Emoji Marketing: Add emotion to your marketing messages



Both big and small brands are experimenting with emoji marketing 🙌

Emojis are quickly changing the way we communicate and have become a steadfast part of modern language. Emojis are used by 92% of internet users and with new symbols constantly coming on-stream and their global use, some say it’s the fastest growing language in history.

Technology creators are developing features in an attempt to satisfy this growing demand. Google’s gboard now allows you to search for emojis by drawing them. While Samsung has launched an AR emoji feature on its latest phones. And new tools like Emojics even encourage user feedback through the simple click of an emoji. The popularity of emojis shows no signs of slowing down.

So let’s find out how you can use them in your marketing? 😎

Why emojis are great for your marketing messages

With their growing use and popularity, it makes sense for marketers to speak the same language as their audience. But let’s delve a bit deeper to explain why their use is growing so significantly.

Humans are visual creatures and our brains easily understand images. Studies suggest that people remember 10% of what they hear, 20% of what they read, but 80% of what they see. So the more visual your marketing message can be, the more likely it is to have a lasting impact that can benefit your brand. Emojis are an easy non-verbal cue to include in your messaging.

Communication should always be straightforward. We’ve previously posted about how the key to engaging social media posts is cognitive fluency This is about how people prefer things that are easy to understand, while they avoid information that is difficult to digest. So the easier your messages are to comprehend, the more people will listen.

This goes well beyond just social media posts, the same is true for all communications – the blog posts you publish, the emails you compose and the links you share. It affects everything we do. That’s why messages written in a standard font always receive more engagement.

A lot of this relates to our finite attention spans that seem to get shorter with each new study that’s released. The key to marketing in the modern age is to communicate your message in a quick and easy to understand way. Emoji marketing is ideal for this – and as they can often be used in an entertaining way, they manage to cut past our limited concentration.


Emojis are attention-grabbing and communicate a ton of meaning and emotion with just one symbol that can be understood in a fraction of the time it would take to read a sentence.

One study by the International Communication Association looked at the effect that emojis have on information processing. The study looked at the differing responses to the chatroom contributions of experts (a film critic and a doctor) when they used and omitted emojis.

It turned out that the presence of emojis affects cognition and attention. Chatroom users had a significantly better memory of chat conversations which included emojis. Regarding first impressions, users also considered the two experts more friendly and competent when they used emojis.

For brands using emojis, their use in conversations can reveal brand sentiment and build awareness of its product offering. But most importantly, emoji marketing can express emotion to their audience in a fun way.



Clever and creative use of emoji marketing can really leave a lasting impression on consumers and communicate your brand personality in a memorable way.

How to know if emoji marketing is right for your brand?

Emojis are on the rise but, you may be asking yourself, is it okay to use them in a professional capacity? 👀 Absolutely, yes! 👍

The study mentioned above, which looked at the impact of emojis in chatroom conversations, intentionally used two experts from industries with different levels of seriousness – a doctor specializing in nutrition and a film critic. But as it turned out, chatroom users felt particularly positive toward the doctor when she included emojis in her conversation, both in terms of how friendly and competent she was.

While not every situation is ideal for emoji use, when used in the right context, they won’t affect how professional you or your brand appear.


Emojis have leaked into workplace communications and are a key part of the rapid messaging that takes place in apps like Slack. One survey found that 76% of the 1,000 American workers used emojis in their professional digital communication. While a 2016 study by marketing automation tool, Appboy, looking at over 9,000 marketing campaigns found that emoji usage in marketing messages had rapidly increased at an annual growth rate of over 775% since 2013.

However, you do need to consider if using emojis is right for your brand and your audience. While most millennials prefer to express emotion through the use of emojis, only 37% of people over 65 feel this way.

So if you’re targeting a young demographic and have a fun or quirky brand, then emoji marketing is an obvious way to boost engagement. However, if your messages target older people or deal with very serious topics, perhaps they won’t portray the right tone for your brand.

How to use emojis in your marketing strategy

With just one small symbol, an emojis can communicate a lot. They let people know if you’re joking and can add passion to an otherwise neutral statement. They are ideal for communicating in situations where marketers need to keep things brief but want to convey emotion in their messages.

Emojis in links:

Rebrandly specializes in custom short links. For any marketers who want to add emotion, our tool lets them include emojis in links!

Our users can customize their short links in four ways – they can include their brand name, a meaningful TLD, a keyword of their choice and an emoji to express emotion.


Emojis bring a whole new level of meaning to the normally neutral URL – they can express emotion, communicate what your company does and catch people’s attention even in the busiest of newsfeeds.


While not all platforms are compatible with emoji URLs, they are ideal for adding an eye-catching CTA in WordPress, WhatsApp, Facebook and LinkedIn.

Social media:

On social media, it’s important to keep posts short – sometimes because you have to and sometimes because you don’t want your followers to scroll on by. But while keeping it brief, you want to stand out too.


Emojis are a great way to do this. Last year, the team at social media analytics tool, Quintly, analyzed 5.5 million Instagram posts. They found that posts with at least one emoji received an average of 47.7% more interactions.

emoji-marketing-social-media-example emoji-marketing-example-twitter

How not to use emojis in your marketing

Emojis are great for simplifying the meaning behind your marketing messages. But don’t get too carried away! It’s possible to go overboard with emoji marketing. For example, Chevrolet missed the mark when it published the below press release composed entirely of emojis. While the intention behind it was clever, the meaning of what the brand wanted to communicate was entirely lost.


Rather than making it easier for consumers to take the brand’s message on board, the emojis actually made this impossible.

Likely, in the context of a very serious or sensitive topic, it’s best to avoid the use of emojis. While they are accepted in a professional capacity, the colorful and fun symbols probably aren’t appropriate during a PR disaster.

During her presidential campaign, Hillary Clinton received a negative reaction when she shared the following tweet. People felt she trivialized a serious topic and treated it too lightly.


However, the emoji keyboard app which featured 30 Hillarymojis was a big hit with her young supporters.

As emojis become an integral part of how we communicate, emoji marketing will become an important part of how brands share their messages. While they are ideal for a wide range of use cases, they are particularly useful in situations where the length of your messages is limited. From standing out in newsfeeds and sending memorable SMS messages to putting eye-catching emojis in links, emojis make creating engaging marketing content a piece of 🍰


Some other brands using emojis:














Pizza Hut



Further Reading:

This Article is About:

  • Emoji marketing
  • Emojis in links
  • Big brands using emojis
  • Brands using emoji marketing

Photo in main image by rawpixel.com via Unsplash

Louisa works on putting together creative and useful content for Rebrandly customers to read. Though she spends a lot of time reading and writing online, she still loves to buy the Sunday papers.