I'm delighted to be here at YG Entertainment, home of Psy, Big Bang, 21, CL. And you'll notice I have my bowtie on, in homage to Psy and Gangnam Style. I'm here with Woo Jin Kim, head of a global artist lab. Great to meet you. >> Great to meet you professor. >> For the benefit of our viewers, can you briefly introduce yourself? >> First of all, thank you for having me here in this a great opportunity for the program. My name is Woo Jin, I work at YG headquarter. I lead the Global Artist Lab which does A and R work. We also manage overseas activity, and I had a pleasure of working with them for over the last three years, and happy to be here to discuss what we do and what we stand for. >> Fantastic, let's start with a fairly simple question. What does YG stand for? >> So YG is the nickname of the founder, Mr. Young himself, and he was called by his peers as basically shortened for his Korean nickname. >> Okay, this is a course on marketing so can you tell us about YG's marketing strategy? >> Well, we have many different strategies, I'll have to say. But we sort of internally define our overall business marketing strategy as YG Spirit. And those spirit can be break down into five keywords which is innovative which is excellent quality, familism, creative thinking, evolving, and unique identity. And by these five principles, based on that, we try to do, come up with our own marketing strategy depending on which artist, which region that we're talking about. So it's kind of hard to define it as a one strategy, but these five core values that we try to live by and basically that's the bottom line of our marketing strategy. >> Okay, and what does familism means? >> So what we mean by familism, familism is really has huge significance on what we do because ever since the foundation in 1998 we've been using the word family. Means whether you're an artist, whether you're an employee that work with our artists, we really value each one and one and each other. And once you are family, you are family forever. So we try to stick with, care for others. Which is basically at the heart of what we do. Right, yeah. >> And the company was actually called YG Family when it first started. >> No, it was called [FOREIGN], but it was not [CROSSTALK]. >> My mistake! [LAUGH] >> It's fine. It was not YG, but it was soon after we became YG Entertainment. >> Okay. >> Yeah. >> Okay. >> Okay, what is your global marketing strategy? >> I mean, now, if you look at it, everything that a person does, or a company does, has global impact. So, I guess, what we can say is we try to utilize our online slash social network service as much as possible. And that was the reason why I'm proud to say that we were the first pioneer when it comes to YouTube channel. When no one else was doing it we created our own account unloading our videos, our contents there. And we also started our Facebook page for our artists at an early stage. So our global strategy is to utilize social networking service as much as possible. But we also try to partner with local market leader in each region. So for Japan, we worked with Avex which is a recording label slash management company that has been there for a long time. And in China, last November, we formed the partnership with company called 10 Cent, which owns QQ music platform, WeChat, and other humongous, I guess, platform. So, we tried to go with end obviously in the United States. We partnered with Scooter Braun Project, who manages Justin Bieber, Ariana Grande, and so on, and also Universal Music Group. So, I guess our goal is just to try to utilize social media as much as possible, but also at the same time partner with local partners there that has a huge impact to the market. >> Right, you mentioned Japan, you mentioned China, you mentioned the U.S. but, your global reach is much beyond that, right? >> Yeah so, I mean, like I said, everything we do has global implication and we do have each local say for Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, we have a local distributor. That we basically sign licensing deal, and it differs based on which country we're talking about. So, as far as target goes, we don't try to target, like, this album is for this country only, or this content, we're going to go for China only. Obviously, we try to localize each product, that's why our artists when they go to Japan, they record same song but in Japanese language. In China too, like Psy recently recorded the song called Father. >> Right. >> He did a remake of it in Chinese lyrics. >> Right. >> So we try to localize it but as far as company slash like corporate marketing strategy goes when we do something is all global >> And we don't just say this is for this market only. It's basically global. >> Okay, you mentioned Psy. You managed Psy and our viewers are dying to know about Gangnam Style. You were able to make it such a viral hit. So what where some of the