PETA Launches Emoji Mobile Marketing Campaign To Increase Engagement

4 minute read

Upland Admin

PETA, a long-standing leader in mobile marketing, has just announced another innovative and compelling mobile campaign to increase customer engagement. In what is a first for the mobile marketing industry, PETA launches emoji mobile marketing campaign to increase engagement emoji

Cool, right? Here’s how it works:


To capture people’s attention, PETA’s campaign elegantly conceptualizes “Beyond Words.” In addition to aptly describing cruelty to animals of any kind, the phrase embodies why people use emoji to communicate via mobile.

Once captured, PETA wants to mobilize supporters of animal rights to take action. Using a variety of digital channels, PETA develops an engagement strategy designed to maintain interest, enthusiasm and participation.

Call To Action

PETA’s design team deserves a round of applause. Emojis create graphic images of ways that animals suffer cruelty. Emphatic while remaining understated, an iPhone text bubble asks people to text the Heart Emoji or keyword HEART to 73822. Below is one example:

Running the call to action through the standard evaluation methodology, the two biggest reasons for its effectiveness are clarity and the secret sauce. Thanks to the added text keyword, participating in this mobile campaign is straightforward for anybody – emoji savvy or not. Moreover, the CTA aligns perfectly with the campaign’s goal and PETA’s overall brand. It catches the eyes of supporters and spurs them to action. Here’s one more example of a CTA – this with a different emoji-fied image:

Why Emoji

Emoji have captured the attention of consumers and media everywhere. They have become part of the mobile experience, recognized by anyone who owns a cell phone and universally spoken by everyone under the age of 30.

Plus, the emoji character harnesses the concept of a picture being worth more than words for social action marketing. The emotional connection of supporting a cause like PETA’s by texting the word “HEART” might only be eclipsed by sending a character that encompasses everything the five-letter text represents.

The use of emoji is cool, timely and on brand. Dynamite mobile marketing.

Customer Experience

Those who text the keyword or emoji to 73822 opt in to receive PETA Mobile Alerts. They then receive a prompt to share the campaign video on Twitter:

After clicking the URL, supporters automatically access Twitter to retweet one of PETA’s posts:

Upon accepting, the tweet instantly posts to Twitter (those not logged in automatically receive a prompt to log in):

Additionally, all participants receive a pre-scheduled series of campaign-related messages.

All in all, an excellent use of cross-channel marketing by PETA to bring the campaign to life.

Media Coverage

A ton of media outlets have picked up this innovative mobile marketing campaign, including Time, Co.Create, Adweek, Dailymail, Mediabistro, DesignTAXI, Creativity Online, Complex, LBBOnline BestAdsOnTV, AdLand, Business Insider, TheDrum and many many more (please shoot us a note if you’d like to see the complete list).

In our opinion, this reception speaks to the creativity of PETA’s campaign and its ability to engage customers.

Takeaways For Brand Marketers

Several mobile marketing best practices emerge from PETA’s campaign. The two most important:

  1. Embrace mobile as a tool to create conversations. Unlike email, which is by and large an outbound marketing tool, mobile drives interactivity. To create authentic interaction, speak in the language of mobile and use technology relevant to modern consumers.
  2. Personalize content to increase customer engagement. Certainly, targeting data remains an important means to achieve that end. PETA shows, however, that personalization is also possible by aligning the campaign with modern technology, particularly as it relates to reaching a specific audience (in this case a younger demographic).

Big ups to PETA for creating a mobile job well done. To learn more about creating award-winning campaigns, schedule a quick demo with us!

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You can read more about the PETA Emoji campaign in the press release

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