TechInAsia ran an article today with some information about LINE's fee structure for corporate accounts:
Line charges a 2 million yen (US$19,500) initial sign-up fee for brand accounts, on top of a monthly fee that starts at 1.5 million yen (US$14,600). Companies also pay the service 10 million yen (US$98,000) to offer branded stickers. Pricing for the new ad platform has not yet been disclosed.
Given that Japan is an advanced country accustomed to highly sophisticated marketing — yes, marketing in Japan is much more refined and sophisticated than in USA — I am not too surprised that LINE was able to charge such a hefty monthly fee to brands. I am however interested in the pricing for the branded stickers – a whopping US$98,000 that I presume to be one-time. This is intriguing specifically to me in terms of the potential change that StaaS (my kinky abbreviation for Stickers-as-a-Service to distinguish it from the more general SaaS) could bring to this fight.
To be more specific, the $98,000 price tag will exclude smaller campaigns when it's factored into the Project NPV (Net Present Value) calculation. But given the balance between users' distinct needs for variety ("My stickers are bigger than yours") and social currency — it'd be real fun to answer a devilish Cersei sticker with a witty Tyrion one — I believe there's a much larger market to tap into if needs for lower fixed costs matched with lower expected usage volume or shorter period of promotion are available.
Think democratisation of branded sticker promotion.
In this case, StaaS would be a perfect vehicle to serve this market, as it satisfies the platform operators' need for a certain annual expected revenue from a client while allowing smaller campaigns from a single client to go live.
Of course, how to prevent sticker glut is something that can't be omitted. But there's definitely a void to fill here with this particular one-time pricing of LINE.