No Fits-all Formula for Twitter’s Branded Emojis

No Fits-all Formula for Twitter’s Branded Emojis

Twitter emojis are making heads turn, quite literally. Although this latest Twitter tool hasn’t been here for long, it’s already being loved and adopted by the biggest of brands.

Pepsimoji by Pepsi is just one example of the massive scale at which big brands are embracing newer ways of engaging with an audience obsessed with gifs and emojis. According to Brad Jakeman, President of PepsiCo,  “If a picture is worth a thousand words, a picture with Pepsi stickers can really spark a conversation.” But before delving into the why and how of using branded emojis on Twitter, let’s talk a little bit about what they are.

Introducing Branded Emojis on Twitter

To give them a textbook definition – Emojis are those tiny graphics on a smartphone’s touchpad that we smartly substitute for feelings, expressions, and even words. Twitter was quick to observe a rise in the usage of emojis and tapped into this new trend. It came up with an ingenuine (and highly effective) way to help brands connect better with an audience that loves to interact through emojis. Using branded emojis on Twitter, businesses can:

  • Engage more effectively with millennials, an audience that is tech savvy and wants instant gratification.
  • Communicate with minimum words and maximum impact
  • Target, reach, and connect with people based on their passions and interests; an exercise that’s easier done than said by the means of emoji keyword targeting feature in Twitter ads.

Are Branded Twitter Emojis Right For You

A quick glance at the A/B test results run by Larry Kim, founder and CTO of WordStream, would make any marketer qualify twitter emojis for their next engagement strategy. But then, just any A/B test run for a completely different audience does not prove emojis to be that ultimate magic wand that transforms your marketing campaign. Before investing in this engagement strategy, you should clearly bifurcate the Do’s and Don’t’s, so as to steer clear of failures.

The DO’s

  • Use emojis that are easy to comprehend. Take a cue from the most famous emojis worldwide.
  • Be creative, but only just. Get your audience involved and really engaged with very thoughtful but simple emoji guess games and quizzes. Check out this amazing campaign by Tampico to see how they got their audience hooked.
  • Use copy that supports visuals. Simply assuming that ‘everyone’ understands emojis can render your marketing communication abstruse.

The Definite DON’Ts

  • It goes without saying that aligning your brand image with your marketing strategy is the key to long-term success. Your business shouldn’t have anything to do with emojis if they don’t match your brand image. That explains why Donald Trump, who targeted America’s youth, achieved moderate to great success with clever use of emojis, while for Hillary Clinton, they backfired epically.
  • Using emojis can be a tricky affair when dealing with an audience that does not want fluff or ambiguity while interacting with a brand. Avoid emojis if your target audience is business class and professionals.
  • Even with the ‘right’ audience, overusing or stuffing emojis isn’t going to give you that adrenaline shot of success. The #ChevyGoesEmoji is a classic example here.

Getting Started

While stats and stories tell tales about how emojis have helped brands drive engagement, they can’t establish if emoji marketing is meant for you. As a brand manager who has to prove ROI on his efforts, at the end of the day, it is important to answer the following to get a clear yes or no on branded Twitter emoji as an engagement strategy:

  1. What kind of a brand are you – fun, serious, cool, sophisticated, posh?
  2. Who is your campaign’s target audience – business people, professionals, students, politicians, teenagers, women, men, children etc.?
  3. What is the objective of your Twitter campaign – Creating awareness, generating demand for a product, or driving sales?
  4. How would you execute your campaign – Budgeting is crucial, and so is deciding on the channel of engagement. Will you be solely using Twitter or aligning it with your overall marketing strategy to reach a wider audience?

Now that you have a perspective on the branded twitter emojis, would you give it a try?

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