If you’re new to K-pop, you might be wondering how a genre of music sung primarily in Korean became so popular across the globe.
Although many factors contribute to the genre’s global popularity, here are a few reasons it has become so famous.
Music videos in the K-pop world are popular for their complex storylines. Many music videos are like short films, cutting to scenes that build a storyline amid dramatic dance sequences.
Groups are also famous for creating a storyline that spans several songs. What they do is connect the lyrics and images between music videos. When watched together, an audience would be able to connect a complex storyline formed from multiple music videos.
Some groups take this a step further, making their entire discography into one complex alternate universe. However, it’s not that common compared with other types of storytelling, as it takes years of planning, and it can be challenging to execute well.
2. Color Theory
K-pop features elaborate costumes and sets that attracts a wide range of audience visually.
These aesthetic choices are partially drawn from a theory that states that color can unconsciously affect people emotionally, psychologically, and physically.
K-pop idols, set designers, and stylists purposely make use of colors and patterns to draw in the audience. Additionally, the visual effects help them connect to their songs.
K-pop groups are great in portraying and bringing to life distinctive concepts or themes. A group may become popular by sticking to a specific concept over various comebacks. Some might switch up their aesthetics and vibe with each return to the stage.
Groups can freely switch between concepts to fit new title songs. Furthermore, these help them show the different sides of themselves and the music that they produce.
4. Deep Lyrics
Although K-pop songs are famous for being catchy and cute, their lyrics are quite often inspirational.
Many artists are writing their own lyrics and expressing themselves through music. Songs often discuss mental health concerns, hardships, and current social issues. Their deep lyrics allow their fans to feel like they aren’t alone in their struggles. Additionally, they speak for those who feel they cannot.
5. Addicting Hooks
Apart from their lyrics, K-pop is known for its extraordinarily catchy and addicting melodies. Whether it’s a cute and bouncy song or a dark and sexy vibe, their hooks are often difficult to get out of your head despite the language barrier.
Dancing is the most essential part of any K-pop group’s performance. It ties together the lyrics, beat, and aesthetic of each song harmoniously.
Each live performance includes singing and rapping while performing intense choreographies to entertain their fans.
Companies often release dance practice videos that show the group performing the dance at their studio. This allows the artists to showcase their dancing skills in a playful environment that is more relaxed than a formal stage setting.
7. Training Programs
To become a K-pop idol, you must undergo intensive training through the Korean trainee system. Most idols begin training at an entertainment company in their early teens after being street-casted or passing an intense audition.
This process is extremely competitive. Each trainee fights to keep their place in the program to earn a spot in the debut team. However, it ensures that those who make their debut are the very best and are already highly skilled performers.
8. Talent Training
Part of the trainee program includes grooming each prospective idol to have various talents.
Idol trainees must learn how to play at least one instrument to perform at concerts or write their own songs. Additionally, they are likely to take acting classes so they can appear in TV shows and movies to help promote themselves and the group.
K-pop idols also need to learn a second language so they could reach a larger audience. Common languages they study are English, Japanese, and Mandarin.
Many groups have released songs or completed albums in a second language. This helped them promote their songs and gain fans in different countries.
Many fans start liking a K-pop group after finding a member with a compatible vibe and a good personality. Idols work to display their personalities to help garner attention to themselves and the group as a whole.
Most K-pop idols also make TV show appearances and do interviews to further engage with their fans. These are excellent opportunities to showcase their cute and delightful personalities, helping them keep their fans.
Trips to and from the airport are like an idol’s catwalk. Fans come to see their idol’s OOTDs sense and note which brands they favor.
Many idols have become fashion icons, starting their own fashion trends across the globe. They are famous for trying new (and sometimes crazy) color combinations, repurposing clothing items in new ways, wearing mismatched patterns, and creating unique clothing layers.
12. Marketing Strategies
Thanks to their amazing entertainment companies and marketing strategies, K-pop has become a global phenomenon.
Groups usually have comebacks at least two or three times a year. They might even return four or five times if they’re releasing a repackaged album or a single. Groups might also promote as sub-units and soloists to gain more attention.
The entire group will often appear for multiple weeks on stages to perform live in front of a small audience. These performances could be streamed live or released online at a later date. You’ll also find some various programs that exist solely for K-pop groups to come and promote themselves and their new songs.
Idols also share group SNS profiles that allow them to go live with fans or post behind the scenes photos and videos to constantly stay connected with their fans.
Many people wonder why K-pop groups and their songs are so popular around the world. When you know the training, hardwork, and effort everyone put into their craft, you really won’t be surprised. K-pop idols are truly one of the most talented, committed, and entertaining artists across the globe.