K-pop big-name K-pop agencies have jumped into the preoccupation of “online platforms.”
It has already been used as an important channel for K-pop to frequently meet fans from afar as it has been in full swing. However, due to the spread of COVID 19, ‘Uncontact (non-face-to-face) communication’ has become important, and the use of online platforms is in full swing.
SM Entertainment is a leading agency. SM recently signed an MOU with Naver to push for joint global projects to strengthen its global entertainment competitiveness.
By combining SM’s expertise in discovering and producing global artists and Naver’s based technology, the company will join forces in expanding the global market for its “Fanship” platform, a global membership community.
FANSHIP is a paid-in fan club community launched by Naver last year. Stars can manage their fan clubs themselves. It is also possible to disclose exclusive content for fans, and to check what activities fans have done and how much they have used the content.
Many singers as well as actors are already using FANSHIP. Naver is showing its willingness to further expand its overseas fan market by cooperating with globally popular SM singers.
Big Hit Entertainment, which owns the global group BTS, is already actively operating its own fan community platform, Weverse. It has been receiving positive responses for its convenience in easily checking singers’ schedules and communicating in real time.
There is also a special content that will be released only through Weverse. In November last year, BTS unveiled its own travel program “Bon Voyage” season 4 through Weverse. Previously, the series had been released on Naver’s V app channel.
Another feature of Weverse is that it works offline. BTS’ concert in Seoul in October last year was packed with tickets sold out, but it was possible not to line up thanks to its preorder of MDs through commerce platform Weverse Shop. He also sent messages to BTS members, checking the waiting time of the food zone through Weverse.
Earlier, Yoon Seok-joon, co-CEO of Big Hit, said about Weverse and Weverse Shop that it was one of Big Hit’s plans to build a “one-stop service with the music industry.”
Weverse was created by BeNX, a subsidiary of Big Hit. BTS, the team’s junior group “TXT,” and Source Music’s group “G-FRIEND,” which was incorporated as a big hit label last year, are communicating with fans through the platform.
Especially noticeable is that other teams from other agencies besides Big Hit have also entered Weverse. It is a group called “Seventeen” belonging to Pledis Entertainment. This is the moment when the influence of Big Hit and Weverse is gradually expanding.
The Fast Company, a U.S. economic media outlet, recently placed Big Hit on the list of “The World’s Most Innovative Companies 2020” after Snap, Microsoft and Tesla, drawing attention to “Weverse” and “Weverse Shop.”
As seen in BTS’ fandom “ARMY,” loyal fans can help make the team a singer who can influence the world. An independent platform that can only be shared by stars and fans is important to make them a “hot community.”