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Sam Williams
Sam Williams

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Want more claps and followers on Medium? Here’s how to design your own “follow me” GIF in 5 minutes

I read an article about how adding a GIF demonstrating how to like and subscribe massively increased reader action. When I first read it, I though that it was too hard to do, so I never tried it.

Well, I recently started using a screen recorder for making video tutorials, and wondered if I could also make a GIF.

It turned out to be a pretty simple task.

The first thing to do is to record the clapping and following actions. I work on Ubuntu and used Kazam for my screen recording. If you work on Linux then I suggest you do the same. It has a great ‘record an area’ function which is very useful.

sudo apt install kazam

When it’s finished installing, open it up. It has a very simple user interface and is even easier to use. To test it out, select “area” then it will prompt you to select an area. Highlight a random area and hit enter to confirm. Now you’re ready to record.

kazam screen reccorder

Hit the “capture” button and then the countdown will start. Move your mouse around in the area or click on something so the area changes. When you’re done, click on the recording icon at the top right of your screen and “stop recording”. Click back onto Kazam and you’ll be asked whether you want to edit or save. We’ll be saving our clips. You can then view it to check that everything is working.

Recording the Medium clap and follow

If you go into one of your own posts, you can’t clap or subscribe to yourself so we need to make a second account. Once logged into the second account, search for one of your articles and scroll to the “clap and subscribe” section.

Go back onto Kazam and select the area around the clap and subscribe. If it gives you a capture size of less than 1000x300 then zoom the browser. Having a higher resolution video means you can get a bigger gif, which is important since you can’t increase the size of medium images (or gifs).

capture screen

Now you need to follow the recording process again.

  • Start the recording.
  • Wait for the countdown.
  • Click the clap button then the subscribe button.
  • Save the recording.

If you want to re-record the video, you can unsubscribe and recall the claps (using the three dots on the right) and try again.

Video to GIF

There are loads of services online to convert videos to GIFs but I used EZ GIF. You can upload, trim and convert the video to a GIF really easily.

When you convert to GIF, make sure you choose a high resolution. I like “auto x 480" or “1200 x 300”.

Play your GIF

You now have your own GIF to add to the end of all of your posts.

Unfortunately there's no way to add GIFs on but that may be added in th future (nudge to developers).

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