How To Use Emoji In Your Designs In a Professional Way

July 17th is World Emoji Day, the day when you can (and should) use emojis without any regrets. Every year, more and more companies use emojis not only in their conversations with customers but also in their marketing campaign, to explain user experience or features on the website, etc. In fact, using emoji is one of the most engaging tools in visual marketing.

This particular niche is called emoji marketing and it’s very much a thing. Check our post on emoji marketing and how it can be beneficial for your brand: 5 Things You Should Know About Emoji Marketing.

How can we, as designers, participate in emoji marketing? First off, we can make it easier for people, including other designers, to add emoji to their graphics and visual marketing tactics.

Emoji can be used in any type of design; social media graphics, print projects, websites, merchandising, physical products, and more. The best emoji-based designs are those that take on a timeless quality. You want your designs to be used all year and more in July. 

Today we’ll take a quick look at how you can take part in emoji madness while keeping it professional.

emoji day illustration

Create Emoji Based Designs

Our first suggestion is to create different types of graphics that include emoji in the design. These can be virtually about anything. If you are Freepik contributor, remember that you’ll need to create your own emoji from scratch. You can’t take someone else’s emoji designs and add them to your own. 

Thankfully, emoji have a standard look, you just have to give it your own personal twist. Make sure you keep them recognizable so they are still as fun as the ones everyone knows from messenger apps.

Let’s start with social media, the favorite emoji hangout.

Social Media Graphics

Since social media is where most emoji marketing happens, it’s a good idea to start there. Create social media template sets for all social media channels with the same design. Make social media banners and headers. 

Social media carousels are in high demand for Instagram and Linkedin. Create different sets using emoji as the visual attraction or as a supporting element. Play with different levels of emoji involvement. From prominent emoji that’s easily recognizable to emoji as sticker decorations that don’t overpower the design. 

social media

Blog Graphics

Bloggers are always looking for graphics to include in their blog posts. Create some blog banners and graphics that include emoji in the concept. Don’t just stick to smiles though, play around with all the other available emoji. Have fun without getting tacky.

For example, use thumbs up and thumbs down emojis in a comparison infographic template design. Make education-related PDFs for teachers that include emoji to make it more engaging. 


Try creating GIFs with emoji for a fun design.  Emoji based GIFs might be one of the most difficult designs to get right. It’s easy for them too look tacky or “too much.” It’ll take some practice to make an emoji GIF that really stands out, looks professional, and that people will want to use it. 

A good angle for a GIF emoji is to make them especially for a client that is looking at ways to refresh their visual marketing.

animated illustration

Mix Emoji With Photography

Adding emoji to a photograph is easy and adds just enough fun to an otherwise random photo. These composites are perfect for social media, blogs, and even websites. To make it look professional, use good quality emoji and a good looking photo. Make the composition as natural and fun as possible.


Design stickers with emoji and add a cute little message. Create these in sets for a better effect. Stickers are great because they can be used digitally or printed out. 

People can use them to stick on their laptops or add them to their Instagram Stories. They can be collected into sets and sold as printed sheets.  Trust us, emoji stickers always go down well. 

Create Emoji Icons

All the options above include emoji in the design. But what about creating stand-alone emoji? Flaticon is the perfect platform to upload your emoji icon creations. Create different styles, from the classic color and texture or thin line, grey-shaded, monochromatic styles. Check Flaticon’s latest freebie and get your hands on some quality emoji icon pack: Free Emojis Icon Pack to Download.

Create your emoji icons in style sets for other designers to find them easily. 

emoji icon pack

Your Emoji Design Style

Just as how you infuse your style in all your designs, do the same with your emoji designs. Try and find a way to make them special and interesting while also transmitting that fun feeling emoji are known for. 

As always, keep your designs balanced and with plenty of empty space. Get inspired but don’t copy other designs! You can’t get much more professional than that.