Emojis – the small, fun digital images used to electronically communicate ideas and emotions. You’ve undoubtedly used them in texts, on your personal Instagram, in Facebook messages, and more.
Emojis are a great way to add personality and flare to content. And they help clarify the emotional tone of an otherwise flat or ambiguous message. But are emojis appropriate to use in a business sense?
Many marketers would argue that yes, they totally are! And if you’ve been paying attention, you may have noticed emojis popping up in email subject lines and more and more on social media. Domino’s Pizza even came up with a marketing strategy that lets customers order a pizza by simply texting the restaurant a pizza emoji!
When using emojis for your business, however, you do need to be mindful of crossing the line between boosting engagement and conversion rates and “compromising your brand’s reputation,” says Metric Digital.
Being “cheesy” may work for a restaurant, but it won’t match every company’s image or voice.
The Right Way To Use Emojis In Your Business’ Marketing
Choose emojis that connect with your audience.
There are literally hundreds of emojis to choose from. Celebrities like Heidi Klum, Kim Kardashian West, and Justin Bieber even have their own line of emojis. But not every emoji is appropriate for your business or your audience. And you need to understand the full meaning behind each emoji you intend to use and ask yourself, “Does this emoji enhance my business’ message?”
As with any aspect of your marketing, your use of emojis should be strategic.
For example, a business targeting millennial consumers might add a simple smiley face to the end of an email subject line. And while that may be a fairly “safe” copywriting move, to capture the attention of a younger demographic, the company may actually want to push the boundaries a little more.
Companies should decide ahead of time which emojis are appropriate and relevant to their brand. Plus, they should decide how often they want to use emojis in their messages. Generally speaking, you shouldn’t use more than 1-3 emojis at a time. Anything more than that can “cheapen” your brand’s feel or be distracting.
That is unless you’re using emojis for a specific purpose, such as Bud Light with its Fourth of July tweet:
Make your ads appear more native with emojis.
Since people often use emojis in their everyday communication, including emojis in advertisements can make ads appear more natural and thus blend in more with social posts. This is especially true of ads appearing on Instagram, where most social posts are accompanied by at least one emoji.
Using emojis in advertisements can also enhance an audience’s emotional response to a particular message and increase engagement.
Split-test your marketing with and without emojis.
First off, don’t rush into including emojis in your marketing if it’s not something you’ve done in the past. Start introducing emojis gradually.
Then, when you use emojis in your email subject lines or in your social media posts, compare the open rates and engagement levels of your messages with emojis versus your messages without emojis.
Other things you should test are…
- Which emojis perform the best/worst
- What demographic within your target audience responds the best/worst to content containing emojis
- Which medium (subject line, social media post, description) results in the best/worst emoji performance.
Some types of businesses, like restaurants, present more emoji-friendly marketing opportunities, given their more easy-going vibe. Whereas other companies provide services that are more serious in nature and consequently may not see as much of a positive response from their emoji-usage.
What do you think about using emojis in your business’ marketing? Do you think it’s an effective strategy or would it be detrimental to your brand? Get in touch via social media and share your thoughts!