LINE users, Watch Out! Luxury brands are coming after you with their future marketing campaigns. Brands such as Longchamp, Chanel and Mont Blanc have already come up with many creative marketing ideas for WeChat, China’s all-encompassing chat application, and soon enough they’ll be working with LINE.
In terms of monetisation, LINE and WeChat are the two mobile messaging apps that dominate the global market. Their main competitors are Facebook’s Messenger and WhatsApp apps but these are yet to generate any revenue. WeChat already has over 840 million monthly active users worldwide (predominantly in China) and LINE has over 220 million monthly active users, with two-thirds of them in Japan, Taiwan, Thailand and Indonesia.
See also: Marketing to Millennials
Advert and marketing campaigns are becoming ever more important for these messaging apps. In 2016, “performance marketing” sales at WeChat hit RMB 4.4 billion ($640 million). In 2015, adverts already made up a third of LINE’s total revenue at ¥120 billion ($1.1 billion). Businesses pay LINE to create official accounts and are then able to send information and free promotional stickers to subscribed users. In 2016, LINE launched a new service aimed at smaller companies and individuals who may not be able to afford fees for an official account. This means that users are now able to communicate directly with brands and businesses. Rather than spamming users with ads, the official LINE accounts are a direct and effective way to communicate and interact with consumers.
Many businesses, and now luxury brands, communicate with consumers and share discount coupons on LINE and WeChat in order to attract them to their physical stores. In June 2016, the luxury fashion brand Chanel held a fashion show in Beijing and used its official WeChat account to interact with guests by sharing videos from other shows and previews of its new collection.
This integration with messaging apps by businesses and luxury brands will only continue to grow, especially within Asia. From this point onwards, brands will have to adopt Messenger App Marketing in order to stay ahead or even keep up with the market.
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