If you’ve spent any time on the internet, there’s a really good chance that you’ve seen memes and GIFs, especially on social media. They are used everywhere, and it may be time to jump on board and start using these uber-popular graphics in your job recruiting.
But before we jump into why you should use this type of visual content and how to create them, let’s define what GIFs and memes are, in case you are not that familiar with them.
A GIF (aka Graphic Interchange Format) is “a looping animation, rather than a static image.”
Here is an example with 2.8 million views:
According to Dictionary.com, a meme is “a cultural item in the form of an image, video, phrase, etc., that is spread via the Internet and often altered in a creative or humorous way.”
Here is an example: (insert meme)
Why Use GIFs and Memes?
Over the past decade, we’ve seen GIFs and memes explode and spread across the internet like wildfire. Why? Because they are funny, engaging, very relatable, and highly shareable.
Many businesses have noticed this trend and now use it as part of their marketing strategy. They have started creating more visual graphics because they see it as a way to increase engagement, build trust, and create relationships with their audiences. In the world of digital marketing and social media marketing, online engagement is everything. GIFs and memes can “help people view your brand with the same fondness and familiarity they do their friends.”
GIFs and memes are also a great way to break up large chunks of text in blog posts, emails, and other written content. Text fatigue can cause people to not read your message or information because it puts too much stress on their eyes and they get tired reading long paragraphs and lots of content.
So, how can recruiters and recruiting businesses use GIFs and memes? Simple: add them to your job listings, your profiles, and your emails when appropriate.
Using these popular graphics will help you:
- Connect with job seekers and seem more relatable
- Engage with your candidates
- Build trust and relationships because it makes you seem more human
- Bring awareness and recognition to your brand and business
- Possibly go viral if people share it
- Create a sense of community
These visual graphics can also help you become more recognizable to your candidates. They may remember you more from viewing these humorous pictures.
According to Dr. John Medina, a developmental molecular biologist, adding a picture can help people remember up to 65% more information, even after three days from viewing it. Text-only information only has a recall rate of 10%.
How to Create GIFs and Memes
There are many websites where you can create these graphics.
For GIFs, I recommend and use GIPHY. It’s pretty simple, you just need to upload your video, add a caption or any other fun decorations, like effects or stickers, and you’re done. If you don’t want to use your own videos, you can upload videos from YouTube. You can also create GIFs out of still images. Follow the instructions here.
For memes, there are multiple meme-generating websites to choose from:
Many of these sites allow you to choose from popular images and you just add your own captions. If you’re the creative type and enjoy graphic design, you can make your own in Canva, PicMonkey, or Photoshop. Keep in mind that memes can be made from still images as well as videos.
Tips for Using GIFs and Memes
Once you get the hang of it, creating GIFs and memes can become addicting. But there are some things to keep in mind once your creative juices are flowing:
- “A GIF will not play until it’s fully loaded. Loading time will depend on file size, so make sure each GIF is under 125 KB.”
- Be mindful of the humor you are using. Not everyone will find funny what you find funny. Keep your brand and reputation in mind and maintain your values and avoid offending people.
- Do your research and find out what is popular among your audience and commonly accepted.
- Keep it simple. Many websites, like GIPHY, have templates that you can repurpose and modify to fit your needs.
- Pay attention to upcoming events and holidays, and then incorporate them into your visual graphics
- This type of content is supposed to evoke emotions so create and use GIFs and memes that resonate and speak to your candidates and engage them. But make sure they fit with your message and content.
- Don’t be afraid to be bold, authentic, and creative.