Are you an iPhone user and recently updated to iOS 9’s? If so, you probably noticed the array of new emojis added to the scroll bar. With all the buzz of the update, one emoji in particular is getting lots of attention. An eye placed inside a bubble has users questioning Apple’s reasoning behind this unique emoji. Adobe, Ad Council and Goodby Silverstein & Partners joined Apple and created the emoji to promote an anti-bullying campaign called, “I Am A Witness.”
The goal of the campaign is a twist on the typical victim-based campaigns and target those who witness bullying instead. This team strategically chose to do the eye within the talking bubble to promote the idea that if someone witnesses bullying they should speak out.
This is the first time Apple has ever allowed a promotional emoji to be strategically placed in its emoji bar. Do you think that Apple will eventually allow companies to advertise through an emoji? If so, do you think this is strategic for companies to do so?
With just under 500 million people owning iPhones in the world, this may be a strategic way for advertisers to reach their target audiences more easily. This also encourages people to promote the company as well. Let’s take McDonalds for example. Say in the next update, individuals notice the iconic golden arches logo. One person is hungry, so he texts his friend the arches emoji with a question mark. The texting helps to promote the brand’s logo and embeds the iconic image even deeper into his friend’s mind.
I am curious to see if Apple allows this iPhone feature to be used as a potential marketing tool for other companies.