The emoji is everywhere today, and no one bats an eyelid anymore when they see one. The emoji has finally entered social media communication and even emails! Now, will marketing professionals not smell an opportunity to tap into the huge potential of the emoji? Indeed, they will, and have! Emoji marketing has now found a place on the marketing stage.
Wondering how brands have leveraged emoji marketing? All you need to do is look at how a well-known taco brand got people to sign up an online petition demanding a taco emoji! The petition met with massive success. Another case in point is the pizza emoji that people had to tweet to order a pizza. There are many more such examples of top brands using emojis in their campaigns so as to hold the attention of millenials. The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) started a campaign on Twitter to encourage wildlife enthusiasts and supporters to tweet emojis of animals that are endangered. This was a fundraising effort on Twitter and met with excellent response.
So, what are the golden rules of emoji marketing?
- Know thy audience: The first rule is to know your audience, which applies to all forms of marketing. It is the audience which determines which emoji you should be using, and how often, and how many. So, before getting started, assess your own brand image and target. If it is an older age bracket you are targeting, you may have to go slow on emojis or keep the tone cool and yet serious. If it is an irreverent audience, your approach can be less serious. No matter what your audience type is, using emojis in the right measure help to personalise and humanise your marketing or brand.
- Keep it simple: Ok, so you have aced the emoji grammar, and are ready to go! Don’t use a paragraph full of emojis because people won’t even try to decode them. It’s like using adjective and cliche-laden sentences in a piece of writing. Learn your lessons from a major auto brand which released a press release in emojis that people found tough to decode. Emojis are tools to convey a message in a simple non-fussy manner; don’t use them for the opposite impact.
- Make branded emojis: Many big brands are coming out with their emojis, from furniture firms to mint brands, soft drink companies and fast food firms. However, only emojis that get approval from UCC or unicode consortium can be made available for smartphone owners.
- All for consumer feedback: When you get users/consumers to offer their feedback in emojis, you can get a better sense of how they feel about a certain product or services than by words. This is because the emoji options are vast. Mot all consumers may be articulate in expressing how they feel in words— emojis are their magic wand! Emojis are in that sense great for user participation and engagement. As a brand, you get a mine of data as well.
- Emojis in push notifications: If your business is app-based, you can use emojis in your push notifications. Of course, use your discretion. Ideally, emojis work in food, travel or retail/luxury sector.
- Emojis in email marketing: You can use emojis in the subject line to good effect, and score high on open rates. However, do test mails before sending them out. Emojis in subject lines grab attention, of course, if used the right way.
Now that you know the kind of magic these tiny sweet, angry, sad, happy icons create, and how compelling they are to use, go ahead and emoji your way into your audience’s hearts!