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- Analysis of “Gangnam style” using 5Ws model in integrated marketing communications planning process.

- Communications content adding value to consumers of Psy’s music and impact on the success of the video.

- Explanation of significance of the service encounter.

- Analysis of managerial implications.

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1. Analysis of “Gangnam style” using 5Ws model in integrated marketing communications planning process. 

Who: The record label YG Entertainment build the foundation strongly so that Psy’s music video may reach maximum number of channels. YG Entertainment spent a lot of time in setting up partnership with different players in the music industry who are influential enough. It has to be noted that all this was done way before the music video was launched. Planning and implementation of integrated strategy can therefore, be regarded as one of the significant reasons behind explosive exposure of the “Gangnam Style” music video. Marketing strategy of promoting Psy’s music video highlighted that traditional marketing method used between the manufacturer and consumer needs to be changed (Hackley, 2018). The marketing team intentionally dropped the idea of copyright that can easily enable people to come up with their own online parodies. That was another remarkable marketing strategy to promote Gangnam style on the global platform. More than 668 individuals associated with YG Entertainment gave their full effort and potential towards making “Gangnam Style” an intentional music video and also to reach out to billions of viewers. 

What: The advertisement policy to promote the song on online platform followed by YG Entertainment made the music video Gangnam style famous way before it was launched. It is remarkable as the music video that is completely in Korean language got such a level of popularity among the viewers. The video was launched on various social media platforms like youtube, where it was recorded as an instant hit. Another tactic that helped to garner popularity was the choreography that denotes invisible horse dance. Instead of relying on the internal team for choreography Psy invited for suggestions from various dance communities in Korea. These suggestions were further developed to create the iconic dance step that helped in making the music video more popular. The music accompanied with the repetitive use of the word gangnam matched perfectly with the electric dance genre.   

How: Catchy tune along with quirky moves helped Gangnam style garner much integrated popularity. Psy is among famous K-Pop artists who do not fit in the pretty face mold criteria like other artists from the same genre. In spite of this, his attitude and appearance made fun of how a common man is fantasizing about life in a relevantly fast moving lane. Use of anti-materialism theme during the time of global recession helped in broadening the appeal of the song. Flashy visuals from beginning to end, where Psy appears in various colorful costumes can be referred to as another appealing component for viewers. Viewers were hardly left with any opportunity to get bored. The usage of horse stable, parks, public buses as well as public baths have used to grab the attention of the locals. The video moreover, made use of the LGBT community in order to win hearts of Netizens (Lewis et al. 2017). LGBT fans in turn, understood the intended message of supporting them. Night clubs where this music video of Psy have been shot depicts or reveals about bars that welcome LGBT in Seoul. 

Where: Gangnam is a district in Seoul, which is famous for its ritzy lifestyle. In the music video, fantasy of a common man is shown in an upscale locality of Gangnam. Most of the portions of the video is shot in Gangnam so that globally it can be presented to showcase the diverse glitz of the locality. 

When: The song was launched in July 2012 worldwide. It is remarkable that the entire song was shot in 48 hours. It took four month to break all previous records set by any music video. 

2. Communications content adding value to consumers of Psy’s music and impact on the success of the video

Though the music video seems funny in its appeal however, it carries a message within it. The song focuses on the anti materialism theme by making fun of men who at the time of recession are fantasizing to be part of the elite. The time period of recession along with its theme, the song appealed to a wide spread mass. The usage of humor to portray the message embedded within the music video helped to gather much more popularity among the masses (Howard, 2015). Psy under K-Pop style gathered much more popularity, as it is a unique style in itself. K-pop as popularly known basically it is Korean-pop that is innovative and gathered popularity in no time due to its uniqueness. The focus of the song was to portray the elite lifestyle of gangnam globally. In other words it can be said it was to showcase the prominent culture of korea. The invisible pony dance gathered much attention of the audience, that further encouraged many brands to feature Psy’s dance style as their marketing strategy.

The marketing strategy that started way before launch of the music video included many events. For instance, there are few events that were organised in night clubs where the song was played to create much more appeal among the people. Will.i.am, the American rapper was also approached as part of the promotional strategy. Other than that, websites like AllKpop.com was also approached that is responsible for delivering minute breaking news and presents exclusive coverage. Remarkably beyond all these factors Psy’s body language made the video more appealing and entertaining. Though the language of the video is Korea still it did not hampered the popularity of the song that can be regarded as a path breaker. For reaching out to much more number of people the YG Entertainment label strategically did not opted for copyright (Lunney, 2017). On a global level many artists go for license for their songs that entitles them to earn profits from all official downloads. On the other hand this policy can not be considered helpful in terms of wider publicity. In the long run this hampers the number of people it approaches to. To be more popular Psy created his own style.  


