The cultural impact of the K-Pop group BTS around the world

Many ask themselves what does BTS has that makes them so successful and loved by many. BTS simply are a different group: they are great human beings, they truly love their fans, and they know the struggles of working hard even when you reached your goals and exceeded your own expectations. They started from the bottom in a barely known company, little by little, they built their fame with success and humbleness.

Bangtan Sonyeondan started their journey on 2013, they were teenagers looking for their true selves and learning how to love themselves. They are a K-Pop group composed of 7 members: Kim Namjoon—the leader—, Kim Seokjin, Min Yoongi better known as Suga, Jung Hoseok also known as J-Hope, Park Jimin, Kim Taehyung (V), and Jeon Jungkook.
The K-Pop group has broken many barriers, including the language one, proving that passion for music—or whatever you do—is enough to reach your dream. They have received many important awards from all around the world, they have broken so many records it’s insane!

The boy group is more than just catchy songs and pretty faces; they have a big heart. BTS created a campaign along with UNICEF to fight against violence and bullying, called Love Myself Campaign. Their good work made them global ambassadors and gave them a chance to give a speech at the United Nations.

They have broken many Guiness World Records including: most twitter engagements, fastest time to reach one million followers on TikTok, most viewed YouTube music video in 24 hours, best selling album in South Korea, most-viewed concert livestream, and I believe there are and will be more.

They began giving concerts in South Korea, then their popularity led them to other parts of the world. Their last tour was hosted at the biggest and most-popular stadiums such as the Rose Bowl, the MetLife Stadium, the Wembley Stadium, and the Seoul Olympic Stadium. This tour was a benefit for tourism because many fans traveled to the concerts, which also means they had to book flights and hotels to stay. Billboard Boxscore estimated that the tour earned around $116.6 million, plus $5.8 million in tickets.

Seoul, South Korea launched a tourism campaign together with BTS to increase the visits to the country. It was composed by seven advertisements that included food, relaxation, sightseeing, entertainment, shopping, history, and fashion, and each of the boys made a video presenting a theme. The reality is that since BTS became popular, the interest in visiting Korea, as well as the interest in Korean culture, has increased. In 2018, the Hyundai Research Institute reported that BTS generated around $3.54 billion to the country, being the biggest contribution to South Korea’s GDP.

BTS also has been a great influence for academics. The stories in most of their videos are inspired by books, which had led more people to get interested in literature. Some of these books are Jungs Map of the Soul, Demian, The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas, Into the Magic Shop, and Kafka on the Shore. Most of these have a lot of psychology elements which have caught the interest of many professionals as to why they chose these stories.

Even Paulo Coelho is a big fan of BTS and he has expressed it through his Twitter.

Murray Stein, writer of Jung’s Map of the Soul, even released a version where he thanked the boy band for influencing the youth to read this kind of stuff again, and he also has been very interested in what they will do with the future stories in their videos. Harvard University even included them in their business curriculum. A professor of this campus wrote a 22-pages research about the influence of the group in the K-Pop community around the world. Imagine the impact!

Bangtan has also increased the interest for learning the Korean language. Many reports have shown that everyday there’s more people who want to learn Korean because they want to understand the lyrics of the songs, or they want to understand what their Tweets are saying, or even watch their videos because there aren’t many subtitles options. BTS now will contribute to education by selling a pack of books titled Lean! Korean with BTS, which will help you to learn from the most basic things to intermediate, pronunciation, exercises to practice, and even stickers to put on your keyboard to write in Hangul. They themselves are also learning other languages because they want to communicate better with their fans. They have broken many language barriers throught music, collaborating with artist of different nationalities. Some of these being Halsey, Steve Aoki, Sia, Nicki Minaj, and J-Hope made a remake of the song ‘Chicken Noodle Soup’ along with the Latino-Americana Becky G.

They are ambassadors of many brands such as Hyundai, FILA, PUMA, even Baskin Robbins! There is BTS in everything for everyone, demonstrating the variety of their fandom; girls from 12 years old, boys of every age, professional women who already have a defined career, old ladies who want to protect them… you name it! Their merch has about everything; from school supplies to phones. They also have a brand named BT21, which are cute little characters that represent each one of them. They created them and gave them a story, and I think that’s really cute. Jimin explained that they did it because they wanted to remind people to enjoy the little things of life, maybe that simple happiness that grownups have forgotten in the middle of their busy lives.

Let’s just talk about everything they touch, gets sold out. Every shirt they wear, every product they use, goes sold out in SECONDS when ARMY finds out. They even sold out a car!!! Demonstrating they are the best ambassadors. Their new comeback is said to be retro, they even sold cassettes and vinyls, ARMY sold out turntables and cassette players.

Their impact is so strong that Korea is going to build a new stadium so they can give more big concerts there.
I could keep mentioning reasons why they have a great impact globally and I would never finish because there are so many things I could mention. I really encourage everyone to give them a chance. Many could think their music is for little girls, but the reality is that is more than that. The message in their songs are directed to anyone who might need them. They talk about loving yourself, they talk about managing anxiety and they mention many social problems.
If you want to try getting into BTS the time is now! Their new song comes out this Friday and it’s titled ‘Dynamite’. The concept will be retro, between 80’s a 90’s and everyone believes is going to be a masterpiece.

This might be cliché to say but BTS paved the way!