Smart marketing has always been about reaching people ‘where they live’. If you wanted to target business travelers, you advertised on airport displays. For daily commuters it was outdoor billboards and radio. Today, everyone’s on a mobile device. As a result, every major brand has struggled with the challenge of making mobile advertising effective.
Enter the emjoji. Seems kind of odd doesn’t it? A minuscule graphic that people use to convey a simple emotion along with their text messages. But that’s the key. Everyone who has a smartphone sends texts. And according to Adweek, 92% of those same people use emojis. They send over six billion of them every day. That’s an open invitation for brands that can’t otherwise crack the mobile marketplace.
And here’s the kicker. Emojis communicate emotion. And for brands, making any kind of emotional connection is the holy grail. Here’s an interesting quote from HubSpot about emojis: ‘According to data from marketing agency Deep Focus, four out of every 10 millennials would rather engage with pictures than read. Yes, you read that right. Nearly half of history’s most educated generation would prefer to revert back to some sort of cave painting-esque proto-language than bother to parse through a couple of sentences.’
Even Facebook is strolling down emoji lane – with their new symbols that allow you express something other than the all too familiar thumbs-up icon.
According to Evan Wray of Swyft Media, ‘All of a sudden the brand is in this very personal conversation between friends and family.’ That’s a pretty valuable place to be. On top of that, emojis are recognized internationally – so there’s no language barrier as your marketing moves from one country to the next. Think your product isn’t right for an emoji? My guess is that’s what they thought at Durex, too. At least originally.
There’s even a new company (Emogi) that will analyze data on how people use your emojis to reveal their sentiments about your ads, or your brand. Here’s the reality right now: after years of paying for mobile advertising that almost everyone ignored, emojis are a big opportunity for brands. Which just goes to show that over 50 years ago, Volkswagen had it right when they told everyone to ‘Think small’.