Beyoncé breaks all digital music records with unmarketed surprise album

By Christopher Ratcliff

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from Posts from the Econsultancy blog.

Beyoncé’s self-titled new album, Beyoncé (I feel like I didn’t really need to say that), has destroyed the internet this weekend in a pre-Christmas gamble which has seen the ex-Child of Destiny installed as the new monarch of pop.

Picking the penultimate weekend before Christmas goes against all traditional new album release logic. Mid-November to Mid-January is a barren wasteland of Susan Boyle, greatest hits compilations and swing albums by nice young men your mum likes. Nobody good releases new music at this time of year. Nobody.

But then the Carter family rarely have been ones to stick with traditional record release logic, just look at Jay-Z who released his last album Magna Carta Holy Grail through a mobile app earlier in the year. (Read more about that insix musicians embracing app technology)

Beyoncé’s fifth album was released last Friday exclusively on iTunes without any promotional marketing whatsoever. Here’s some stats from the weekend courtesy of Consequence of Sound: weekend:

  • Beyoncé is iTunes fastest selling album ever.
  • It sold 828,773 copies in three days. (The previous record was Justin Timberlake’s 20/20 Experience which sold 580,000)
  • The album went to number one in the iTunes chart in 104 countries (out of a possible 119)
  • Beyoncé led to the largest full-priced digital album sales week ever. (Lady Gaga’s Born This Way was the previous holder with 662,000 and even that number was enhanced thanks to an Amazon promotion that sold the album for 99 cents)
  • There were 1.2 million tweets about the album within 24 hours of its release.
  • On Facebook, mentions of Beyoncé spiked more than 1,300% mere hours after the album’s release.

Here’s a picture of Beyoncé riding a golden bicycle to celebrate.

How did Beyoncé achieve this?

For a start Beyoncé has mimicked the element of surprise that other, far less mainstream, artists have utilised to great notoriety. Radiohead, Death Grips and My Bloody Valentine have all released albums from seemingly out of nowhere. It’s generates a sudden rush of publicity, andthe release can be controlled in the most agile way; exploiting any window of opportunity or not if a more news-worthy event suddenly gets in the way.

The surprise album release is not how mega pop superstars like Beyoncé are meant to do it though.

Katy Perry, Miley Cyrus and Lady Gaga each released a new album this year and each one had multiple months of single …read more

Source: Donkeyrock_BlurBlog

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