As the 2008 Summer Olympics came to a close Aug. 24 in Beijing, the world's top athletes weren't the only ones celebrating victory. Such artists as Taylor Swift, Chris Brown and Brandi Carlile enjoyed a significant lift in sales thanks to TV song placements.

"There's no bigger stage than something as enormously powerful as the Olympics," says Dean Crutchfield, a branding expert formerly with New York-based Wolff Olins. "It's one of the biggest events in the world."

Indeed, thanks in part to the excitement generated by U.S. swimmer Michael Phelps' record eight gold medals, the first 12 days of the Beijing Olympics scored an average of 29.3 million TV viewers on NBC, a 12% increase over the first 12 days of the 2004 games in Athens, according to NBC Universal.

Thanks to that audience reach, some of the songs featured in TV commercials during the games reaped sizable sales boosts. The biggest winners were featured on AT&T's "Team USA Soundtrack," a compilation of songs to benefit U.S. Olympic athletes. AT&T, which has exclusive rights to the songs during the games, ran regular TV spots during the games advertising the soundtrack.

Five songs from the soundtrack, which was released Aug. 8, debut on this week's Billboard Hot 100 (see page 46). Swift's "Change" enters the chart at No. 10, followed by Brown's "Dreamer" (No. 16), Goo Goo Dolls' "Real" (92), Nelly's "Warrior" (96) and Colbie Caillat's "Somethin' Special" (98).

Click here to read more about how TV song placements during the 2008 Summer Olympic helped boost sales for many artists, while not having much of an impact on others.