Stickers have become a popular feature within social messaging apps, especially in Asia. Japan-based messaging app LINE has been leading the trend with more than 1.8 billion stickers sent a day.
LINE’s innovation around stickers helps it stand out among competitors like WhatsApp, Kakao Talk and Facebook Messenger.
Last May, LINE introduced the Creators Market, allowing people to create and sell their own stickers on the LINE platform. The marketplace has been quite the success – 390,000 people from 156 countries registered, and creators made a collective $75 million in its first year. It now offers 100,000 sticker sets for sale.
Stickers might also have played a significant role in helping boost LINE revenues – the company reported a 70% increase in revenues YoY for the first quarter of 2015.
Storytelling with Stickers
With 205 million active users, LINE has a wide reach and is especially popular in Japan, Thailand, Taiwan and Indonesia. The popularity of the app and the creative potential of its stickers have made it an attractive channel for brands like Dior, Uniqlo, Burberry and Coca-Cola.
Like other social networks, LINE allows brands to create Official Accounts and reach out to followers. Quite unlike other networks, it also allows brands to create customized sticker sets and reach audiences in real-time.
For example, Burberry live-telecasted its collections from the 2015 London Fashion Week in real-time over LINE. The fashion giant promoted the event with an animated video featuring popular LINE characters dressed in iconic Burberry designs on their way to the fashion show. Burberry also released a branded sticker set inspired by the story line of the video.
In 2014, Coca-Cola created a Coke Break set of stickers to encourage young Indonesians to enjoy Coca-Cola during their break hours. To get the stickers, people had to buy two bottles of Coca-Cola and enter in unique codes online.
Brands aren’t the only ones to use LINE to engage with their audiences. Paul McCartney has over 10 million followers on LINE and recently launched a set of “sound stickers,” ahead of his Japan Tour. The stickers combine images with audio phrases in English and Japanese, and are on sale for 100 virtual coins, or £1.49.
This post is a part of our People’s Insights Monthly Brief for May, Tech Innovation – Friend or Foe?