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Emojis and Emotions in 2021

Emojis are a huge part of our everyday lives. From a playful way to expressing ourselves to a huge part of how we communicate online. We looked at some reasons why marketers should be upping their emoji game within brand communications and how this could help build closer relations with their audiences.


Emojis are an excellent way to measure brand sentiment on social media. Consumers often use them to express emotion, and brands and businesses can use them to help gauge how their audience feels about specific topics.


To make up for the lack of face to face communication throughout the pandemic, people took to digital platforms to express themselves, share how they're feeling and connect to others.

This increased digital consumption has helped to fuel emoji use and reliability. Marketers should be mindful of this shift and pivot their messaging accordingly.


Emotive marketing is proven to be an influential factor in driving an audience's purchasing decisions. Therefore the ability to gauge sentiment from emojis and emotional language is a big plus for every marketer as they can tailor campaigns to their consumer's reactions.

The figure below shows the percentage change in the use of these emotions between 2019 and 2020.

The usage of emojis between genders is pretty similar, with the crying face and crying with laughter face coming out in the top 2 for both genders.

2020 introduced a few new emojis, some of which have quickly become very popular. These include the transgender flag along with the 'Italian hand emoji'. Recently introduced was an interracial handshake emoji. These show that inclusivity in 2020 was on the rise.

A recent study showed that 66.7% of people felt represented by the current emojis. This is an improvement from a few years ago, however, we still have a long way to go until we can reach complete inclusivity.

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