specifics of your strategy for launching Gangnam Style? >> So basically Psy's been doing this, people need to know that. He's, before Gangnam Style, it's not like he was a rookie, he was doing it for 12 years. >> He's not an overnight sensation. >> Yeah, he's been doing it for 12 years. He was selling out his arena show here. He was basically, sold a lot of albums here, and he was known as king of concert. And then I can speak on behalf of him because I was there overhearing the interviews. So when Gangnam Style, before he came out, the country was heading in a economy recession and he just wanted to come up with the music and the video that's just fun. It's just like simple, straightforward fun and that's not too serious. So he basically come up with the music. He produces his own music. So he wrote the track, he produce music, and he also sort of co-directed the video. And then, he just put it out and YG as a company, we had a YouTube channel that we utilize it. And when we uploaded it, it was a matter of time that influential celebrities like Robbie Williams from UK, Tom Cruise from the states, they all immediately noticed it. >> [LAUGH] >> And Scooter Braun who now co-manages Psy in Seattle, he saw it online and he immediately called us and hey, come over to L.A. let's have a meeting. And once he signed him and you know, we start promoting together in the U.S., U.K., you know it just became like humongous probably nothing like that ever happen >> Right. >> I'm confident to say >> Right, right >> But yeah. >> And when we think about it it's a song in Korean, about Korean. >> Right. >> And yet, it resonated so strongly >> Right. >> No time to read it. >> Right. >> Was that expected? And what do you think was sort of the global appeal of that song? >> Well, we had a lot of extra discussion about it. Every time we dinner, we'd talk about it, how it became so big. Well, you're right, that song is in Korean and that song yet was huge everywhere. But if you notice it, that song has some catch phrase that every, regardless of your nationality, that people use it, like, sexy lady, style. Those are English that are used by everyone. And I think that those two words are really key to its success. And, it was just easy to, like, sing along, dance along, and I think that was one of the main reasons why although it was in Korean. And also you cannot talk about Gangnam Style without choreography. So dance was just simple sort of really observe, but it was still fun. And then anyone from age three through age 80 could have just danced like Psy did so I think it was a combo of few lyrics and dance move too. >> And him appearing on Ellen Degeneres and SNL that helped did it not. >> I mean that was just like epic. Like, I was there, obviously I was on tour with him everywhere. He actually appeared, he made two appearance at Ellen. One with Brittany Spears, he made a cameo, and one by himself. >> And she couldn't dance. >> No, because she was wearing a red, sort of like, Chinese dress so like, I understand and she had no idea he's coming out so you'll be the same too. LIke if someone comes up, hey, can you dance? [LAUGH] It's hard to dance. So yeah, so that was huge. So what happened is like U.S. is so driven by TV programs so when you are in it, it gets noticed by few million people easily. And they immediately go to YouTube or they go to iTunes and buy the track, and listen to the track. So it was huge and that was definitely the moment where this thing really got lifted up. >> Okay, and it was epic as you said, example of viral marketing. >> Right. >> Viral marketing doesn't always work. It can be a hit or miss proposition so. >> Right. >> How do you make something really viral? >> I think making something viral is really hard like you said. It's really hard. People have to genuinely like it. Like, you can try so much, it's like, I think this is going to be viral, there's a formula. No, I don't think there's any formula for being viral. But I think it has to be just like simple. Easy to understand. >> Mm. >> And it just has to be fun. >> Right. >> Like if there's any one that says there's a formula for being viral I'd think that person is saying something wrong. >> [LAUGH] >> And for Psy and like other YG contents that have gone viral I just think that it was mostly because you know they were having fun. >> Right. >> You know and just try to you know understand what people like and that was the main part. >> Right, so there has to be this connection that you wanted to make it through there. I mean, and they want to make it through their own. >> Right, right, right. So yeah, so something viral, it's more like a phenomenon like it has to come naturally. I don't think it can come out, it has to be organic. Not like artificial or manufactured. So and for Psy's case, he created something that went just huge viral. Which was great. >> Let's talk about YG as a brand. >> Mm-hm. >> So, what