Taylor Swift Sales: Why Doing So Well?

Friday, November 21, 2008

I was reading through a few news articles and came across an article on the sales numbers for Taylor Swift's new album "Fearless." I thought it may had been a mis-print or something.

Here we go, and these aren't mis-types...

Taylor Swift in the first week of the release of "Fearless" sold 592,304 copies. Her debut self-titled album sold 27,800 copies last week. That album was released October 24, 2006 and still remains in the top 5 this week, making it the 108th week for the album being on Billboard's Top Country Album Chart.

According to All About Country, 55.8% of all country music albums bought last week had Taylor Swift's name on the cover.

Rascal Flatts is ranked #2 last week in country sales with 38,812 copies. That makes them 553,492 copies less than Swift.

Looking at all album sales, David Archuleta came in at number 2. He sold 183,000 copies. Doesn't even come close to Taylor Swift.

CMA Week always helps out the sales, this year was no different, sales were up 26.7%... not bad at all. Over 1.1 million albums were sold, again, 592,000 of those were Taylor Swift's new album.

Debut album is over 3x Platinum. Her new release is gold in 1 week!

Now, this is excellent sales, by far, by don't believe it is any major record breaking event. My question is why is Taylor Swift so very popular? I've asked this question before in my writings, but it still comes up in my head every time I heard about her sales and chart positioning. I mean demographics of her target audience is one thing, but, to begin a new album with over 592,000 sold and her first CD out over 2 years ago is still selling like it just came out there is something more going on that has her selling so well.

The answer to it all is... well, I don't know what exactly it is. It must be a combination of so many things. Some of them in the control of her management, record label, publicity, her talent and skill, but, some of it I think has to do with so many things out of her direct control. Timing, demographical interest, and I'm sure many other factors.

Here are some of the reasons I think she is doing so well. 

1) Her vocals and music itself are common and pop-music influenced country music.  She is country, but I wouldn't go as far as saying traditional country.  Its pop-country, just like so very many of our "country" artists of the current days.  The sound of Taylor Swift's songs appeal to the pop-music style of music as well as our country fans, for the most part.  Her talent in itself is enough to make her a very successful artist.

2) Taylor Swift has had a strong Internet presence.  Her MySpace page has been up since August 0f 2005.  That's a year before even her debut album was released. As of this afternoon, Taylor has 978,387 "friends" on MySpace.  That page is kept updated and keeps the younger generation hooked on her music, but also her life and what she is really like.  Everyone these days have Myspace, but Swift came in on the ground floor and uses that page perfectly.  Its not just MySpace of course.  Her official web page is updated nicely as well.  It is designed in a way to keep the younger ones wanting to come back, but as well is informative for those they are there for information.

3) I think this third point is the biggest reason she does so well.  Her age, her looks, and her life style makes her so marketable.  Younger females are always looking for a role-model.  Taylor Swift is a role-model that the parent's of the children wanting to look up to her can approve of. She carries her self very well in public, very down-to-Earth, she dresses appropriate, she is beautiful, yet not a over-the-top concentration on the way she looks.  Always I feel a "be yourself" message from Taylor Swift. 

Why do you think Taylor Swift sales are so high?  Leave a comment and I'll share it here...

Photo Credit: Taylor Swift on the CMA Awards Red Carpet at “The 42nd Annual CMA Awards,” on Wednesday, Nov. 12, 2008, broadcast live from the Sommet Center in Nashville on the ABC Television Network.  Photographer: Jim Hagans / CMA


Lindsay P said...

I think you are missing one very important element- lyrical content. This girl is putting music to so many events in a young womans life. Sometimes it feels as if she has read my journal. These songs touch people in a meaningful way, and that is a quick way to sucess. Tim McGraw.. how many of us have not had some sort of memory associated to one of his songs? (Mine was Don't Take the Girl) I'd lie.. I've felt that way more times than I'd like to remember. Should have said no... well theres an anthem! So while the things you have mentioned may all contribute to the success Taylor Swift has accrewed in her short time on the country scene, I think the fact that she writes songs that touch hearts from 10 to 100 plays a significant role.

Kirk Fitzgerald said...

Thanks for the comment, and I do agree the lyrical content is such a very strong argument in why she does so well. Thanks for the comment Lindsay P.. it is appreciated.

Anonymous said...

I think she is doing well for the exact same reason as Miley Cirus and the Jonas Brothers. Kids buy music and go crazy for one of their own. The trick will be if as she grow ups will her fan base grow up with her or move on to someone new. As I think back to some of the music I bought and the posters on my wall when I was young, sometimes I wonder what the hell I was thinking, and some I'm still proud to be a fan of. Which category will Miss Swift fall into, only time will tell. I personally don't see the appeal, but I'm pretty sure I'm not the target audience either.

Anonymous said...

I know people who live in Henndersonville and they told me that Taylor Swift's dad goes to different stores and buys all of her cds. Which makes since to me because I went to Rasputin's and I saw a whole shelf of her new and old albums.