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Reasons for K-pop popularity worldwide 2020

In a survey conducted in 2020, around 18.8 percent of respondents stated that the genre K-pop is popular in their country for catchy rhythms and choruses.


During the past decade, Korean pop music has become popular in countries all around the world. In a survey about the popularity of K-pop in their home country, around 28.8 percent of respondents reported that it was very popular to the point that not only enthusiasts but also ordinary people knew of it. K-pop is known for its boy- and girl groups, consisting of multi-talented singers and dancers. The industry is known for being extremely competitive.


At the first glance it might seem that the success has come out of nowhere, but the South Korean government has strategically sold cultural contents first in Asia and then in the rest of the world. Hallyu, the South Korean wave, has had an immense positive effect on the South Korean economy. For example, a report estimates that the three concerts held by the boy group BTS in Seoul in 2019 have a total direct and indirect impact of around 923 billion South Korean won. In 2019, BTS were the most popular K-pop group in the world.

Main reasons for South Korean pop music's (K-pop) popularity worldwide in 2020

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Release date

January 2020


Worldwide, South Korea

Survey time period

September 24 to November 4, 2020

Number of respondents

4,695 foreigners in worldwide*

Age group

15-59 years

Special properties

respondents who experienced South Korean music contents

Method of interview

Online panel

Supplementary notes

*This survey was conducted in the following 17 countries: China, Japan, Taiwan, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, India, Vietnam, Australia, United States, Brazil, Argentina, France, UK, Russia, Turkey, UAE, and South Africa.

Original question: "Why do you think K-pop became so popular?"

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Statistics on "K-pop and big 4 entertainment agencies in South Korea"

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