Apple recently launched new YouTube channels for Japan and Korea, highlighting those markets’ growing potential for global brands. However, the company might benefit more from building its presence on KakaoStory or LINE. While YouTube is one of the top online video sites in Japan and Korea, its popularity pales in comparison to those local social media channels, where brands can also publish and share video content with fans.

More Koreans use KakaoStory, an Instagram-like social platform that has grown rapidly since its launch in 2012, than YouTube. In Japan, many videos are shared over messaging app LINE. The app more than doubled its user base over the past year and now reaches over 40% of the country’s population. However, L2’s Intelligence Report: Video finds that most global brands fail to utilize these local platforms to draw in Korean and Japanese consumers.

The Beauty industry contains a few exceptions, such as Kiehl’s and Estée Lauder. In Q4 2014, the brand posted its “Kiehl’s Heritage Campaign” video (previously posted on its Korean Facebook account) to KakaoStory. Estée Lauder employed a similar strategy, posting product videos on its LINE account page that directed fans to the brand’s local site.

Kiehl's KakaoStory campaign

In addition to broadening the brands’ reach in the Japanese and Korean markets, these videos also brought together content and commerce. The video captions linked fans to the brands’ local sites, encouraging them down the path to purchase.

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