Do Emojis Belong in Content Marketing?

Do Emojis Belong in Content Marketing?

We’re up against fleeting attention and scrolling fingers daily. Learning how to pause and engage a reader is a recurring challenge for content marketing professionals.

We entice the senses with colorful infographics, movie-like video clips, magazine-quality photography and award-winning headlines. Now, we have another piece of content to add to our content marketing bag of tricks. Emojis. 

Sure, you’ve used the cute little graphics in social media posts and text messaging blasts, but do emojis do anything to increase engagement or readership? And do emojis belong in other content? Sure!

Tiny Visuals Make Us Take Action

I just finished reading an article about this topic from Daria Marmer, the Senior Social Product Manager at HubSpot. She and Chris Sabanty dug into the findings from the eight-page The Face of Online Information Processing: Effects of Emoticons on Impression Formation, Affect, and Cognition in Chat Transcripts study.

When it comes to emojis, it turns out those low-resolution icons are pretty powerful communicators. They help the content be more memorable (Hello, brand awareness) and feel more friendly than without emojis.

Here are a few stand-out stats from the article that made my brain light up. Emojis used in…
a tweet increased engagement by 25.4 percent.
a Facebook post increases likes by 57 percent and comments/shares by 33 percent.

I think that’s proof enough that we should start adding an emoji or two to our social media marketing content. But, what about emails and blog posts? Do emojis belong there too?

Where to Use Emojis Online

Everywhere! Well, almost anywhere. Our brains process visual information more efficiently than text, according to a guest post from Caleb Cousens from post on the Traffic Generation Cafe blog.

In the article, Cousens explains that 63 percent of social media is visual content and that when we look at a smiling emoji, we get the same feel-good moment as seeing a real smiling face. Cool.

Now, let’s go beyond your Twitter feed. Here are a few places where readers don’t mind seeing emojis pop up:

Email subject lines (to increase open rates by 20 percent)
Instagram hashtags
Blog post text (in lieu of boring bullet points)
Professional chat forums (think Slack)

After reading several articles on the topic of using emojis in content marketing, one rule holds fast: less is more. A pointing finger to direct someone to a link, using food icons to bullet point a list of restaurants or inserting a smiley that evokes emotion is perfect.

Posting 20 random emojis is visually confusing and passed over just as much as a wall of paragraph-less text. Don’t do that.

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