According to Activate, Inc. mobile messaging has been the fastest growing online activity within social media over the last 5 years, emoji has become central to the way marketers engage with millennials and consumers via mobile devices.
Aware that traditional forms of engagement like banners and interstitials are nowhere as effective in reaching millennials, Brands are consistently innovating to gain the trust and capture the minds of this new audience. The use of branded emoji’s has allowed brands to unassumingly slip themselves into consumers’ every-day lives without appearing like ads, a win-win for marketers, as having your brand at the centre of a conversation without it being an obvious hard sell is the most effective way to have people talking about the brand.
So what does the future hold? How can marketers keep capitalising on new mediums of engagement that are exciting for this emerging consumer group? The fast approaching future will be a major turning point, there will be plenty more ways for brands to engage young consumers and millennials with branded content that allows the consumers to personalise their interactions within the mobile sphere. We’re already seeing this trend taking place when last year Skype introduced Mojis, which lets users share short clips from TV shows and movies in their chats. Photo editing app, PicsArt also lets users style their photos with branded frames and emoji.
The market is evolving in a way that allows brands and marketers to define the scope of success, to determine which audiences they want to engage, how long they want a campaign to run for, and understand the real benchmark for success.
Things such as official brand accounts in mobile messaging apps are already presenting another opportunity for brands to reach their audience at a scale- in a way that is entirely voluntary to the consumer. These accounts are able to engage with the consumers that want to communicate with them on a one-to-one basis and drive continued interactions by offering competitions, coupons, and loads of extra content. Let’s say a popular shoe manufacturer is launching its latest shoe for the hard-core fanatics, they can use branded accounts to promote the release date, images, and other incentives such as exclusive offers, and coupons which fans can purchase at the different retailers.
We know that the growth of mobile messaging and other apps are ever-increasing, taking over more popular desktop methods of communication. It is now known that millennial consumers love to personalise their conversation with engaging branded content, and marketers are seeing very positive early returns in using these methods of engagement. The crucial thing here is that these new ways of communicating with consumers don’t lose the genuine feel that has made them so successful.