Marketing is a process of advertising products in order to increase sales. The business organizations and the entertainment industries of these days are continuously evolving their marketing style in order to satisfy varying demands of audiences. The industries are applying the techniques of the relationship marketing and service marketing. Service marketing is intangible type of marketing where the marketing manager has to connect to benefits of services with the relevant ideas and imageries. Relationship marketing on the other hand, is the aspect of focusing on long-term engagement of customers for maintaining continuous promotion and ongoing business. 

This study has emphasized on two significant marketing stages of YG Entertainment namely, backstage and front stage. Significance of service counter as well as analysis of managerial implications has also been discussed.

1. Flowchart

Service management is all about managing service level agreements with external service providers as well as with customers or end users. However, there are certain procedures or operations that need to be kept out of sight from end users and are referred to as backstage (Herhausen et al. 2017). Therefore, for an entertainment company like YG Entertainment it is essential to manage both backstage as well as front stage. Flowchart is a type of diagram or rather step-by-step approach which enables continuous workflow or flow of processes. Steps or flowcharts by which the operations of both backstage and front stage operations are done within YG Entertainment are as follows:


The YG Entertainment of South Korea has to maintain its backstage functions in order to present the successful shows. All the functions of the backstage are utmost important for bringing the success in the front stage. Staffs of the backstage have to keep an eye on every little detail for performing tasks without any fault. First, they have to give details of the backstage, especially a rough map to artists and other workers so as to reduce the chances of confusion. According to the ideas of Ybema and Horvers (2017), workers and artists can get in-depth knowledge of instruments and other required materials after receiving this. Backstage staffs of the South Korean entertainment industry also have to describe allocation of rooms for artists, which can be able to resist the argumentative situations among the performers. Volunteers are also assigned to different artists during events organized by YG Entertainment. These volunteers are responsible for guiding artists or singers in the best possible way, starting from feeling comfortable, relaxed to give an outstanding performance on stage (Goretzki and Messner, 2019). 

The backstage staffs of YG Entertainment have to play the role of makeup artists also. The workers have to apply the make ups on the faces of the performers carefully (Hylton and Lawrence, 2016). Appropriate makeup of an artist is essential to attract attention of audiences. At the same time, a performer also gets the enthusiasm of providing high level of performances when the makeover is suitable and comfortable. Backstage staffs of YG Entertainment are also responsible for making roster of the entire show, especially when it comes to event management. This is because the distribution of schedule of the show assures better coordination, resulting in positive feedback from audiences. 

image 1.jpg.png


Figure 1: Flowchart of backstage of YG Entertainment

(Source: Inspired from the ideas of Frisén, 2017)

Front stage

The technique of attracting views of Koreans as well as people from all over the globe is paramount for YG entertainment of South Korea. Role of a performer or artist is significant when it comes to front stage as he or she is the person to represent the organization in front of audiences. According to the ideas of Treré (2015), workers of front stage are responsible for supervising tangible as well as intangible factors. For instance, front stage staffs are required to keep an eye on light and sound systems installed within the stage. Proper lighting and sound system can provide performers with the opportunity of high level of performance. Hence, the YG Entertainment can achieve huge profit by presenting a hit show. Staff of front stage is moreover, required to maintain proper sitting arrangements for the audiences in order to avoid chaos (Wu et al. 2015). 

They also need to provide an emergency gate for the security purpose of the audiences and the performers. YG Entertainment mainly focuses on trends prevalent amongst teenagers therefore; it is mandate for performers to maintain connection with audiences. The artists are required to ensure that audiences are enjoying and this can be achieved only when performers are interacting with audiences. Audiences when provided with the opportunity to sing with the performers feel much more energetic to attend further event conducted by the event management firm (Hylton and Lawrence, 2016). Communication of performers with audiences is an indication of managing commercial relationships. The artists also have to provide opportunities to audiences of asking questions or sharing thoughts. Thus, the service provider is the performer here and the service management can bring a world class recognition for the entertainment industry. Hence, a positive communication can be developed between artists and audiences that can bring enormous profit. 

image 2.png


Figure 2: Flowchart of front stage of YG Entertainment

(Source: According to the ideas of Fähnrich et al. 2015)

