It’s rare that you can scroll down your Facebook timeline or Twitter feed without seeing a sponsored post or some kind of advertisement, but now brands are catching our eyes with the latest lovechild of video and picture – cinemagraphs. As more users recognize sponsored content and skip over it, these images (similar to a .gif file) help brands grab the viewers attention with subtle, repetitive movements that are somewhat mesmerizing.
This peaceful image of someone enjoying a latte and a newspaper was used by Armani Coffee to promote their coffee products. But at first glance, is this cinemagraph for coffee, glasses, or ballet? Don’t make your audience guess. While contrast is good and can work, have a clear intent so the content drives the user to the next action.
The cash counting machine from AMC’s Breaking Bad makes for an almost hypnotizing image. Using money as the focal point was a smart move, giving people a reason to pause and consider why a seemingly endless flow of cash is important to this series. The real best practice here is the branding on the bottom right. If people share on social, the branding will follow.
This cinemagraph by Coca-Cola was one of the most notable advertisements, receiving more than 80,000 notes on the company’s Tumblr account within the first two weeks it was posted. The warmth of the image allows Coke to market their beverages as cold and refreshing, and the vibrant red of the can pops against the contrasting blue backdrop. Unlike most cinemagraphs, Coca-Cola used the movement in the image, not in the focal point, but the background surrounding it. This helps the can to stand out against the water.
This image appears to be just a picture, but the simple water drop both in the background and the foreground make the graphic worth sharing. Gilt Taste’s focus was marketing fresh and healthy food, and with this cinemagraph, Ann Street Studio effectively showcases the benefit of grocery shopping with the online grocery service. The best practice? Sometimes simple is better.
This cinemagraph was created by photographer Gabi Moisa after a model had come out of hair and makeup for a photoshoot. The slow, deliberate motion of the model’s eyes is almost unexpected and it causes the viewer to stop and take a second look. The vibrant colors in the model’s eye shadow are the first thing you would notice about the image, but the slow movement allows the detail and beauty in it to be better displayed.
Created by our own Interactive Designer, Juan D. Bolaños captured a quick moment of his world at SmartAcre from an interesting perspective. Cinemagraphs are a great opportunity to provide the audience with a new perspective, inviting them to look at your brand or product in a new way. Plus, the content is branded, an important tip to remember when posting images or cinemagraphs to social media.
Thinking about incorporating a cinemagraph into your content strategy? Before starting, think about the purpose and the ultimate goal. Also, think about what content or images you already have that can be repurposed or amplified by a cinemagraph. Then, see what works!
When done correctly, cinemagraphs can help you catch the attention of your audience in a natural way, engage them through the element of surprise, and reinforce your brand through social sharing.
Have you created your own or seen any noteworthy cinemagraphs? If so, include your example in the comments.