Five Friday Facts #85


Line hits 200M users; adds 100M in 6 months
A new article by TechInAsia reports that Japan-based chat app Line has reached a milestone user base of 200 million. Line had just recently reached 100 million in January of this year, indicating that the chat app has doubled its user base in the last six months alone. Korean competitor KakaoTalk reached its first 100 million users earlier this month. China-based WeChat is closing in on 400 million users, most of whom are based in China. TechInAsia notes that Line is commemorating this milestone by giving out premium stickers until July 26.

Hashtags not doing much for brands on FB
A recent article by Inside Facebook revealed that hashtags have not led to higher engagement for brands on Facebook. The new Twitter-like feature launched in early June on the social network, and hashtag prominence grew steadily throughout the month. Based on a study by Simply Measured, the findings indicate that nearly 20 percent of all Interbrand 100 posts contained hashtags by the end of June–up from 3 percent on June 12. Hashtagged brand posts also saw two peaks during the month, with 26 percent of brand posts incorporating them on both July 20 and July 27. The study also found, however, that these hashtags were still not having much of an effect on engagement levels for brands. Nate Smith, a Marketing analyst for Simply Measured is noted as suggesting hashtags may become more effective if their presence is collaboratively reinforced and given cohesion across multiple platforms.

Simply Measured’s report further indicated that visual content receive the highest levels of engagement by a long shot, as photo and video posts received 98 percent of all engagement on brand posts. Simply Measured notes that brands are well-aware of the allure of imagery, as 80 percent of brand posts from the period featured photos or video. Meanwhile, questions received negligible engagement (thereby justifying the termination of Facebook questions, a product option previously available for brand pages).

Another interesting finding from the study revealed that posts between 50 and 99 characters received the highest levels of engagement. The success of brand posts declined as they got longer, with a sharp drop at posts over 250 characters in length.

In India, Line added 5M new users in 3 weeks
Line has been turning up the heat on its competitors, establishing aggressive expansion tactics worldwide. As TechInAsia reports, this strategy has reaped its rewards for the Japan-based chat app, particularly in its recent efforts and focus on the Indian market. A mere three weeks into launching a TV ad campaign in the market, Line reported adding 5 million new users in India. That’s almost 250,000 new users per day, in India alone. TechInAsia notes that, given a majority 70 percent of Line users are overseas users, odds are there were some Indian users prior to the official launch in the market. In any case, Line is clearly starting to tip the scales, by focusing on areas where WeChat’s dominance amongst Asian chat apps remains largely curtailed (virtually everywhere outside of China).

90% of Thai netizens use social media
Social media has continued to grow in popularity in Thailand this year. The country is the 16th biggest for Facebook, with 18 million users. Meanwhile, Bangkok remained the biggest city on Facebook, a title earned in 2012, and also continued to be one of the two most-Instagrammed places worldwide. So it comes as no surprise that Thais are even more engaged on social media this year. Based on a survey by Thailand’s Electronic Transactions Development Agency (ETDA), findings reported by TechInAsia illustrated how Thais spent a weekly average of 32 hours on the internet, with over 38 percent spending at least 20 hours on a weekly basis. The survey also found that more than 90 percent of Thai netizens were using social media. Facebook remained the most popular platform, claiming over 92 percent of responses. YouTube came in at 63.7 percent, while Line followed close behind with just over 61 percent. Desktop PCs were still the most popular choice for web access (45 percent), while notebooks claimed just over a quarter of responses. Smartphones followed with 22.7 percent, while Tablets came in with 6.8 percent.

Variety of options still key for social logins
eMarketer recently reported on the state of social logins in Q2 2013. Although Facebook has remained the most popular platform amongst consumers, its slight majority amongst other social login platforms–a 54 percent stake in Q3 2012–has declined as other social login platforms have maintained preference amongst “solid minorities”. The Janrain study indicates that Facebook’s share of 46.2 percent holds against Google’s 34 percent. Yahoo comes in third, but trails far behind with just 6.6 percent of respondents indicating preference. Twitter follows Yahoo with 5.7 percent. Twitter in particular has lost significant ground as a preferred platform for social logins, losing a considerable share since holding 10 percent Q3 2012.

eMarketer notes that the preference for social logins directly corresponds to the kind of site being accessed. Facebook logins were much more preferred for gaming and entertainment sites (64 percent). Facebook came out ahead with a majority on music and retail sites as well (61 percent and 59 percent respectively). Nonetheless, the breakdown shows a widened spread of preference for social logins, indicating that variety has remained crucial for the success of social logins throughout this year.