July 7, 2022

With rising popularity of South Korean music and now dramas and movies, the sales of original soundtrack albums for the latter have surged higher over k-pop merchandise sales in the wake of the prolonged COVID-19 pandemic.

According to Ktown4u, an online shopping mall that sells albums of K-pop groups and related goods, last year, 28,939 copies of soundtrack albums of hit dramas and movies were sold, thus marking a huge jump from 8,784 copies in 2020 and 2,624 in 2019.

Last year, soundtrack albums generated 480.6 million won ($401,930) in revenue, while 2019’s figure came in at 39.5 million won.

According to data, magazines that featured K-pop artists also saw their sales jump to 4.06 billion won in 2021 from 459.6 million won marked in 2019. The income from outdoor billboard advertisements sharply rose to 150.7 million won last year from 3 million won a year prior.

Ktown4u commented that in addition to the global cultural trend in watching Korean dramas and movies, well-known K-pop artists’ participation in soundtracks have boosted the sales of soundtrack albums.

The company which also runs a billboard advertising business mentioned that an increasing number of overseas fans are requesting billboard ads as well.

However, sales of K-pop artists-related merchandise on the other hand failed to cash in on the unprecedented boom, as many in-person performances were canceled or delayed amid the lingering COVID-19 pandemic.

The sales of concert light sticks last year’s fell to 15,971 from the 73,135 sold in 2019 and 88,459 in 2020, hence dragging the revenue down to 504.2 million won from 2.63 billion won in 2020 and 2.34 billion won in 2019.