So … It’s #NationalEmojiDay today – July 17th! How do you feel about those funny, colourful little characters? Do you use them? Do you find people who use them annoying? Are you an emoji addict? I think I am, but that’s another story …
I love a good emoji, but whenever I suggest to a small business that they should use emojis in their Facebook, Twitter and Instagram posts, they always look at me like I’m a little bit of an alien 👽. I really don’t know why seeing as we live in such a visual word these days. People are more likely to interact with a picture / image or video than a written post, and that’s one reason why Instagram has grown from strength to strength, and also Snapchat, Instagram Stories, Facebook Live, etc. behind it.
What I’m trying to say here is, if you’re not using emojis on your business Facebook, Twitter and Instagram posts, you’re missing a trick.
Are You Using Emojis When You Promote Your Business?
Emojis are colourful and eye-catching. They are designed to be that way. I am currently working with an artist, and we have created the social media pages for his small business, and are in the midst of promoting them to grow the following. The owner of the page had never used emojis before I came along, and there were occasionally posts that didn’t receive any interactions whatsoever on his pages. Admittedly, this was as we were growing the page, so it was a little bit trial and error with the first few ‘likers’. What was shown, however, was that EVERY SINGLE status, post, and Tweet received more interactions when they also had emojis within them. I have found this even more so to be the case for the artist’s social pages because he’s an artist – a visual person. The stuff he creates is designed to be visual. Why wasn’t he using ‘visual aids’ – AKA emojis – in his posts before? 🎨
I’m not alone in my train of thought either, with the Emogi Research Team suggesting that marketing campaigns with or using emojis have increased over the last year or so by over 777%, and that’s a figure that goes up by about twenty percent every month.
92% of people use emojis every day.
92% of people use emojis every day. Over thirty percent of people use emojis regularly – multiple times per day. In social media campaigns, studies have shown that using an emoji or two will boost interactions too. It was close to 26% more engagement on Twitter when a Tweet contained emojis, and Instagram – the fastest growing and most-used social media platform – over fifty percent of posts contain at least one emoji.
The results were even more surprising on Facebook, with posts containing emojis enjoying over 33% more shares, 33% more comments, and also close to a 60% increase in likes.
In 2015, the Oxford dictionary chose “emoji” as their word of the year, and linguistic professors are proclaiming that emojis could just be the fastest growing language ever in human history. I’m inclined to agree with them, and when you take a peek at how many of these cute, colourful faces are on the various social media pages every day, I’m sure you can understand it too.
Why Should You Use Emojis in Your Small Business Social Media Strategy?
There are hundreds of reasons why emojis work, not just in a business promotion sense, but also in a real-world sense.
🔘 They stop posts and words from becoming misinterpreted. A cheeky little bit of sarcasm, when met by a winky or tongue-out face, is easily understood as ‘cheeky banter,’ and you immediately know when something is funny when you see that common laughing-crying face 😂.
🔘 Emojis are eye-catching. They are much more colourful than black words on a white page, and they help to inject something else into the mix – thought, emotions, feelings, perhaps?
🔘 They can portray information to the reader when that reader may not have the time to check out the words you have written. An angry face 😡 indicates an angry status, a happy face 😄 indicates a happy status, a red heart ❤️ indicates a feeling of love or adoration, the list goes on. A picture tells a thousand words, after all.
🔘 Emojis can be used to shorten your posts, without resorting to using slang. You can use emojis in the place of words, still allowing the post to be easily understood. In 2016, Chevy released not only an entire ad campaign but also a press release, made entirely of emojis. Sadly, it was a tad too complicated for most people to understand, teaching us a valuable lesson – there is such a thing as TOO MANY emojis! > Despite being quite confusing and difficult to understand because of the vast amount of emojis used, it still increased engagement across the board on Chevrolet’s social media channels. Twitter received 18 times more engagement than they had previously for the company, but on some social media platforms, despite being viewed and liked a lot of times, the dislikes were even more prominent. The campaign actually received close to five times as many dislikes as it did likes.
🔘 Using emojis adds a touch of the ‘human-factor’ to your businesses social media page. People love it when you do this, for the most part, and they feel like it brings them closer. It makes the page more relatable, and people are going to be more likely to not only connect with whatever it is you’re saying but also interact with it. They are going to hit that ‘like button, or that follow button, and if you’re really lucky they might even buy whatever service or product you’re buying.
Warnings When Using Emojis on Social Media
⚠️ Firstly, what you think that emoji might mean isn’t always what it will be interpreted as. Here’s a little warning before we continue – things are going to get a little non-professional …
🍑 This could mean that everything is peachy, but at the same time, it could also be interpreted as a butt. Or a peachy butt.
💦 This could be a leak, a squirt, or rain, but at the same time, it could also be interpreted as … well, something a little non-PG.
🍆 We all know what this one is – it’s an eggplant. It’s not just an eggplant though, is it? It’s something else entirely. Something phallic-shaped. We’ll leave it there …
Sadly, as funny as it might be, emojis are quite easily and often misinterpreted these days, and you will need to think ahead. If you’re using an eggplant emoji 🍆, could it possibly be misconstrued as something a little adult-themed? Get a second opinion when you use emojis for the first few times, and make sure you ALWAYS proofread your social media posts BEFORE they go public. With platforms such as Instagram and Facebook, you have an edit function. Twitter doesn’t offer this so if you make a mistake, you’ll need to delete the entire post and start again.
⚠️ Only use emojis when and where they are deemed necessary. It is NOT necessary (or appropriate) to use a death emoji when you are an undertaker or working for a funeral parlour, for example 💀☠️. It would also look a little odd if you were an insurance broker or work in another very serious and sensible / straight-laced role, and then you started throwing tongue-out faces and winking faces in your statuses.
⚠️ If you’re struggling to work out whether or not emojis would be suitable and appropriate for your social media pages, I would also advise that you take a peek at other social media pages within the same industry as yours. Look at how they are marketing their business on social media. Are they using emojis? How are they using them? Do you agree with their strategy? How would you make it better? Once you start to critique other business social pages, you’ll start to get a great idea of how you could improve yours.
Emojis are fun. It’s perfectly okay to want to incorporate those fun tones into your businesses social media pages, and you should first consider using them as you would use them in text messages to family and friends. A laughing-crying emoji when something is really funny, perhaps? Have a look through them, see which ones you could use. It’s only when you have a quick look that you realise how many different emojis there are.
Make sure your message is very clear, and that it can’t be misinterpreted when you’re using emojis. Above all else make sure you proofread everything before you send it out into the world wide web.