Thorough analysis of LINE’s API-type official account! What is the form of information transmission that customers want to read?

Chat communication with “API-type LINE official account” is the perfect marketing method for companies who want to appeal to customers more closely and on a larger scale .
LINE is currently the most popular SNS in Japan, with a usage rate exceeding 70% in 2020 (more than 90% among people in their teens to 40s!). (*Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications “Survey report on usage time and information behavior of information communication media in 2020”)
This time, we will explain a type of corporate account provided by LINE, the “API-type official account”.
Also, at the end of the article, we will be presenting a collection of latest development case studies for web apps that run on LINE, so please stay tuned!

Contents of this article 

  • Difference between LINE Official Account and LINE@
  • Main functions of API-type official accounts
  • API type API available for official accounts
    • 1.Messaging API
    • 2.Partner API
    • 3. Social APIs
  • Estimated Cost of Introducing LINE Official Account (API Type)
  • API type LINE official account implementation example
    • Ichiro Panda (Recruit Jobs)
    • Yamato Transport
  • summary

Difference between LINE Official Account and LINE@

“Functions” and “price” are the major differences between LINE official accounts and LINE@.
The functions will be described later, but compared to the API type LINE official account that can use almost all services currently provided, LINE @ specializes in low-cost simultaneous distribution.
One of the strengths of LINE Official Accounts is that they can approach users in a variety of ways.
However, there is a big difference in terms of cost.
See the diagram below.

While LINE@ can be operated for free, LINE official accounts cost at least 2.5 million yen per month.
While LINE@ is expected to be used by small and medium-sized businesses and individual businesses, LINE official accounts are aimed at large companies who want to promote on a larger scale.
For that reason, LINE official accounts have a way to approach accounts that LINE @ cannot.
LINE@ has the advantage of being able to publicize the account on the LINE platform, such as influx from “stamp distribution” and “friend search”, while it is necessary to carry out publicity steadily using stores and other SNS.

“What is an API?” API is an abbreviation for “Application Programming Interface”. It is an entrance for cooperation between software, and it is a mechanism that allows others to use the software by disclosing the specifications. “Togetter” using Twitter’s API is famous. With the API type LINE official account, it is possible to link the corporate system and LINE .

Main functions of API-type official accounts

1. Acquiring friends with stamps

Official accounts can distribute stamps called “sponsored stamps” that appear when searching the stamp store.

2. Simultaneous sending of messages

This is a function that allows you to send messages to everyone who has added the official LINE account as a friend. The open rate is higher than e-mail magazines, etc., and sending a beneficial message to users can be expected to have a high induction effect.
In addition, you can use the “PR page function” that allows you to send “rich messages” that are highly appealing using images, and long information and coupons that cannot fit on LINE.

3. Timeline posting

You can post various information to the timeline of your friends on the LINE official account. Since users can “like” and “comment” on the post, it can also be used as a place for communication between users.

4.1:1 Talk

You can communicate 1:1 like normal LINE.
Using a mechanism called “Messaging API”, it is also possible to incorporate artificial intelligence that automatically communicates.

5. LINE linkage

Link your member information registered on the website with your LINE account. This is a function that allows you to receive notifications sent by email on LINE, and purchase products on the LINE talk screen.
For other corporate accounts, please see the article below!

API type API available for official accounts

In order to realize various functions on LINE, LINE official accounts provide a service called API.
Available APIs differ for each account, but all three types below can be used with API-type official accounts.

1.Messaging API

It is an API for exchanging messages, and has three main functions.

1. Push message : A function to send messages all at once or individually.

2. Reply message : A function to reply to messages from users. By combining this with an AI engine, you can create a bot.

3. Template message : You can send template messages that can be used on LINE such as rich content and carousels.

By using this API, two-way communication between account-using companies and individual users becomes possible.
You can read more about the Messaging API in the article below.

2.Partner API

Mission Stickers is a service that allows you to use specific stickers for users who meet specific conditions. This API can be used with the privilege of LINE official accounts.
By distributing stamps free of charge to users, you can aim to improve your company’s awareness and foster branding.
See below for more information on stamps.

3. Social APIs

It is an API for linking LINE and your company’s website, and has three main functions.

1. LINE Login : When registering as a member on your company’s website, you can log in with your LINE account just like Facebook or Twitter, and you can skip entering some information.

2. Web API : A function for linking information registered on the site with LINE accounts.

3. Add Friends API : A function to add your company’s LINE account as a friend of users who have logged in to LINE on your website.

By utilizing the Social API, it becomes possible to link registered information on corporate websites with LINE official accounts, allowing users to send personalized messages to LINE.
If you can link customer information and LINE account, you can judge from the customer’s purchase history and send a message with sale information that is likely to lead to purchase.
In addition, follow-up after purchase can be done using LINE, which customers are familiar with, which will lead to higher satisfaction.
One of the strengths of LINE Official Accounts is that they can be used in a variety of ways depending on your ideas, whether it be to improve performance or reduce costs.

Estimated Cost of Introducing LINE Official Account (API Type)

At the beginning, we introduced a comparison between LINE official accounts and LINE@.
How much does it actually cost to introduce a LINE official account?
If you introduce an account with a stamp, it is expected to cost the following amount.

・Account fee: 2.5 million yen per month
・Sponsored stamp: 35 million yen (8 types, posted for 4 weeks)
・Development cost: For each development partner company
・Distribution message: From 1 yen / message

Assuming that you have acquired 300,000 friends through Sponsored Stamps, and you send them a message once a week, it will cost you about 100 million yen a year.

API type LINE official account implementation example

Here, we will take some famous official accounts as examples and explain what kind of API they use.

Ichiro Panda (Recruit Jobs)

Main function

1. Carousel (horizontal scrolling list display) : Template message of Messaging API is used. Click the link to see details.

2. Automatic reply : Reply message of Messaging API is used to talk to Ichiro Panda and get a reply.

Yamato Transport

Main function

1. Account linkage : By registering as a member of Kuroneko Members and linking that information with your LINE account, you will be able to receive notifications on LINE. We use WebAPI of Social API to link information.

2. Estimated delivery date and non-delivery notifications : We use Push messages from the Messaging API to send notifications about individual packages.

summary

1. API-type LINE official accounts can use all the features of LINE

2. All of Messaging API, Partner API and Social API are available

3. If stamps and simultaneous distribution are performed regularly, the usage cost is about 100 million yen per year

API-type LINE official accounts have a unique feature that other official accounts do not have: the ability to acquire a large number of friends through sponsored stickers.

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