K-Pop World Map Reveals Some Surprises

      August 23, 2019 13:57

      A worldwide geographic map of the popularity of K-pop unveiled by fandom lab Blip offers some surprises. The city that loves K-pop the most is not its home of Seoul but Ho Chi Minh City, and densely populated Indonesia has as many people who listen to K-pop as Korea.

      Bangtan Boys, also known as BTS, perhaps less surprisingly, are the most beloved K-pop combo, but Black Pink, EXO, Momoland and TWICE also have such strong fan bases as well.

      Blip analyzed YouTube data on 76 K-pop idol bands from July 2018 to July 2019. Over 26.55 billion searches have been made on YouTube worldwide, and only 10.1 percent came from Korea, meaning the rest were watched abroad.

      This is the first time the global popularity of K-pop has been quantified.

      A country-by-country analysis shows that 9.9 percent of clicks were from Indonesia, second only to Korea's 10.1 percent. It was followed by Thailand with 8.1 percent and Vietnam and the U.S. with 7.4 percent.

      Blip also came up with clicks per capita for each city. Ho Chi Minh came top with an average of 393.2 views per inhabitant. Bangkok's 115.1 was also higher than Seoul's 91.1.

      By continent, BTS enjoyed absolute support in the U.S. and Europe, which accounted for 20.9 percent of searches related to K-pop. On the other hand, girl bands Black Pink and TWICE enjoyed great popularity in Asia.

      Black Pink had more than twice as many searches as BTS in Indonesia and Thailand, and TWICE had a strong fan base in Japan.

      Five groups -- Black Pink, BTS, EXO, Momoland and TWICE -- accounted for 54.3 percent of all the K-pop related searches.

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