The surprising power of subject line emojis 🤔

I’d heard it before: Emojis in email subject lines boost results. We didn’t believe it. Nobody in their right mind would be influenced by a little illustration unceremoniously plastered in the subject line of an email, right? Oh how wrong we were.

Despite the fact that, without a doubt, we thought emojis would have absolutely no impact on our email campaigns, we decided to give it a try.

Every month, we send a newsletter to our marketing prospects. It proves a round-up of all the latest content, along with any offers we’re running — It was the perfect candidate for our first experiment.

Test #1 — March Newsletter

Subject Line A: {{First Name}}, don’t miss this 😎🕴️
Subject Line B: {{First Name}}, don’t miss this!

Result:
The test went out to 25% of our prospect database, split evenly between the two subject lines. We had 9% more opens on the emoji subject line. Result. Despite the increase in opens, click data was largely the same – but at least we were getting in front of more eyes.

We decided to look at some other data points out of curiosity. One particular metric caught us completely off-guard. The emoji subject line had 50% fewer opt-outs. We’d halved unsubscribes! It must have been pure chance, surely.

We waited until April and tried again.

Test #2 — April Newsletter

Subject Line A: April update from Windsor Telecom🐰🌷
Subject Line B: April update from Windsor Telecom

Result:
We hit the same data the following month and were surprised to find that our previous results hadn’t been a fluke. Our open rate was 11% higher when we used emojis in the subject line. Better still, once again, opt-outs went down by 16%.

We’ve tested it time and time again since and, whilst open rates are often higher with emojis, the results were fairly inconsistent. However, whenever we inserted those little illustrated images into email subject lines, the outcome has always been the same: Fewer unsubscribes.

Does it impact the reader’s sub-conscious sentiment towards us as senders? Who knows. But you can’t beat the data!