No words necessary

I truly never imagined the day would come when I would be writing about emojis, but it’s clear from the cultural trends underway that these little characters are here to stay.

Before we dive into what an emoji is and what they are used for I think it is important to take a moment and review how we got here.

Millennials are leading the charge in reshaping language to fit their preferred mediums of communication. It started with short text bursts limited to 140 characters to fit into a single SMS text message and eventually evolved into a new form of communication known as Twitter.

Next, our phones evolved beyond the limitation of sending a text message while receiving a major upgrade in the form of a decent camera. No longer was it necessary to describe what we were doing — it became so much easier to just show it. Instagram capitalized on this with the first truly successful mobile-photo-centric network. 

Now we have arrived at a new evolution: emoji. These little symbols can convey complex emotions and phrases in a single character that transcends language boundaries.

Since Instagram’s inception, users have sprinkled their posts with emojis. Now it is easier than ever to meaningfully incorporate our favorite little images. As a refresher, emojis are the popular ideograms or smileys used in text messages and social-media sites. These guys have the power to say a lot without saying anything at all. Some of the most common emojis include:

Not surprisingly, Instagram discovered that more than half of its users use emojis, making it imperative that these communication tools be integrated into search streams. According to Instagram, the most popular hashtagged emojis currently are:

For hotels, this means properties can use emojis to link their content with like content. Emojis can be used to populate your posts in relevant search streams to improve follower counts and engagement rates. While this might not seem like a groundbreaking update, remember, anything that enhances your content’s organic visibility is worthwhile.

Another reason for hotels to jump on the emoji train is that they transcend cultural and language barriers. These little images are an excellent way for properties to reach a diverse audience without getting lost in translation. Anyone can communicate an emotion and discover likeminded posts.

The real question is: Should YOUR hotel use emojis in its content? It all depends on the personality of your property. Trendy hotels with a youthful demographic will undoubtedly find it beneficial to speak the same language as their guests. For other brands that attract an older crowd, emojis should be used wisely, if at all. It’s about knowing your audience, and serving them messaging to which they can relate.

At the moment, hashtagging emojis are strictly an Instagram feature, so play around with them, and learn what works for your hotel.