With the release of "Journals" on Monday, Dec. 23, Justin Bieber set the online world on fire and, in turn, returns to the No. 1 spot on the Social 50 to reclaim the throne for the first time in 18 weeks.
Billboard's Social 50 chart 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 provider Next Big Sound.
Bieber’s rise back to No. 1 is fueled by a promotion blitz across all social media channels. Frequent updates promoting "Journals" and a "complete my 'Journals'" deal through iTunes on Instagram lead to a 31% rise in post likes on the platform. This positive reaction from fans was mirrored on Facebook, where a 25% rise in conversation about the artist on the platform leads to a 1.8 million new fans on the platform, a 56% increase over the previous week.
Bieber’s move to No. 1 dethrones Beyonce, who slips 1-3 after returning to the top after her surprise album was released on Dec. 13. Miley Cyrus, meanwhile, rises 3-2.
Looking to the future, the Christmas day release of Bieber's new film "Believe" as well as his enigmatic “retirement” announcement, could help him sustain momentum at No. 1 on the Social 50. However, Cyrus released her new music video for "Adore You" (on Dec. 26), the third single from her "Bangerz" album. The clip, like her two previous videos from the album, is sure to generate interest, as it features Cyrus between the sheets (literally).
Making a commendable re-entry at No. 18 is Ashley Tisdale, who returns due to the release of her new single, “You’re Always Here,” on Monday, Dec. 16. She also announced the re-launch of her official website, ashleytisdale.com, on Dec. 17. The pop star's active fan base (11.1 million followers on Twitter, 18.1 million likes on Facebook, etc.) generated enough interest in Tisdale over the week to spur the return -- her first appearance on the tally since March. She collected 483,000 new fans on Facebook last week -- a 137% change over the previous week.
Below Tisdale, John Mayer makes his Social 50 debut thanks to his new music video with Katy Perry, "Who You Love." The real life couple's clip premiered on Dec. 17, and its streaming activity helped the tune debut at No. 48 on the Billboard Hot 100. Its 8.3 million global plays towards Mayer’s name allowed for a 6% increase in weekly fan acquisition, and Mayer's Social 50 debut.
Back in the top 10, One Direction climbs a notch (5-4), as does Katy Perry (6-5). Ariana Grande dips slightly (4-6), while Justin Timberlake’s appearance on "Saturday Night Live" creates buzz that causes the pop star to ascend 11-7. Demi Lovato ascends 9-8, Eminem drops 7-9 and Shakira rises 12-10 to anchor the region.