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Using LINE for advertising your business in Japan

Do you have a business you would like to promote in Japan?

If your goal is to reach the Japanese audience effectively, then advertising your business on LINE may be the best solution for you.

There are several ways foreign companies can use the LINE platform to leverage their marketing campaigns in Japan.

Here is the ultimate guide for non-Japanese companies wishing to advertise on LINE.

What is LINE?

LINE is Japan’s most popular social media platform.

Like WhatsApp and WeChat, LINE is a messaging app that allows users to chat and make free calls to friends. Most famous for its animated stickers, this super app also has other services such as LINE News, LINE Shopping, LINE Manga, LINE Games, and more.

photo of LINE interface

Want to learn more?

Read our article on why LINE is the most popular social media in Japan →

Engage with fans and customers via LINE Official Account

LINE Official Account is a business profile page in LINE.

You can use it to update ‘friends’ on promotions, make posts on LINE VOOM, increase online engagement with customers, send direct messages for customer support and share coupons for special deals.

Want to learn more?

Read our article on LINE Official Account → or check out the latest LINE Business Guide →

Reach Japanese mobile users with LINE Ads

With 95 million MAU, which amounts to approximately 80% of the entire Japanese population, LINE Ads is the most effective way to reach Japanese mobile users.

Similar to CPC ads on other popular social media platforms, your LINE Ad will appear in different locations within the LINE app as well as the LINE Ads Network, which includes an array of other apps. You can pay per click on banner ads or by impression for highly effective video ads.

You can also define your target audience according to user demographics and interests as well as lookalike audiences. Find out more on how businesses can use LINE Ads in Japan

How LINE compares to Facebook in Japan

While LINE JAPAN has 95 million MAU in Japan, Facebook only has 15 million.

Yet, because of Facebook’s global popularity, many businesses run Japanese advertising campaigns on Facebook without researching which social media channels their target audience is using.

Want to learn more?

Read our article on why LINE Ads might be a better digital strategy for your Japanese campaigns than Facebook Ads →

LINE Case Studies

Gaming: DeNA Games

This Japanese game company successfully used LINE Ads to gain new customers and retain dormant users.

Make sure to read about their tips on how to increase CTR by experimenting with ad creatives.

Skincare: L’Occitane

L’Occitane has found an effective way to increase both online sales as well as digital membership cards using LINE Japan.

They offset their lower in-store sales with their online campaigns during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Read the full case study here →

Start advertising on Japan’s most popular social media platform

In order to start advertising on LINE, you will need to open a LINE Official Account and LINE Ads Account.

Your LINE Ads Account will need to link to your LINE Official Account.

How to open a LINE Official Account in Japan

Register for a LINE Official Account (unverified)

Both individuals and businesses can open this type of account.

The basic features are the same as verified accounts, and a Premium ID can be bought to switch to a paid plan.

☆ Click here to open an unverified account →

Register for a LINE Official Account (verified)

Only available for companies with a business registered in Japan that undergo a strict approval process by LINE Japan.

☆ Click here to open a verified account →

Premium ID

Only available for select individuals and businesses that undergo a strict approval process by LINE Japan.

How to get started with LINE Ads in Japan

Register for a LINE Ads Account

Currently, LINE Japan only offers overseas advertisers prepaid accounts using a Japanese credit card.

For a post-pay account, it is challenging for overseas advertisers to pass LINE Japan’s pre-approval process. If you require help opening a LINE Ads Account, we at DMFA can help. Depending on the credit check results, we can invoice you for the ad spend and open an ad account on your behalf. 

☆ Click here to open a LINE Ads Account

☆ Need help? Click here to get in touch with our LINE team

Industries & services not eligible to advertise on LINE

    • Religious institutions
    • Beauty salons (exceptions may apply)
    • Gambling (excluding public competitions and public lottery)
    • Adult content
    • Dating sites (exceptions may apply)
    • Multi-level marketing companies
    • Detective services
    • Tobacco, electronic cigarettes
    • Weapons
    • Political parties
    • Medical services and clinics (exceptions may apply)
    • Unapproved drugs and medical devices
    • Money-lending businesses such as consumer finance, and pawn shops (exceptions may apply)
    • Online businesses (e.g., self-improvement seminars)
    • Financing such as fund-raising, donations and crowdfunding (exceptions may apply)

Let’s talk!

As part of the SoftBank family, we are LINE’s official partners and provide comprehensive LINE Official Account and LINE Ads management services. 


Simply fill in the form and our team will get back to you as soon as possible →

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