In Get Emojinal! How to Connect with Buyers, social selling expert, Koka Sexton, shares tips on how to use emojis to build relationships. What has evolved into a language of its own, emojis bear an interesting resemblance to the symbols and hieroglyphics used in ancient communication. Have we come full circle?
The benefits of using emojis are pretty simple. They allow us to communicate faster and with more clarity. If you aren’t seeing emoji use increase in your daily communication, allow me to introduce some metrics into the mix:
Since 2015, there has been a 777% increase in the use of emojis by marketers.
Emojis have become a standard part of customer communication—but is it working? Seeing as 92% of online consumers use emojis and open rates increase by 45% when an emoji is used in an email subject line, one thing is certain: people are using emojis to connect and yes, it is working.
But are emojis a mainstay or simply part of evolving communication trends? Whether you use emojis in your professional communication (no judgement 🙂 – 76% of professionals use emojis at work), personal communication, both, or neither, there are some lessons we can glean from emoji use today. Here are the top five reasons why people use emojis and what it means for your business.
1) 70% Feel emojis help them more accurately express what they’re thinking
The fact that this is the number one reason why people use emojis is very telling: People value the truth. When you reach out to customers, keep it honest and accurate. Assess if the relationship is a good fit by sticking to the facts and focusing on solving the customer’s problem. A solution-oriented approach is a win-win. You’ll either end up with a closed deal or a new connection that could bring you referral business.
2) 65% Believe emojis make it easier for other people to understand them
The use of emojis to express thoughts as a way to connect and align just means we all want the same thing—to know the messages we communicate are not only being received, but understood as we intended. Apply this concept to develop better customer relationships. Acknowledge customer needs as they arise throughout the buying cycle. Don’t hesitate to ask for clarification. Most importantly, keep an open line of communication as you actively work to address their needs.
3) 49% Say emojis help create a more personal connection
We’re living in a highly automated world, but the best sales reps know how to work the right amount of personalization into their communication. While many are still blasting automated emails until someone bites, you’ll have a better chance of connecting if you can stand out and one way to do this is to appeal on a more personal level. Don’t be afraid to bring other topics into your conversation, so long as you do so seamlessly.
For example, if you’re talking to a customer that tells you they need to reschedule your meeting because they are going to be on vacation, remember to include that bit of personalization in your follow-up. It is the perfect segue into re-establishing communication when they return. Ask them about their trip and even share your own personal experience if you can relate.
4) 41% Agree that emojis are a better fit than words for the way they think
Have you ever sat there wondering how to phrase something? Maybe you’ve asked a friend to review something you’ve written? Well, these phrases might come to mind:
“Sometimes there just are no words.”
“A picture is worth a thousand words.”
These popular sayings are well-known for a reason. Sometimes it can be tough to sum up our thoughts and feelings into words, let alone doing it concisely and in a few sentences. We can get caught up inside our own head and wonder if the words we use to explain ourselves even make sense. Your buyers are no different than you or anyone else in this way. Sometimes an image, or emoji, is the best way to convey our thoughts and do so while making a deeper, emotional connection.
5) 41% Say they use emojis because it is faster
As sales reps are busy working their list of contacts, time is certainly on their mind. Well, it’s no different for anyone else in the world. Many feel like they are working against the clock, so who isn’t looking to save time?
With 41% of customers saying they use emojis to save time, this tells us that we should be helping them save time. If there are ways you can save customers or prospects time, consider taking those extra steps. The added value will certainly be appreciated. One way to do this is to include a scheduling feature in your signature like Calendly that eliminates the back and forth hassle that can come with setting up a meeting.
If the increase in emoji use by customers and businesses alike tells us anything it is that the way we communicate is evolving. But despite subtle differences in practice between our personal and professional lives, there is crossover in shared value that cannot be ignored.
About the Author: Jaime Lee is the content marketing manager at Velocify. She has 8+ years’ experience creating marketing communications strategies for every type of company imaginable, from non-profit startup to enterprise software. Jaime is a licensed real estate salesperson (DRE #01930210) and has a B.A. in Communication from the University of California, Santa Barbara.