While Walmart may still sell more music, in the eyes of record label executives Target's marketing prowess has helped the Minneapolis­-based merchant pull neck and neck with the Bentonville, Ark.-based discount store operation.

The Target circular reaches 50 million homes and generates 100 million impressions, but the most important aspect of getting an album cover into the circular means that it's a priority at the chain's stores and will be placed on either an endcap or a fixture near the checkout lane.

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