Discord, one of the most popular brands among Gen Z, has just released The Emoji Effect – a study of 16,000 users worldwide to further understand the magic behind emojis and why they’re beloved by so many.
Among all of the interactions taking place on Discord, one of the most popular behaviors is the use of emojis. ✨Increasing “emoji power” is one of the most popular perks of Nitro 🚀, Discord’s paid subscription offering, which allows people to boost their emoji library (or create and upload their own custom emoji!) with every new community they join. Nitro offers users access to over 500 million custom emojis, and fun fact: they share over 455,000 emojis every minute –that’s over 7,600 emojis used every second. 🤯
With emojis being a universal language anyone can understand, Discord wanted to learn more about the larger role they play in finding friendships, boosting confidence, and connecting with communities (particularly among Gen Z).
To further understand the magic behind emojis, Discord surveyed 16,000 people around the world 🌎 to understand why they’re beloved by so many.
📊 Key insights from The Emoji Effect include:
Emojis are the Secret to Building Connection, Trust, and Togetherness Online. No matter who you’re speaking to, or where your conversation is taking place, emojis are the secret sauce to building connection, trust, and togetherness online – 63% of people surveyed say emojis help them connect with interest-based communities, while 73% feel emojis help bring people together.
Emojis also help strengthen connections and relationships with friends, family, significant others, love interests, classmates, and coworkers. Next time you’re talking to your mom 👩🏽, boss 👨🏿💻, or favorite Discord community member 🧑🤝🧑, consider throwing in a few emojis!
Younger Generations are Likely to Feel More Honest, Expressive, and Comfortable Using Emojis. Younger generations are often digital natives and for this reason, may have a better understanding of what emojis bring to a conversation. They can also help explain the proper use of even the most cryptic emojis. 🙃🤠
Globally, Gen Z (61%) and Millennials (68%) believe that texts with emojis allow them to be more honest compared to texts without them, and Gen Z (65%) and Millennials (69%) can communicate their feelings better through emojis than written messages.
Emojis are Taking Over Written Language. Emojis offer greater personal expression, sometimes even more than written or verbal words. While 57% of people say they can better express their personality through emojis than through words, 70% say emojis can help make messages clearer. 😎🤏😳🕶🤏
Emojis are More Powerful Than Likes. Sharing our thoughts, actions, and interests is a common aspect of online culture. However, with sharing often comes the desire for validation. And emojis may be the new, preferred way to co-sign virtually: 57% of people get a bigger confidence boost when receiving emojis than a Like on a photo, and 43% say emojis provide more validation than a text or verbal statement.
A boost in confidence can be a powerful feeling, and providing that feeling to another person may be as easy as sending an emoji. 😍🔥👑
Emojis Serve as Conduits to Communicating with Friends & Partners. With their ever-evolving definitions and fluid meanings, emojis allow people to adapt different tones and meanings in every conversation – 79% of those surveyed say the emojis they use differ depending on who they are talking to. While the majority of people switch up their emoji use, 44% have a set of go-to emojis they like to use. 🫂💬
Emojis are Key to Making Digital Communication More Human. With the rise of virtual communication, the nuances of in-person conversations are often lost, creating confusion and misunderstanding. Emojis are the missing link 🔗 to making digital communication more human. Over 67% of people believe they can let their guard down when they see others using emojis, and 63% believe compliments shared with an emoji feel more genuine.
Including an emoji in your next message can also help mimic in-person mannerisms: 7 out of 10 people feel that emojis help mimic in-person conversations in a virtual setting, a benefit that’s particularly important when building remote connections is increasingly common. 🤝
Emojis Help Show Us Who Our Real Friends Are. The jury’s out: the true test of finding your BFF is with emojis. Over 65% of people are inclined to agree you’ve reached true friendship status when you start using more emojis with someone. In addition to strengthening existing friendships, emojis also help build new friendships – 43% of people are more comfortable talking with people that use emojis. So break the ice with your new friends and send that emoji. 👉👈🧊🔨
Emojis Serve as Powerful Mood-Boosting Tools. Emojis have a positive effect on our emotional state, and 72% of people agree that receiving an emoji when they are feeling sad brings a simile to their faces. It’s no wonder that 40% also agree that emojis can make them feel more cared for than a hug.
While many of us use them when feeling happy, humorous, and excited, 56% say they’re likely to use emojis when trying to cut the tension in a conversation. So whenever you need to brighten 🌞 your spirit 👻 (or someone else’s), use an emoji!
Custom Emojis Build a More Expressive and Inclusive World Online. Custom emojis are the future and help unlock more personal feelings of connection and community. When asked about custom emojis, people agreed they allow for diversity and inclusivity (84%), the ability to be unique (83%), and self-expression (81%).
While the custom emojis seen on Discord have yet to infiltrate the universal language of standard emojis, the benefits and interest surrounding them indicate a growing desire for their use in the coming future – 76% of people say custom emojis are easier to use than even text! 🧑🎨📈🔮