Emojis don’t drive brand engagement

Emojis don’t drive brand engagement Colm is the editor of MarketingTech, with a mission to bring the most important developments in technology to both businesses and consumers.

The use of emojis has added a lot to text communication. We all know that when you receive a disco dancing emoji followed by three wine glasses in response to the question of whether your friend is still on for a few after work drinks, that the night could be about to spiral out of control.

While emojis are great for adding additional meaning onto messages sent to family and friends, they could actually be detrimental to a brands image.

New research by martech company Pure360 shows that many consumers in the UK not only think that brands shouldn’t use emojis, but that they might actually choose not to engage with them because of it.

The study is based off figures from YouGov, that asked 2,045 UK adults what they thought of brands attempts to mimic the kinds of conversations they have with their personal circle.

77% of respondents said that they use emojis in messages to their family and friends. Only 5%, however, said that they would be more likely to buy from a brand that uses them in their digital marketing.

39% thought that brands that use emojis appear less serious, and 29% think that their use actually devalues a brand.

Not helping engagement

Perhaps surprisingly, it is consumers aged 18-24 who are most opposed to brands using emojis. 36% of respondents in this age group thought that emoji use actively devalues a brand, compared to just over a quarter of those aged over 55.

The age group that cared least about emoji use by brands were those aged 25-34, with 48% saying that the use of emojis would not be likely to significantly influence their purchasing decisions.

However, just 7% of all respondents thought that emojis made a brand look more human.

“The arrival of the latest batch of emojis and their prevalent use by Brits in messages to friends and family will have heightened marketers’ curiosity as to whether they can help a brand better engage today’s UK consumer,” Komal Helyer, Marketing Director at Pure360, said.

“However, our research shows that the jury is still out on brands use emojis in their marketing efforts. As with any marketing mechanic, the use of emojis by a brand comes down to knowing the audience and understanding what they will react well to and react badly to, as a demographic.”   

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