Using gifs to elevate marketing

5 Brands That Are Using GIFs to Elevate Their Email Marketing

As email marketers, we are constantly asking ourselves what makes an email great. Witty copy? Stunning design? Eye-catching imagery? Sure, all of these combine to create powerful email campaigns, but nailing those elements down to an exact formula across industries is impossible.

Universally, great email all boils down to one element: level of engagement. The goal of email marketing is to establish a business relationship with a prospect and eventually convert them into a customer, so catching and holding their attention is key.
While static emails are able to accomplish this through many means, the emergence of animated GIFs in email makes it clear that these animations can draw and focus attention on your product in an incredibly powerful way. These five brands have proven just how effective – and fun – GIFs can be in email.


Everyone’s favorite mobile streaming service did an incredible job with their marketing of the release of a new season of House of Cards. The GIF in this email does an incredible job of instilling intrigue – and fear – in subscribers by layering provocative copy over Frank Underwood’s ice-cold stare. Extra points should be awarded for the animation’s black and white color scheme, which allowed the Netflix logo and its CTAs to stand out.

Netflix Gif

Kate Spade

I’m consistently drawn to Kate Spade’s impeccable email marketing, with their mastery of GIFs as a huge reason to love their campaigns. The women’s accessory and clothing retailer primarily uses GIFs to demonstrate the multi-functionality of their products as well as different views of each look. This email quickly delivers the visual information that subscribers need before making an online purchase, all while allowing them to stay on the email instead of navigating away from your CTA. Added bonus for the fun copy and eye-catching tile design.

Kate Spade gif


Boden is another retailer that does an incredible job of centering their design on animated GIFS. In this email, the animation of the disappearing lemonade not only flawlessly ties into the copy of “squeeze the last few drops,” but also conveys the exact sense of urgency that Boden intends with this email about shopping their temporary sales.

Boden gif


In this email about an update to the Lyft app, the taxi alternative company expertly utilizes animation to demonstrate the simplicity of their new UI. With the hero copy reading “Getting around is now easier than ever,” the GIF delivers on this promise by demonstrating the simplicity of ordering a Lyft car through the application. This engaging GIF encourages the reader to go beyond the fold and explore the app’s new offerings.

Below is the animated image in the email. Click here to view the whole email.

Lyft gif

West Elm

I’ve highlighted West Elm before for their email prowess, but this recent send regarding their lighting sale earns the home décor company another mention. The otherwise simple email truly shines with the on/off animation of their lamps. With the animation casting a literal spotlight on their copy, this email truly shines.

West Elm gif

Test before you send!

How do these brands ensure that their GIFs are powerful across platforms and devices? By testing their emails, of course. Elevate your email marketing efforts by trying out Email on Acid’s free 7-day trial.

Author: Alex Ilhan

1 thought on “5 Brands That Are Using GIFs to Elevate Their Email Marketing”

  1. Great set of these, thanks Hannah – particularly like the way they all keep your attention with the different ‘moving parts’ (including Frank’s head/eyes & the text); for example, West Elm’s wouldn’t have been quite as effective if both lights had come on at the same time.

    PS I remember the Netflix one, sat watching it over and over countless time and still got freaked out by that look!

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