Should You Use Emojis In SMS Marketing?

using emojis in sms marketing

Learn more about how to use emojis in SMS marketing.

Let’s be honest, emojis make boring text messages fun. They enhance messages by relaying different emotions – happy, sad, angry, laugh-cry, kiss, etc.

What is more, they add color to the otherwise black and white text message. In short, emojis add personality, humor, energy, and emotion to your text messages.

Not just that, they can make a huge difference to the success of your marketing campaigns.

  • Having emojis in SMS boosts engagement
  • Social media posts with emoticons have a 57% higher like rate
  • Emojis help improve customer retention rate by 20%
  • 72% of consumers feel positive about brands that use emoticons

Emojis can be highly effective in your SMS marketing campaigns. But if not used appropriately, they can backfire. There are a lot of factors that one must consider when using emojis in marketing campaigns. Let’s find out what are emojis, what is emoji marketing, what are its benefits, and what’s the best way to go about emoji SMS marketing.

What are emojis and what is emoji marketing?

What are emojis?

Most often seen as yellow circles, emojis are visual/ graphic representations of emotions. Commonly called as smileys, these are pictograms that are inserted in between text. Emojis help portray sentiments and add meaning to text.

What is emoji marketing?

Brands use different kinds of communication channels such as email, WhatsApp, social media, and SMS among others. Emoji marketing is the use of emojis to enhance the marketing message. Emojis are used in different forms of communications, including SMS.

An example:

Benefits of using emojis in SMS marketing

Higher customer engagement

Emojis add emotions to text messages. This tends to make the communication clearer and genuine. When communication is clear and honest, it attracts customers’ attention and increases engagement rates.

Adds a human touch to the message

SMS messages are meant to be short. They have word limits and hence, one cannot write long sentences. This makes it difficult to add any kind of emotion or sentiment through words. That’s where the power of emojis comes in. Emojis are the best way to express sentiments in text.

Why so? Psychologist Owen Churches studied the effects of emojis on humans and found that over time, the human brain has become accustomed to perceiving emojis as symbols of emotions. Emoticons have the same effect on our brain that we feel when we see a real human face.

Emojis help punctuate text

Text messages can come across as boring and unattractive. You can solve this drawback by adding an emoji in between the text. Not only will it give a break to the text, it will also add a blip of color to the black and white text.

They help make messages clear

In a plain text message, the meaning can easily get lost. For example, if you’re sending a marketing SMS to announce a sale, it’s difficult to express excitement due to the word limitations. Emojis help add facial expressions and gestures that we humans are used to during communication.

Emojis help strengthen business-customer relationships

Emoticons help give a friendly tone to text messages. They help make the text message more conversational, fun, casual, and engaging. These attributes go a long way in building and strengthening relationships with customers.

Drawbacks of using emojis in SMS marketing campaigns

It can backfire if you overdo it

Yes, customers like emojis, but an emoji overdose can have the opposite effect. Your main message could get lost in emojis. Moreover, if the emoji used is not correct, it might lead to wrong communication. Not all customers like emojis. And so, it’s best to use them sparingly and avoid overdoing it.

New emojis might confuse customers

Among the most common emojis are smile, grin, kiss, wink, etc. These emojis are easily understood by everyone. But if you use uncommon emoticons, it may leave your customers confused. Moreover, emojis can mean different things to different people in different contexts. Hence, it is better to avoid using uncommon emojis.

Best practices and tips for emoji SMS marketing

Use the most popular emojis

There are hundreds of emoticons. But there are few that are most common and everyone knows. When you’re using emojis in business SMS marketing, it’s best to stick to the known, tried and tested. Some of the most common emojis used by businesses are smile, sad face, heart, wink, laugh, and grin. Using the most common emojis ensures your messages are clearly understood by customers.

Make emojis relevant

Emojis might have a lot of benefits and advantages, but that doesn’t mean you definitely have to use them even if they’re not required. If an emoji doesn’t fit into your campaign, don’t force it. For example, at times, you might just be sending out an information text message that doesn’t require you to use even the simplest of all emojis – the smiley. It’s best to keep emojis out at times.

Use emojis creatively

To make your brand stand out in emoji marketing, get creative. You can use different types of emojis that are relevant to your brand. For example, if you’re a brand that sells clothes, using emojis that represent clothes or fashion will most probably not be misinterpreted by your customers. This is what we mean by keeping emojis relevant. Apart from that, you can even create your own emoji.

Here’s an example of how DunkinDonuts created their own emoji.

Start slow

If you’re a brand that’s new to emoji marketing, start slow. If you want to incorporate emojis in your SMS marketing campaigns, avoid using too many emojis in every message. This can put off customers and make them unsubscribe to your list. Instead, make sure you keep emojis relevant and use them sparingly only in messages that require them.

Moreover, when you start emoji marketing, you should monitor them carefully. Make note of whether or not customers are engaging and responding, which emoji messages got the most engagement, or whether customers unsubscribed. By monitoring these, you can get a better sense of how to build better emoji marketing campaigns.

Use emojis based on your target audience

While many different studies show that more than 70% of consumers like brands that use emojis in their communication, there are consumers who feel differently. When using emojis in your SMS marketing campaigns, it is extremely important to consider who you’re sending it to.

Mirror your customers

Mirroring your customers is important when you use a two-way SMS communication strategy. This means when you enable customers to respond to you and interact with you over SMS, notice how your customers respond.

For example, if you’ve sent an SMS with an emoji but the customer responded with plain text, tone down your use of emoji. Maybe the customer isn’t too much into emojis. Conversely, if the customer responds with an emoji, you can make use of the opportunity to engage the customer in a conversation and strengthen your brand relationship with them.

Should your brand use emojis in SMS marketing?

Emojis definitely enhance text messages, but whether you should use it or not, depends on many factors.

If your brand personality is young, vibrant, and conversational, emojis can work wonders for you, provided you use them intelligently. But if your brand is such that using emojis can put off your customers, or using emojis doesn’t make any positive difference to your campaigns, it’s best to keep them away.

Another important factor to consider when using emojis in your SMS marketing is knowing how to use it well and appropriately. Emojis cannot replace text completely. The best reason to use emojis is as a finishing touch and not to rely on them completely.

Emojis should be used on a case-to-case basis. Emojis should be relevant to each marketing campaign and have a context. Otherwise it might seem forced and confuse your customers. It is also important to do a bit of research to know the exact meaning of emojis and when one must use them.

To understand whether or not your audience will respond to emoji SMS marketing, there’s no better way than trying it out. You could make use of A/B testing when running an emoji marketing campaign. Try text messages with and without emojis and see which campaign receives more traction and engagement. Another way to use A/B testing is to use different emojis for different sets of customers and monitor the performance.

How are you ready to send your emoji SMS campaigns?

Emojis do have many advantages for brands and you must use them in your SMS marketing campaigns. However, you should follow the best practices and understand the right way to use them to make your campaigns a success.

The most important factor to run a successful SMS marketing campaign is to put in place the right SMS tool on your Shopify store. Are you looking for the right SMS tool for your marketing campaigns? You’re in luck with the TxtCart SMS marketing app.

Install TxtCart on your Shopify store today!

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