Now McCartney is rewarding his fans on Line by releasing a set of free digital stickers that can be used within the app’s messaging feature. Some of them are above: they fit well with the cartoonish stickers from other characters, celebrities and brands on Line. Sir Paul’s stickers are free for the next six months, even though the likes of Hello Kitty, Disney, FC Barcelona and PSY tend to charge £1.49 for their sticker packs on Line.
Line was born in Japan, where all things Beatles still have a huge following – hence the 3.1m followers for McCartney’s profile – but the company has ambitious global expansion plans. In fact, it’s already doing rather well.
“80% of our traffic is from outside Japan. People consider it to be more Asian, but now it’s a different story,” Line exec Sunny Kim said last week. “We’ve got 17m users in Taiwan, 18m in Thailand, 14m in Indonesia, but now also 15m in Spain, and we expect to have more than 10m users in Mexico and other Latin American countries this year.”
At Music Ally, we’re fascinated by the growth of Line and similar apps like KakaoTalk, WeChat and WhatsApp, and we think the music industry should be keeping a keen eye on these new social platforms. As they look to sign up more artists (and in Japan, Line is also working on a digital music service) they could become important new partners for musicians and labels.