Can Emojis Be Utilized in Business?


When sending an important message to someone, how do you convey how you are truly feeling?  Do you rely simply on the words that you write and hope that the reader can tell what you are feeling?  Do you add in a smiley face or some other emoji to help demonstrate what you mean?  Is it appropriate to use emoji’s in a business setting or should it just be relegated to your personal life?


Breaking Formality

Besides using email, telephone and direct mail, businesses are using social media and live chat these days to communicate with customers.  These platforms are more of an instant communication that is pushed by the internet to be transparent.  This push has caused businesses and consumers to communicate in a much more informal way.


With that being said, is an informal display of communication appropriate for each platform?  In most cases, yes.  Each medium of communication requires a different approach, but informal language and emojis are often acceptable displays of communication.


Emojis and Tone

Have you ever tried to carry a conversation with another on a social media platform and one of you misinterpreted the meaning behind what was said?  The missing tone of voice or facial expressions were not given as clues and things got a little heated?  It seems that Facebook has been the root of many heated family arguments.  Nonverbal clues play a huge role in how a person interprets what is being said.  Without them, it is very easy to misinterpret the meaning and things can go badly quickly.  This is where emojis come into play.  Emojis can add context and meaning that helps to ensure that the other person understands what is being said.



There are so many opinions, both in favor and not in favor, of using emojis for business purposes.  Those who are opposed to using emojis claim that they are childish and unprofessional.  The have no place in the business world.  While others believe that adding emojis add a personal tone and adds a positive emotional response in customers.


Studies have shown emojis to promote a positive feeling in customers, including promoting social power.  Maybe there is a link between someone using emojis and feeling powerful?  Or maybe, the link between a person using emojis  has to do with their age, gender, where they live and social class.  So it is safe to say that using emojis, to some extent, depends on where we fit into society.  With that being said, should you choose to use emojis in your business, first take a look at demographics of your customer base as well as the platform you are sending the message in.


First Contact

There are some guideline you should follow prior to using emojis in your communications.  And it’s safe to say that if you are ever in doubt about using emojis, don’t use them.

  • Email – whether a business contact or personal, steer clear of using emojis until you get to know that person a bit more.  If they are very professional, don’t use emojis.
  • Social Media and Instant Messaging – emojis are used liberally on this platform of communication where the rules are completely different.  It is safe to say that most users here will be using emojis so feel free to express yourself with most people!