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This article was published on March 3, 2014


    Branded stickers and emoji are coming to messaging apps Viber, Kik, GroupMe and Cubie

    Branded stickers and emoji are coming to messaging apps Viber, Kik, GroupMe and Cubie


    Kaylene Hong
    Story by

    Kaylene Hong

    Kaylene Hong was Asia Reporter for The Next Web between 2013 and 2014, based in Singapore. She is bilingual in English and Mandarin. Stay in Kaylene Hong was Asia Reporter for The Next Web between 2013 and 2014, based in Singapore. She is bilingual in English and Mandarin. Stay in touch via Twitter or Google+.

    TextPride acts as a middleman to help create branded stickers and emoji that can be released on mobile messaging apps — and now it has launched such content on Viber, Kik, GroupMe and Cubie.

    This will bring officially licensed content from more than 200 sports and entertainment brands, including the Auburn Tigers and Wiz Khalifa, to more than 500 million users of all four messaging apps. The content will be available as paid “packs” in dedicated stores within each app, typically including 24-40 emoji and/or stickers starting from $1.99 per pack. 

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    TextPride notes that traditional monetization tactics, such as mobile banner ads, “disrupt the personal feel of the mobile messaging experience and are unlikely to gain widespread adoption, so apps must look towards other opportunities.” It says that branded emoji and stickers are able to plug the gap, citing figures that point to 40 percent of messaging app users incorporating stickers into their messages, with 11 percent buying at least two paid content packs. 

    Japanese messaging app Line is a prime example of how to use stickers — some of which are linked with brands or what they term ‘official accounts’ — to monetize. Despite being a free app, it brought in 34.3 billion yen ($338 million) of revenue for its parent company throughout the whole year of 2013, with stickers contributing 20 percent of the amount.

    Headline image via Roslan Rahman/AFP/Getty Images