Emoticons make their way into customer service :-)


One of the first things agents learn in customer service training is to say “My pleasure” instead of “No problem.” Contact centers spend countless hours training agents to communicate in a way that resonates with customers:

Be polite

Be kind

Be helpful

However it might be time add one more lesson to the training. Be an emoji master :). New research from the Media Effects Research Laboratory shows that agents that use emoticons in customer service interactions get better customer satisfaction scores than those that do not 😮 . The research demonstrates that the use of emoticons as well fast responses makes customers feel connected to agents emotionally like they are physically in the same space.

Emoticons help put context and sincerity into a text exchanges. For example an agent response of “I’m sorry that happened” might be interpreted as sarcastic or cold. With a simple emoticon, the response appears more genuine “I’m sorry that happened 🙁 ”

To have some fun with this, I decided to provide some examples for how to use a few common emoticons.

Agent Emotion Emoticons
Apologetic I’m sorry this happened 🙁  We’ll get this straightened out right away
Happy I can absolutely help you with that 🙂
Upset or sadness 🙁 I’m sorry you’ve had to go through so much to get this resolved
Disappointment I apologize for the delay. My computer seems to be running slow today :/
Surprised O_O Oh my!
Pleased or cheeky Happy I could help you  😉
Excitement or laughter You’re welcome 😀


We’d <3 to hear from agents who use emoticons when chatting or texting with customers.