Pharrell Williams debuts on the Social 50 at No. 43, thanks to the surging popularity of his single "Happy," from the "Despicable Me 2" soundtrack. The song, which flies 26-11 on Digital Songs with 120,000 downloads sold (up 81%, according to Nielsen SoundScan), received an extra boost in publicity during the chart week ending Jan. 19: it was nominated for the Academy Award for best original song. The cut, which is gaining traction at top 40 radio, also previews Pharrell's forthcoming album.
The Social 50 ranks the most popular artists on YouTube, Vevo, Facebook, Twitter, SoundCloud, Wikipedia, Myspace and Instagram. The chart's methodology blends weekly additions of friends/fans/followers along with artist page views, song plays and reactions as measured by music analytics company Next Big Sound.
The flurry of activity around the Oscar announcement resulted in more than 237,000 new fans for Pharrell across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, a 65% increase over the previous week. It also spurred a jump in conversation about him, evidenced by a 43% jump in Twitter mentions. More than 10 million conversations were started on Facebook throughout the week about Pharrell.
Elsewhere on the Social 50, Jennifer Lopez rises 39-17 following her return as a judge on Fox's "American Idol" last week. The diva made her "Idol" return on Jan. 15 and 16.
Lopez's ascent is also aided by the debut of the official teaser video for her new single, "Same Girl," which arrived via her YouTube channel on Jan. 12.
The clip has received 1.2 million views since it was released, helping her overall channel views to climb by 1,030% over the previous week. The teaser and her "Idol" return helped Lopez accumulate 92,000 new fans on Twitter (an 11% increase from last week) and 324,000 fans on Facebook (an 85% gain).
In the week after the release of her new single "Can't Remember to Forget You" (featuring Rihanna), Shakira's steady stream of promotion sends her to the Social 50's top five (15-5). A media blitz, starting with her appearance on the cover of Glamour magazine, followed by an exclusive interview released to her Vevo channel, in which she addresses the inspiration behind the song and what it's like to work with Rihanna, spurs a 31% increase in overall chart points, led by the addition of 750,000 new fans overall.
Recapping the Social 50's entire top 10, Miley Cyrus remains at No. 1 (for a 16th nonconsecutive week), Selena Gomez rises 3-2, Rihanna rises 4-3 and Justin Bieber slides 2-4; we'll see next week how Bieber's arrest this week affects his Social 50 standing.
Ariana Grande and One Direction remain steady at Nos. 6 and 7, respectively, while Katy Perry lifts 9-8, with Beyonce in tow (11-9). Eminem holds at the Social 50's No. 10 spot.