2. Explanation of significance of the service encounter 

From the point of view of the customers service encounters can be regarded as a tool to create the most vivid impressions. These moments can be termed as the “moment of truth”. During service encounters the customers interact with respective company for availing their services. Prime focus of YG Entertainment is to deliver the best possible performance to their respective audience. Service encounter builds foundation of service quality that will be provided from the company’s end. YG Entertainment which deals with varied K-Pop artists, quality of service is of utmost priority. According to Parc and Kawashima, (2018) the K-pop culture did not became popular by accident, though it was a planned strategy in part of YG Entertainment that popularized it on a global scale. The company believes in simplified operations along with predetermined services. And for this, the dedicated marketing and operations team strategically negate their operations to ensure valued experience for their audience and stakeholders. The company is focused to provide audience with innovative mode of entertainment. The pop culture promoted by YG Entertainment further ensured garnering popularity among the audience (Kim, 2019). Unique style presented in K-Pop music helped the company to gain more profit share in the entertainment market. Mostly based on pop music YG Entertainment ensure more involvement of the teenagers. K-pop music enabled the company to reach out to global platform and to make the company reach the ranking of number two among its competitors. Following are a few of the service encounter significance in respect of YG Entertainment:

Creating initial impression

The company believes in creating a remarkable impression among its audience. The music entertainment industry recorded a boost with the introduction of K-Pop. YG Entertainment came up with the idea of partnerships so that it can reach out to diversified audience. The company gathered much popularity in 2012 with the launch of “Gangnam style” where LGBT community has also been taken into consideration (Kwon, 2016). 

Providing value

YG entertainment provides equal importance to all of its events and launches. The audience is always provided with utmost importance as they are considered as the decisive factors for any event. Fulfilling the requirements of the audience as well as the stakeholders helps the company grow further. 

Overseas viewers 

It is the sole responsibility of the company to cross checks the content available on various online platforms. The content must be in accordance to the viewership on the global platform. Here the content must not hamper the sentiments of the respective viewers or audience. The content being entertaining in nature also promotes the Korean culture. 

Quality assurance

K-pop culture that is solely responsible for gathering popularity for YG Entertainment has evolved as a unique style. The company is associated with many K-pop artists who work hard to ensure the quality to be delivered to their audience. The quality further assures the satisfaction of the stakeholders as well. To ensure the quality YG Entertainment prepares own artists from a young age under their training programs.

3. Analysis of managerial implications

The involvement of individual manager of YG entertainment and event manager has helped in increasing the stock value and also propose innovative approach for every performance. Proper coordination among members of front stage and backstage members is the resultant outcome from inclusion of managerial design to acquire profit and popularity in South Korean and international industry for entertainment. 


The involvement of effective management and supervisors has helped YG entertainment to acquire local and international fan base. In order to make sure all the segments of music are covered, YG entertainment released necessary shows and albums for specific group of individuals. This particular approach is a necessary factor in retaining potential fan base but also reign over popularity on online platform. 

Innovative approach

The survival of YG entertainment is depended upon innovative techniques for acquiring profitable growth in K-pop industry. It has been highlighted by Brunner and Ostermaier (2019) that innovation allows operational function to deliver products and services that are in demand and also sustain growth of the company. The opinion of author can be considered to have resonance with YG entertainment as they utilize online platform and modified approach to satisfy their fan base. It cannot be denied that social media allows entertainment organization to showcase notification about events and future planning with any artist. Similar practices are also being replicated by YG entertainment as they have their own face book and YouTube account. This further allows them to communicate and resolve any queries of fan.  

Events for young enthusiast

The organization of events such as audition and local competition is one of the major drivers of YG entertainment to occupy Korean market. It does not only inspire young artists to pursue their dreams in entertainment industry but also interact with various individual celebrities. As per the knowledge of Meglio et al. (2017) inspiration for young enthusiast is relevant for any organization to increase their footprint in the market. The statement of author has been reflected in YG entertainment as audition for young artist helps them to increase fan base and also arrange performance in international countries. 

Organizational decisions

The management decision of YG entertainment has been progressed toward growth due to the involvement of international event. It has also made YG entertainment capable of undertaking complicated decision regarding financial and inclusion of other artist. Improvement in organizational capabilities does not only help YG entertainment to score growth in Korean industry but also open up the possibility of investing into international prospects. 

Inclusion of new members for effective growth

YG entertainment has been into innovative approach which allows them to include new management members. In order to ensure necessary capabilities are put to use, advice from young members are taken to retain their fan base through new songs and music videos. It has become necessary for entertainment companies to make sure all the operational objectives are being met without suffering major financial loss. Such practices are also recommended to provide higher income potential to individual band members that are involved with YG entertainment.  


From discussions made above, it can be concluded that the maintenance of the front stage and backstage is a job full of responsibility. Operations that are conducted in these two significant stages are paramount and require active participation of the entire event management team. Workers of both front and back stages have to go through multitasking in order to ensure receiving positive feedback and overall success of the organization. Volunteers associated with the entertainment industry are allocated with the responsibility to provide security. They also have to check every single person before the beginning of the show in order to avoid any dangerous incidents. Tight security and increasing reliability on the industry can give opportunities of signing more performers; hence, a high level of business profit can be incurred with recognition of a brand.

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