When was the last time you bought an album? For many of us, this is probably ancient history. taylor swift’s Midnight CD costs $12.99 ,$29.99 for vinyl), when you could spend less on an Apple Music subscription and listen millions instead of singing. But it begs the question: How many times do you really need to stream an album to make it worth the album sales?
Earlier the math was very simple. industry is considered 3 single sales equal to 1 album sale, So, count the number of singles sold, divide by three, then add that to the number of albums sold. Easy.
Of course, the industry itself soon changed. rapidly, As soon as digital music came to the fore. Illegal downloads prompted quick change, and Apple’s iTunes took advantage. Now, consumers not only had an easy way to purchase albums on their computers, but individual songs as well. You didn’t need to pay $10 or $20 to buy the entire CD for that one song: you could buy the song for only 99 cents.
Now, there’s only one thing more convenient than buying instant music free music, Ad-supported streaming meant that people could listen to whatever they wanted without spending a dime, as long as they read a few ads every so often. Paid subscriptions offered better quality music without advertisements for the price of one album. Whether you pay for it with money or ads, you now have access to virtually any song at all times. people still buy music, Undoubted. Vinyl sales are solid, and even CDs are flourishing, but there’s no debating that streaming is the current money maker.
How many streams equal one album sale?
To account for all the different ways people consume music today, there needs to be some standard, and that standard is the album-equivalent unit. standard As the RIAA (Record Industry Association of America) defines it Is in this type: selling an album equalize 10 songs download either Stream 1,500 Songs, This is the formula they use to determine when albums reach Gold (500,000 units), Platinum (1,000,000 units), Multi-Platinum (2,000,000 units) and Diamond (10,000,000 units).
While the RIAA was not the only one to use this standard over the years, times have changed, Billboard and Nielsen now consider the difference between paid streaming services such as Spotify and Apple Music and those at free or ad-supported levels such as Spotify. They then break down the streaming services like this: 1,250 premium audio streams, 3,750 Ad Supported Streamseither 3,750 video streams equalize an album sale,
So, the next time you watch an artist’s music video on YouTube, you’ve “bought” 1/3,750 of an album for them. When you stream a track on Apple Music, that’s 1/1,250 or 1/1,500 of an album unit, depending on who’s counting.
Let’s do some math. midnight (3am version) There are 20 tracks. Moving away from Billboard’s measurement, it would require 62.5 completed listenings on paid platforms such as Apple Music to equal the sales of one album. Off the RIAA, you have to listen to it 75 times. Since the album is one hour and nine minutes long, that’s 72 or 86 hours of listening, when completed with a single $12.99 purchase. Of course, if you use an ad-supported service, it’s even longer: 187.5 listens, or over 215 hours of your time, and that’s before factoring in commercials!
It’s clear, then, why an artist like Taylor Swift would use every possible marketing tactic to get fans to buy copies of her albums. It takes someone a second to pay for a CD, but it takes tens, if not hundreds, of hours to stream a “sale”. Design Midnight as A clock that required four copies of the album to complete Meaning quadruple the sales from the most devoted fans. Why wait for up to 860 hours of streams when you can sell four albums at once?
But hey, it’s clearly working for Taylor. with Midnighttaylor swift is First musician in Billboard history to have a full Top 10 in one week, with four additional tracks in the top 20. It opened with 1.578 million equivalent album units, which while staggering, isn’t actually a record. The award goes to Adele, whose album 25 opened with 3.482 million album units.
According to this article, anti Hero is still number one, in fact a fact not lost on drake, While her new music claimed two to nine spots in the top 10, Taylor Swift’s biggest track is still winning. In an Instagram post celebrating their successes, they covered their places with emojis, while notably not covering Sam Smith and Kim Petras’ 10th-place finishes. unholy,
Drama aside, these artists know how to use these album units to push their numbers to extremes like never before. the Beatles shipped 3.2 million copies Let it be in 13 dayswhereas Taylor Swift moves three million album units worldwide Midnight’ first Weekwith more than one One billion Global streams make up that number. Whether those streams come from premium or ad-supported services, it all adds up to one very of albums.