Comedy Central?s Broad City fast-forwards audience engagement via GIF keyboard

In a reflection of the latest trend surrounding messaging platforms, Comedy Central?s Broad City is enabling viewers to download a mobile keyboard featuring GIFs of the show?s outgoing cast, driving excitement among audiences even after episodes air.

The Broad City keyboard campaign is powered by mobile messaging platform Snaps, which entered into a partnership with GIF aggregator site Giphy just last week. Snaps will allow its platform customers to continue long-lasting consumer engagement by adding GIFs into their keyboards, a new capability that will likely resonate with mobile savvy millennials.

?Broad City is a perfect candidate for a branded keyboard,? said Christian Brucculeri, CEO of Snaps. ?The show has a core audience of engaged fans and perfect content to use in mobile messaging ? it's timely, funny, and infinitely shareable.

?In addition, Comedy Central has had tremendous success in the past with its keyboard because it?s one of the most innovative companies in the market in terms of social strategy. It has seen millions of shares in messaging, and its strategy of updating content every week around new episodes helps drive even more engagement.?

Going wild for GIFs
Fans who download the Broad City keyboard will now be able to send friends various GIFs delineating the show?s funniest and most quotable moments. 

The Snaps-Giphy partnership enables the former?s partners to add GIFs from Giphy directly into their branded keyboards, so that consumers will not have to exit out of a messaging app to locate a GIF they want to include in their text.

Investing in emoji and GIF keyboards is a smart move for any television program with a mostly millennial audience, as Broad City has. 

Younger consumers prefer to communicate via stickers, images and videos when talking to their friends over text or on social media platforms these days, a trend that has fueled many marketers to pivot their advertising strategies accordingly.

Snaps? platform partners will also be able to implement other standard features into their keyboards, including videos and emojis. The messaging service has previously powered keyboard campaigns for brands such as Dove, Pepsi, Victoria?s Secret and Burger King.

Giphy has also been extending its brand outreach in a major way.

Domino?s Pizza UK recently rolled out new digital advertising initiatives with a slew of mobile-first components, including a branded channel on Giphy and sponsored Snapchat lenses that play into the campaign?s mind-boggling theme (see story).

The repository site lets users browse hundreds of submitted GIFs and share them with friends via social media networks.

The new normal
The one consumer behavior on which all marketers can bank is a growing reliance on mobile messaging platforms, such as Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp, that allow users to chat free of charge, regardless of their location.

Rolling out branded content to suit these platforms is a must-have strategy for any national brand. A slew of GIF-related campaigns have already been making their way to consumers? smartphones as marketers get more creative in their audience-targeting efforts.

In a move to meet millennials on their own ground, Coca-Cola is offering a way to share an animated GIF that expresses a consumer?s feelings in that moment as part of the new Taste the Feeling campaign (see story).

Meanwhile, PepsiCo?s Mountain Dew hopes to build excitement for the launch of Mtn Dew Black Label with a GIF keyboard for mobile users, playing into the popularity of emojis and GIFs among younger consumers (see story).

?Increasingly, young audiences have opted to spend their time communicating with their friends in mobile messaging apps,? Mr. Brucculeri said. ?Our partners have seen users engage in keyboards 180 times per day for over 30 seconds per session.

?If you think about consumers spending 90-plus minutes per day on their keyboards, what brand wouldn't want to be a part of that time??