Inside E-commerce

From K-pop star to entrepreneur: Former Girls' Generation member shares her new plans

Key Points
  • South Korean pop-star Jessica Jung might be best known for being a former member of K-pop band Girls' Generation, but she's now branched into the business world as the owner of her own fashion label, Blanc & Eclare.
  • Jung said it can sometimes be challenging to be a social media influencer, especially when looking for a break from work. "Social media is so fast-paced that you just need to kind of keep up."
South Korean pop star Jessica Jung attends the opening ceremony and screening of "The Dead Don't Die" during the 72nd annual Cannes Film Festival on May 14, 2019 in Cannes, France.
Dominique Charriau | WireImage | Getty Images

South Korean pop-star Jessica Jung might be best known for being a former member of K-pop band Girls' Generation, but she's now branched into the business world as the owner of her own fashion label, Blanc & Eclare.

Describing herself as an "explorer," the 32-year-old singer-turned-entrepreneur said the transition from entertainment to fashion was "natural," adding that she "had a great following in the fashion world."

With over 9.9 million Instagram followers to her name, being a social media influencer proved to be a full-time commitment.

Her secret?

"You have to be genuine, and you have to have a character for yourself. Then there's a connection that's made between you and your followers. That's how it grows," she told CNBC's Inside E-commerce.

Jung gave her fans credit for her success as well. "I'm very lucky because my career actually started in an era where social media just began setting its roots. My fans and I started building it together."

Social media influencer

Jung said it can be challenging at times, especially when looking for a break from work. "Social media is so fast-paced that you just need to kind of keep up."

When it comes to being the face of a brand, maintaining a personal connection with followers is crucial for Jung, who was named global brand ambassador for cosmetics company Revlon in 2020.

VIDEO2:5202:52
Social media 'like' button can cause insecurities, says ex-Girls Generation member Jessica Jung

She said a good mix of branded content and personal content on social media helps.

"If I have branded content that I need to post, I post that. Then I would definitely post a couple of genuine daily activities and daily fashion, things that my fans and my followers would really want to see," Jung said.

According to a "Social Salary Calculator" by music licensing platform Lickd.co, social media influencers with over 100,000 followers on Instagram can typically earn over $4,000 per Instagram post.

You have to be genuine, and you have to have a character for yourself. Then there's a connection that's made between you and your followers.
Jessica Jung
former member of K-pop band Girls' Generation

Jung has her concerns about social media as well.

"It can cause some insecurities for people," she said referring to the "like" button on social media platforms. "I've seen it happen to a lot of people around me."

Life during the pandemic

As for her life during the pandemic, Jung said that her travelling lifestyle has been put on hold and she is now based in South Korea.

"I used to constantly be traveling and I was back in Korea to just pack my things and leave again. But now I'm here — full time," Jung said.

This change has led to the launch of her first Seoul flagship store for Blanc & Eclare in January 2021, a luxury fashion brand which sells classic wear and accessories, like sunglasses, for women. She also opened her own restaurant, Clareau, on the second floor of the flagship store, which serves contemporary cuisine.

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K-pop star Jessica Jung hopes to expand Blanc & Eclare across Asia and America

Despite not being able to travel as much as before, she has enjoyed being in South Korea. "I didn't think that I would like it this much, but I actually love it because I didn't know I missed home this much. I had time to take care of myself — mentally and physically."

Jung will be releasing new singles throughout the year that will lead to an album, something that was initially delayed due to Covid-19.

As for other projects, she confirmed with CNBC that a new season of her reality show with her sister Krystal of K-pop girl group f(x) will air in late September.

Jung said her book "Bright," a sequel to her New York Times' Bestseller "Shine," is set to be released mid-2022.