Plain Talk About Marketing: Emojis in Email Marketing


Should you incorporate emojis in your email marketing?

By Jordan Nicholson

We all know and love the little icons on our keyboards called emojis. They’re easy to use in our own personal messages, but should you be considering them for your professional messages as well?

According to the 2022 U.S. Adobe Emoji Trend Report, 44% of users are more likely to purchase products advertised using emojis. Another study states the open rate of emails with emojis in the subject line is 56% higher compared to plain subject lines.

So, what do emojis in email marketing look like? Emojis can be used in the subject line or the title of your email to highlight important information, catch your audience’s attention when scrolling through their emails, or add on to information already stated. They can be a fun, expressive, and personable incorporation into your marketing.

Here are some best practices and what you might want to avoid if you are considering incorporating emojis into your email marketing.

Best Practices for Emojis in Email Marketing

emails in an iphone inbox screenshot showing emails using emojisThe first thing to consider is who is your target audience? A younger audience might respond well to the use of emojis and feel as though your brand/company is inviting toward younger generations. An older audience may respond well, but also may think emojis can be unprofessional and don’t belong in business messages.

Another thing to consider is emojis do not look the same across all devices, as Apple, Google, and Samsung emojis all look different. It’s best to do some research and make sure the emojis you use convey the same meaning across all devices.

A great example of this is a tweet from the loveable Sesame Street character Cookie Monster, who when celebrating National Cookie Day, used his favorite cookie emoji. The tweet was received well, but Samsung users were confused when all they saw were cracker emojis!

When it comes to people emojis, we applaud tech companies for their inclusion of an array of skin tones for all users. However, unless it makes sense for your company, it’s best to stick with the yellow skin tone across all platforms. Using the yellow color will avoid singling out one group of people and make all races feel included in your marketing.

What to Avoid

When it comes to emojis, it’s best to use them to accentuate something you have already stated in your message. A great example of this would be a backpack and crayons to highlight a back-to-school sale. Try not to use emojis to replace words, as it may confuse the real meaning of your message.

Make sure the emojis you are using are the right ones for the right meaning. Try to avoid any questionable emojis to keep everything friendly and professional. Having your emoji use come across the wrong way may be detrimental to your brand/company, so think carefully about your emoji choices.

If you’re wondering how emojis may appear questionable, across the internet it is popular to use emojis as another meaning than what the emoji clearly shows. One example of this is Gen Z likes to use skull emojis instead of the laughing emoji to show they find something funny. Another example is a variety of fruits and vegetables have taken on a whole other meaning than just delicious food! Visit this guide to view what emojis are supposed to mean, and what hidden meaning they might have associated with them due to the internet.

Keep your emoji use light and fun and try not to overuse emojis. Nobody wants to see a message with five to ten emojis tagged on at the end. Try using only a few to highlight your message, tag on at the end, or strategically place within your message. Short, sweet, and simple is the way to go to avoid overusing and confusing your audience.

Check out the great resources we used to research emojis in email marketing and consider implementing emojis in your own marketing or get curious and research further!

How to Use Emojis in Email to Boost Open and Click Rates

Emojis in email marketing: Hit or miss in 2023?

Plain Talk About Marketing- Using Emojis in Email Marketing Downloadable PDF