is YG's branding strategy? Do they have specific ways in which they want to brand itself? >> Right, I guess we, as a wiser, I think what we try to do is, our core brand is basically, are based on artists. >> Okay. >> They are the face of our company. That's what we represent. And obviously, Big Bang, 21, Psy, CL, Winner Icon, they're all the brand image. But, what we, as a company, try to do, is use that talent into multiple use. It's called a one source multi-use strategy. So, we try to come up with a business line, say for example, cosmetic business. >> Right. >> Using YG's brand name, which has mass appeal to age 10 to 30. So we try to use that, the core of our business is music and talent, but using that we try to do synergized with cosmetic, high level fashion brand, hologram and merchandise, concert endorsement. So that's, I'll say that's our strategy to use it for multiple use. >> Right, and I read that you're collaborating with LVMH. >> Right. >> So what is the motivation for that? >> I mean. >> In terms of the branding strategy? >> Yeah, so basically, LVMH has, as you know, like countless number of brands that they have. And I'm sure they've probably felt that with the relevance and impact of YG as a company and each artist that we managed, they felt that they could enhance their value to their customer. And help them shape their brand image in Asia regions and overseas as well. So what we're trying to do now it's been six to eight months since we sign the deal with them if they made an investment on us. We're basically exploring various opportunities, what we can do together. And we're still at the beginning stage and we're trying to come up with the right, we just don't want to do something this because we have do. So there has been, at corporate level, a lot of scenario discussions and I have no doubt that we and LVMH could come up with something that's going to enhance I guess create a value for both sides. And it's going to be win win situation for both sides. >> Fascinating, it seems like you're transcending beyond just being an entertainment brand. It's almost like being in a lifestyle brand. >> Right, well you're absolutely right that YG is a lifestyle company now because like I said, the music is at the core of what we do. But music affects so many people and it touches upon almost everyone's daily life. I'm almost confident to say that there's no one that does not listen to music on at least once a day. So because music affects so many people in so many part of our lifetime, it also has implication on other lifestyle. And I feel like whether it's going to concert, go and watch a movie, you know, that there's always music element involved. And I think it's only natural that YG whose core business is music also expands into lifestyle, other areas of lifestyle. >> And you mentioned hologram concerts, so are you embracing high technology as well in terms of how to deliver content? >> Right, yeah. I mean, technology is an inevitable link to what we try to do. And when it comes to hologram obviously we can utilize, it goes back to one source multi-use because when we do the concert and not everybody can come to watch it because for geographic reason. And once we put on a hologram recording, put it in a hologram theater, those people in say Singapore who couldn't come to Big Bang's Korean concert, they can just simply go to theater and watch it. So, I think technology definitely enhances what we do and that's an important part of what we do. And we always try to stay ahead of it and try to be a pioneer in adapting to new technology. And that has been our motive since foundation. >> Okay, finally YG is part of the K-pop- >> Right. >> Explosion that we've had in terms of popularity- >> Right. >> Especially in Asia and maybe beyond. So, what do you think has been YG's role and that sort explosion of K-Pop popularity and is Korea and Asia still part of the branding of YG? >> Yeah, in Korea, Asia, like I say, we don't want to limit, restrict ourself in certain regions. But we are Korean company and obviously we have huge followings in Asia, that's our root. But yeah, I believe YG played a big part if not the biggest part in spreading the Korean music. This is a music. I don't think music has a territory. We've played this part since 1998, our inception, and that's partly because, a lot has to do with what we value. What our founder, what he values, which is best quality product. We don't just release something just because we feel like we know. We always seek for perfection and that's what Stands for and we try to come up with the best line of product for the consumers and audiences. And that has played a big part in making us who we are and I have no doubt that down the road, our impact will be bigger if not. So yeah, I think YG played a big part. >> Thank you very much. >> Thank you. >> Thank you for your time. >> You did great. >> Thank you.