BTS: New directions for K-pop’s ongoing global success

With their latest new album, “Map of the Soul: Persona”, BTS topped both U.S. and U.K.’s album charts and continued on their K-Pop sensation in the world.


What is their success factors and future path? Mason Korea’s faculty member and expert on the industry Prof. Gyu Tag Lee contributed an article on East Asia Foundation with his views on new directions for K-Pop’s Ongoing Global Success.

“BTS emphasizes their ‘Korean-ness’, or their identity as South Korean artists, while they pursue global universality. They do not have a single non-Korean or Korean-American member. They also have intentionally refrained from singing songs by foreign composers or using English lyrics in order to satisfy non-Korean consumers, as producer Bang revealed in a 2017 interview”, he said in the article.

Prof. Lee also stated, “BTS adds another element that successfully differentiates them from global pop music and other K-Pop groups: sincerity. This is the most commonly cited reason for Korean and foreign fans liking BTS. The perception of BTS’ sincerity formed as part of the process of gaining popularity abroad.”

Something that differentiates BTS from other group is that they are not part of a major big name agency.

In the article he emphasized, “Unlike other globally popular groups, BTS is a part of a mid-to small-sized agency. They are “dirt spoon idols” that started without the aid and support of an established managing agency and its fandom. BTS started from the bottom and steadily and slowly gained fans, eventually becoming top world stars. In other words, BTS’ status as global stars was built not only on reliable support from a big agency, but also on their outstanding musical abilities and their continuous efforts to communicate with their fans.”

Please check the full article in this link to East Asia Foundation website.