Klarna, also uses GIFs in its marketing strategy. As a provider of payment solutions for merchants, banks and consumers across Europe and the United States, Klarna offers services such as financing, direct payments, pay after delivery, and installment plans. Their mission is to make paying as simple, safe and smooth as possible. So, how could they possibly use GIFs in their marketing?

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By grabbing their followers’ attention to a contest! Instagram giveaways are a great way for companies to gain exposure and build their brand. By offering giveaways, companies can reach a larger audience and generate more engagement with their content. Not to mention, giveaways can act as an incentive for customers to follow a company on Instagram and increase their customer base. So how do you grab your followers’ attention? By using GIFs in your giveaway! Klarna wanted to drive traffic to its Klarna.usa account on Instagram, and it did so by giving away 5 of Terlfar’s hottest new bags. The GIF shows followers the 360° view of how the bag looks like, making it impossible for followers to opt out!

3. Calm 

An application for meditation and mental health called Calm posted on its social media platforms one of the methods that Calm uses to guide its followers through micro meditation. Its content often comprises straightforward, symmetrical images, which may be animated or photographic, with the goal of assisting users in concentrating and practicing deep breathing as they scroll through their social feeds.

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Because of the mix of peaceful soundtrack and ambient colors, these GIFs offer fantastic little respites. While I was lazily surfing Instagram, I came across several of them, and they are wonderful because they provide lovely small respites. Thanks to auto-looping on mobile, followers may, in principle, spend as much or as little time as they desire concentrating on their breathing, or just taking a time-out. They have complete control over how much time they spend doing either. It is an original and cutting-edge approach to using moving pictures to underline brand purpose and tie in with imagery that is comparable to that which can be seen on the app. Great job, Calm!

4. Google

As a demonstration of the brand's commitment to aesthetics, Google has generated some very polished and almost hypnotic GIFs on social media, which may not come as a surprise to some people. Despite the fact that each was developed relatively differently with a specific target in mind, there is a seamless consistency that links in with the company's identity across all of the materials. 

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Everyone knows that Google’s homepage logo changes based on specific events and holidays. For the 4th of July, in tribute to the USA’s independence day, Google published a GIF that perfectly portrays how Americans spend this holiday. It depicts the typical BBQ experience. 

Although Google has been gradually spicing up its feed by adding more short-form video, which is symbolic of the rapid expansion of social media, its GIFs are still as polished as they were when they were first introduced.

5. Haribo

Even Haribo, the German confectionery company founded in 1920, can’t stay away from GIFs. While it’s best known for its gummy candy products such as the Gold-Bears, Happy Cola, and Peaches, Haribo also produces other types of candy, chocolate, licorice, and marshmallows. So how did they integrate GIFs into their marketing?

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By publishing a looping GIF of their colorful limited edition gummy bears, showing all of the colors and almost definitely grabbing the attention of all gummy bear lovers! Their campaign asked which color followers preferred and encouraged them to learn how to win their own limited edition candy! Simple but gold!

6. Starbucks

American coffee company and coffeehouse chain, Starbucks, is another brilliant example of how brands can use GIFs on their Instagram. During the holiday season in particular, Starbucks promotes its very popular seasonal drinks menu with a nice mix of both animated photography and whimsical illustration to capture the characteristics of each beverage in question. This was done in order to highlight the seasonality of the drinks.

Its looping videos draw attention to one or two key ingredients or portray food that would go well with the beverage in hand. This may be done to replicate the mouth-watering effects of fan favorites like the Toffee Nut Latte. Many of the brand's posts prominently feature the limited-edition red cups that are being sold by the company.

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This animation technique has a strong connection to the overall brand because of the consistent use of the traditional color red and the emphasis placed on the cup as the primary focal point.

7. Deciem

On its social media platforms, the cosmetics company Deciem, which is an umbrella brand for more than ten beauty brands, one of which is the cult favorite The Ordinary, combines its signature whitewash aesthetic with attention-grabbing GIFs.

Its GIFs, along with the rest of its imagery and video material, represent the scientific and clinical branding that is recognised by skincare enthusiasts all over the globe. These GIFs include monotonous photography that is broken up by strong lettering and forms. Since the market for skincare has exploded in the face of the pandemic, helped in part by the growing popularity of self-care and TikTok trends, the brand has made every effort to inform and educate its fans about common skin concerns, its popular ingredients, and the scientifically proven benefits of using its products.

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Following are some particularly outstanding instances of how Deciem has accomplished this in an interesting manner. These examples make use of visuals to attract attention and complement the detailed informational descriptions that are located below the images.

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8. Monzo

Disruptive banking brand Monzo brings to life some aspects of its visually arresting images in order to attract attention to the advantages that clients will have access to if they subscribe to the company's premium service. Although the animation itself is not very complicated, it does a great job of enhancing the brand's contemporary and colourful image and directing the viewer's attention to the crucial aspects, the broken phone screen in this example. 

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A post shared by monzo (@monzo)

Monzo reinforces its image as a tech-forward challenger brand to more conventional banks by placing the mobile interface and its (now iconic) bank cards front and center of practically every piece of visual material it releases. This helps Monzo to better compete with more traditional banks.

