By Amanda Hayes, Managing Editor
Public relations is constantly shifting in order to keep up with the latest trends in social media and technology. Marketing strategists must constantly be on their toes to see what platforms the millennials are using, and then be able to use them for their own advantage. With social media websites, smartphones and endless information reaching the minds of the younger crowd, there is a simple solution that many marketing teams are switching to in their publicity, emojis. Emojis are ideograms used through text messages to describe an emotion or even to make a sentence. Since Unicode Consortium’s release of 2,384 new emojis early last year, marketers have realized that they need to be short and sweet with their target market. According to social media analytics from SocialBakers, six in 10 of the 500 most followed brands online used emojis in their tweets in the fourth quarter of 2015.
Brands such as Domino’s, Baskin-Robbins, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), and many more brands have seen wide success from emoji marketing. While Baskin-Robbins has used ice cream cone emojis in their tweets, Domino’s and PETA have gone steps further including a call-to-action through emojis. For example, Domino’s reduced their ordering time to five seconds by linking the pizza emoji to the food-ordering process.
PETA also utilized this strategy with the 2014 launch of the campaign “Beyond Words.” This appealed to pathos of their target market since their message truly is all about animal cruelty. The campaign asked people to text back with a heart emoji to show support of the brand and the campaign, which had extremely successful results.
Marketers can rejoice knowing that June 21 will be the launch of 71 new characters including a cowboy, bacon, disco dancing and many more. As many brands are starting to incorporate these emojis into their promotion, there now may be the image they had been searching for to reach their audience.
There are several reasons why this strategy of marketing has proven to be effective. With the constant outpour of information from brands across several platforms, getting the message out in a way that is simple and effective may make it stick out to the consumer. It is also important in today’s world to design everything “mobile first.” Since this is the most used platform, it makes sense to make sure it is included in a brand’s campaign. With the launch of 71 new emojis this week, it will be interesting to see where emoji marketing goes next and if these simple images will still leave long-lasting impressions on their target market.