Using Emojis to Stand Out in Your Customer’s Email Inbox = 💯🔥

by May 22, 2019Blog, Email

Although emojis (like ✉️ 😊 💙) are often used in text threads and social media posts, they’re less frequently used in email communication. This presents an opportunity for marketers to leverage emojis to help drive increases in email open and conversion rates.

Email marketing is an effective way to connect and engage with customers. However, our customers’ email inboxes are crowded with limited real estate available.

Here at 30 Lines, we’ve seen emojis paired with a well-written subject line perform 20% better than subject lines without.

That means customers are more likely to notice and open an email that uses an emoji is the subject line.

Did we also mention emojis require no additional cost, and they’re incredibly easy to implement?

Why you should use emojis in your email subject lines

Think about your email inbox. What inspires you to take action and engage with an email?

An impactful email campaign starts with a subject line that cuts through the clutter and grabs the attention of your customers. That’s why it’s critical to keep your audience in mind when you’re crafting subject lines. It’s also a best practice to test keywords and phrases to see what resonates the most.  

As previously mentioned, we see subject lines with emojis perform 20% better than without an emoji present. Here are a few reasons we think adding emojis could generate similar results with your subscribers:

Allows your brand to stand out and get noticed.
Email inboxes are busy places. On average, office workers receive at least 200 messages a day and spend about two-and-a-half hours reading and replying to emails, according to Forbes. Consider how an emoji catches your eye when skimming your inbox.

Adds emotion to your marketing message.
Emojis can make your brand feel more human. Use the right emoji and your brand message can feel more funny, playful, warm, or even personal. Researchers uncovered that emoticons, specifically when used in conjunction with a written message, can help to increase the “intensity” of a message’s intended meaning (Psychologist World).

Use fewer words and get the same message across.
Less is more, and emojis can help you simplify your marketing message. This approach is especially effective for mobile viewing, where subject lines are often cut off. Consider that more than 900 million emojis are sent every day without text on Facebook Messenger (Emojipedia). There’s a pretty good chance your audience is already using emojis in their own messages to efficiently communicate and elicit feelings.

Examples of emojis used in email subject lines

Email marketers are finding ways to creatively use emojis in their subject lines. But keep in mind, the use of emojis doesn’t have to be limited to the subject line. You can incorporate them into your preview text as well.

Let’s take a look at some examples from Bob Evans Restaurants. Email marketing continually ranks as their top performing marketing channel.

Here’s a full version of a campaign where an emoji appears in the subject line:


You can also see below how emojis are visible in subject lines on a mobile device.



Points to keep in mind when using emojis in email subject lines

Eager to use emojis in your next email campaign?

Using emojis can be as simple as copying the image from a resource, like Emojipedia, and pasting it into the subject line field of your email campaign. If you’re using an email system to design your campaign, like Mailchimp, they may offer a selection of emojis to choose from.

You can see in the image below, where the option to add emojis is accessible when creating a campaign in Mailchimp.

When using emojis in your subject line, also follow these steps.

Test your campaign before sending.
Whether you’re going with 🍔or 🏀, there are a lot of emoji options to choose from. But it’s important to note, not all emojis play well or are supported by certain mobile devices or inboxes. So before you push the campaign live to your audience, test it with different internet service providers.

If the platform or device doesn’t support an emoji, the recipient may see a character instead. We recommend using to review if emojis are supported in Gmail. This often varies from the image you see displayed in a text message on your iPhone.

Use a combination of words and emojis.
Make sure the emojis you use help contextualize the message you’re trying to get across. For example, the subject line “The Weather’s Great ☀️Bring the Farm With You ” pairs relevant messaging with the appropriate emoji to drive home the feeling.

Make your case for using (or not using) emojis

We see email as one of the most effective ways to add touch points and engage shoppers throughout the customer lifecycle. Emojis have added a boost to that performance, and we’re able to back that insight with data.

If you’re considering adding emojis, we recommend running A/B Testing on your campaigns. A/B Testing reveals how small differences in your campaign impact performance. To effectively run an A/B test, you’ll want to create multiple versions of your campaign that are the same in every way except the subject line. Email systems, like Mailchimp, can be a big help in managing A/B Testing.

When running an A/B Testing campaign in Mailchimp, the system will send each campaign to randomly selected parts of your subscriber list. It then sends the version of the campaign that performs best to the remainder of your subscribers. That way, you can easily see which subject line appeals most to your contacts (and have the data to prove it).

Ready to get started? Let us know if you’d like some help along the way.

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