Emoji marketing is an interesting construct of the modern world. Emojis are considered to be some sort of lingua franca due to their universality. Having evolved from the somewhat primitive emoticons in the 90’s, emojis have now found their home on numerous tech devices and platforms.
The allure of emojis is quite simple. They offer a visual mode for people to communicate their emotional state of mind. Simple words like “I understand” can be interpreted in so many ways. However, once you add a 😊, the context becomes positive.
Interestingly, it is in Japan where the emoji culture was born. Shigetaka Kurita came up with the first set of emojis in 1999.
[Tweet “Shigetaka Kurita came up with the first set of emojis in 1999.”]
Marketers around the world took notice of the trend once millennials adapted emojis in their conversations. Today, emoji marketing is a concept that has enabled various brands to creatively stand out from the crowd. Impressively, mobile push notifications containing emojis have an enhanced 85% open rate.
As a marketer, you can employ emoji marketing to connect with consumers on a personal level. To ensure that your messages resonate with your target audience, you need to keep things simple. It would be counterproductive to formulate lengthy messages since emojis were conceptualized to reduce read time.
In today’s discussion, we’ll be highlighting some of the top emoji marketing campaigns by top brands around the world.
It’s hard to talk about successes in the emoji marketing world without thinking about Deadpool’s smooth execution, also my favourite film. When the long-awaited film starring Ryan Reynolds was about to drop, members of the production team decided to try something new. The idea jumped from a WhatsApp group discussion to the billboards moments later.
The emoji marketing ad campaign received rave reviews from critics. AdWeek went on record to say that the execution was pure genius. In no time, the ad went viral even before the film opened in theatres.
The popular pizza establishment came up with a brilliant emoji marketing idea. The feat was recognized at the Cannes Lions awards due to its creative concept.
Having noticed that many customers were interacting with them online, Dominos sought to offer a unique way to boost sales. With chatbots being all the rage when it comes to website interactivity, it was logical for them to leverage the feature.
Instead of following the typical process on pizza ordering, Dominos did their customers a solid. All one had to do to have their pizza delivered to them was send out a pizza emoji on social media platforms.
To complete the process, customers had to create a Domino account, select their desired pizza, then link their Twitter accounts.
3. Bud Light
During the American independence celebrations on July 4th, Bud Light’s creative juices were in full flow. To mark the occasion, they tweeted a representation of the American flag. The only difference was that instead of the normal star-spangled banner, their imagery was nothing but emojis.
In place of the white and red stripes was the emoji of American flags. Being a beer company, they filled in sections of the flag with a couple of beer emojis. Overall, the tweet impressively garnered a couple hundred thousand retweets.
4. McDonald’s Emoji Marketing
The fast food establishment loves to appeal to the taste buds of its loyal fan base. In good taste, they came up with a great “feel-good” concept. Their emoji marketing campaign showed a couple of mean and determined emojis plus a twist right at the end.
A McDonald emoji showing French fries seemed to change the mood of the next emoji to a happy one. This short and succinct approach was quite effective in associating McDonald meals with positivity and happy meals.
5. Norwegian Air Shuttle
URL customization has been helpful in the marketing world. However, what many people don’t know is that the URL section of a webpage can actually consist of emojis. Countries like Western Samoa (.ws) and Tokelau (.tk) support non-Latin characters to constitute their URLs. In doing so, they support businesses to max out on their creativity by using emojis.
The Norwegian air shuttle came up with an interesting URL depiction of their flights from Copenhagen to Las Vegas. The URL featured a plane emoji, a lucky 7 slot emoji and the money with wings emoji. The post generated plenty of hits and about half a million people were reached by the campaign.
Proud of their effort, the Norwegian air shuttles marketing spokesperson opined that emojis had given them a brilliant way to capture the imaginations of their customers. He further added emoji marketing allowed them to communicate whilst presenting the message in a humorous way.
6. World Wildlife Fund (WWF)
The #EndangeredEmoji campaign began as a novel idea by two London creatives, Joris Philippart and Jason Scott. Concerned about the dwindling endangered species on the planet, they partnered with WWF for the campaign.
The emoji marketing initiative features 17 animal emojis. Each emoji represents an animal that is threatened by extinction. Their tweet encouraged people to sign up and chip in with their contributions in a bid to help protect the animals. Individuals willing to get onboard the campaign need to pledge to contribute about 11 cents whenever they use any 17 emojis.