How To Use GIFs in ThingLink Images

Louise Jones

Whether you pronounce it gif or jif, we can all agree that GIFs are one of the most fun media types. Not as difficult to produce as video, but far more eye grabbing than still images, they are a simple way to attract attention and animate your content.  GIFs allow ThingLink users to bring motion and life to traditionally still media units. 

Even better, they can be incorporated into ThingLink at all levels. There are three ways to use GIFs in ThingLink:

#1 GIF As a Background Image

via Europa Press

Large GIFs can be uploaded as a background image and tagged. In this example from Europa Press, they’ve tagged a GIF that animates hand signals from around the world. Instead of just reading about what these different gestures mean, viewers can see exactly which gestures they should know, and which they should avoid!

How: To tag a GIF, either upload a .gif file or use the GIF’s url on the create page.

#2 GIF in a Tag


via Virgin Media
GIFs can also be a great addition to the tag content. This could be a huge asset to a retail image, showing how the product moves. Sports publishers can bet on GIFs to recap complex plays. Even internal documents benefit from a GIF that shows team members exactly what they need to click in the company intranet. Unlike videos, the viewer does not need to do an additional click to play the content. GIFs run automatically ensuring that your animation is seen.

HowTo add a GIF to a tag, paste the GIF’s url into the link field of the tag editor.  You can retrieve GIF’s from websites like Imgur.

#3 GIF as a Custom Icon

via BBC

The final way to incorporate GIFs is in a custom icon. Not only is this a striking first impression for your image, it can interact with the background image to animate the entire experience. In the above image from the BBC, the sleeping Zzz act as icons while doing anything but putting the reader to sleep.

HowUse the upper right menu to navigate to settings. In the Tag Icons tab, upload a .gif file as a default custom icon. You need a PRO, Whitelabel or Premium Education upgrade to use custom icons. 

How will you use GIFs in your ThingLink images? Share you examples with us in the comments.


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