In this particular illustration, the company distills all of the essential information about their mobile phone insurance relationship into a single picture in a way that is both ingenious and concise.

9. PayPal

Yes, even PayPal makes the list! Looping films created by PayPal emphasize and display user-generated material by using colors and forms that are consistent with the visual design of the brand.

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A post shared by PayPal (@paypal)

User-generated material is often kept by businesses for use on more ephemeral portions of social networks like Instagram Stories. This is especially the case with contributions that are centered on prose and have little to no visual appeal. It is really reassuring to see that PayPal has made the choice to tidy them up and add them to its main feed as a means of engaging its consumers in a manner that is more straightforward.

PayPal not only demonstrates that it is actively listening to its followers by posting interesting tidbits like this one, but it also invites its fans to participate in a conversation with the business by doing so.

10. Salesforce

As a component of the larger branding activities that the firm does, Salesforce enlists the assistance of the well-known personalities that its clientele have grown to know and like on the social media platform Instagram.

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The brand's images and video content place a significant emphasis on the company's mascots, which helps to maintain a sense of coherence across the feed. These characters, who are really beautifully created and, dare I say it, charming, are utilized in short movies as a manner of presenting tales or vital messages regarding Salesforce's capacity and features. These clips are used as a method of communicating with customers. The final product, which has attractive and smooth 3D effects, is a lovely method to foster debate about software, which can be a very dull subject.

11. Southern Comfort

Southern Comfort is a fruit-flavored whiskey-based liqueur made from neutral spirits with natural fruit extracts. Over the course of the last several months, Southern Comfort has focused a significant amount of its efforts and resources on publicizing the many ways in which its consumers and followers may get the same enjoyable experience from its spirits even if they are unable to visit bars and restaurants.

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The content draws attention to cocktail recipes that customers can prepare for themselves in the convenience (no pun intended) of their own homes via the use of vibrant exotic colors, sharp imagery, and amusing animated components that blend together to form a cohesive whole.

These GIFs and movies are a lot of fun to look at and present viewers with some fantastic serving recommendations. Accompanied with a step-by-step tutorial in the comments for each featured drink, the guides are included for each of the featured drinks.

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A post shared by Southern Comfort (@southerncomfort)

Their Valentine’s Day GIF portraying a person cheering with Southern Comfort is also a genius way to tell all those single people that Southern Comfort is there for them! “Southern Comfort beats the hell out of a cardboard heart filled with candy.” it does!

12. Discord 

Developed specifically for video gamers, Discord is a free service that allows users to communicate with one another through voice and text. Users may have a live conversation with one another through text, audio, or video. The technology may be put to use in a variety of contexts, including but not limited to gaming, socialising, teamwork, and conversation.

Their use of GIFs was in a trippy and colorful 360° turn of their mascot changing colors, symbolizing that “who I am on Discord is the real me”. Right on point.  

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13. The Great British Baking Show

Anyone who follows the Great British Bake Off on social media is aware that its accounts are quite active both during and outside of the times when the program is airing. It is abundantly clear that the teams responsible for design and marketing create a great deal of material in advance. This content may include anything from humorous food photographs to memes and video loops.

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A post shared by The Great British Bake Off (@britishbakeoff)

In addition to a substantial quantity of close-captioned video taken directly from the shooting, there is also some very imaginative stuff that has been tossed in for good measure. While informing their online following on current developments in a punchy and practical way, the persistent use of color and strong typography mimics the feel-good vibe that the event brings with it. A little of that good old Great British Baking Show humor never hurts, either!

14. Coco and Eve

Coco and Eve is a beauty and wellness brand that focuses on natural and organic hair and skincare products. Their products are made with natural and certified organic ingredients, and are free of sulfates, parabens, and other harsh chemicals. They offer a variety of hair and skincare products, including shampoos, conditioners, masks, oils, scrubs and more. 

So can you imagine how they’d use GIFs? To highlight their natural ingredients, of course! In this GIF, the brand has prebiotics and an ingredient feature, explaining how they are great for the skin too! 

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Wrapping up

These are just 14 examples of brands cleverly using GIFs in their marketing strategies. Whether you’re a fintech startup, a beauty brand or a food company, there are a myriad of ways that you can use GIFs to draw attention to your brands and products, or get a complex point across through simple imagery.

Can brands use GIFs on social media?

GIFs continue to be a highly viable and popular choice for companies that are wanting to swiftly transmit their messages. Their use is effective on any digital channel, including social media. Using GIFs on social media gives brands the possibility to create a personal connection win their followers, while also showing off their personality. Not to mention, creating your own GIFs for social media gives social media users the possibility to include them in their own posts.

How To Get Your Stickers On Instagram

1. Create a GIPHY profile.
2. Use your company's email address to create the GIPHY account
3. Make and submit a minimum of five stickers.
4. Sign up to get your brand's account verified
5. Wait to get confirmed
6. Put your stickers to work for you!

Are GIFs good for Instagram?

When you want to connect with your audience and increase brand recognition, custom GIFs are a fantastic tool to use. Instagram, however, doesn't allow you to create your own gifs, you'll have to use one of the free GIF makers available online to create them.