The United States has never been shy to accept new ideas for products regardless of their origin. K-pop toys are one of those new ideas that can turn out to pay big bucks to major US brands to formulate products around this music genre. If you’re new to K-pop, let us start by explaining what it is and why you should know about it.
In early January of this year, the large toy manufacturer Mattel announced that they will be offering a whole new product line geared toward K-pop. Their first line of business is with the popular South Korean musical group BTS. Mattel is producing facsimiles of all seven band members which consumers can purchase later this year. This just signifies the start of many K-pop product endorsements and collaborations in the United States to come.
Many US businesses have dabbled with the promotion of K-pop singers and actors in the past. Many of these collaborations were for other products not related to the individual or group. In most cases, the K-pop group or individual was utilized as a spokesperson for an American product. This was a tactic used by American companies to reach the South Korean demographic with their marketing efforts.
However, much of this type of advertising is changing. K-pop superstars are becoming more and more interested in promoting products that are directly affiliated with their own talents. While an ABAY vape kit or SKYY vodka are products these stars probably prefer to endorse from a distance, K-pop artists increasingly want to back the selling of products that promote their individual goals.
Understanding the change in K-pop promotional efforts, American companies are looking for a way to find lucrative profits for both their shareholders and the K-pop icons. Instead of using the fame of K-pop celebrities to sell more existing products, US manufacturers are looking for ways to construct products that solely promote the celebrity. Hint, the BTS product line.
BTS has been on a journey over the last year or so finding collaborations with various US-based businesses. Apart from the toy product line with Mattel, BTS has been working with Puma and LINE. They plan to release their own style of shoes in the near future. This is just considered the start of many collaborations to follow with this popular K-pop group over the next few years.
Mattel isn’t the only US brand that is hopping on board. Other big brands like Amazon and Barnes and Noble are working to integrate the K-pop craze into their revenue streams. This is done by offering official products and albums that were traditionally restricted to K-pop oriented retailers. This has allowed fans of the K-pop wave to get access to much of their favorite music and shows at a much cheaper rate. This is because the bigger brands like Amazon and Barnes and Noble are more geared towards bringing K-pop products to the masses instead of charging an immense markup on the products.
The future of K-Pop interests in the United States seems to be bright. The popular K-pop girl band BLACKPINK was signed to play at Coachella this April, an indication that the Korean music sensation will continue to spread across the US in the years to come.