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Billboard Global Charts at One Year: How Video Streaming Helped Power the Charts

Official music videos on YouTube and viral clips on TikTok have helped power the first year of Billboard's global charts. 

One year after the launch of the Billboard Global 200 and Billboard Global Excl. U.S. charts, we’re recapping the biggest hits, newest names and more from around the world with Billboard and MRC Data’s Global Music and Chart Report: A Year in Review.

The two charts collate data from more than 200 international territories, with the Global 200 based on worldwide digital sales and official audio and video streaming and Global Excl. U.S. excluding U.S. data.

The new Billboard & MRC Data report, among other findings, dives deep into a pocket of songs that have been lifted onto the global charts by the power of video streaming.

Notable videos such as Lil Nas X’s “Montero (Call Me By Your Name),” Future’s “Life Is Good” featuring Drake, and, a chart hit in its own right, Pinkfong’s “Baby Shark” have each racked up massive views online, helping these songs heighten and extend their global chart runs.

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Meanwhile around the world, video streaming helps diversify the charts, specifically with hits sprinkled throughout Asia.

Japan and South Korea make up for the bulk of representation for Asian artists, although certain Indian acts have found success bolstered by official music videos for their charting hits. Jubin Nautiyal’s “Lut Gaye,” featuring Emraan Hashmi, climbed to No. 23 on the Global Excl. U.S. survey in April. But throughout the Hindi-language track’s chart run, it was the most or second-most streamed video in the world, despite never cracking the top 20 of the Global Excl. U.S. list or the top 40 of the Global 200.

Similar stories go for B Praak’s “Filhaal 2: Mohabbat” and “Baariah Ki Jaaye,” both of which ranked among the top five videos for every week they charted, peaking at Nos. 68 and 134, respectively, on the Global Excl. U.S. chart.

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One viewing of the aforementioned Bollywood-inspired videos shows why audiences are driven in droves to video rather than audio. They all showcase advanced choreography, set design, costuming and cinematography that resemble short films rather than typical promotional clips. And despite a worldwide halt to film production due to COVID-19, a tie-in with mega-popular Bollywood films never hurts.

It’s not just official music videos that help power the Billboard global charts. Short-form video, primarily trending in every direction on TikTok, helps fuel interest beyond the limits of social media. Though views on TikTok don’t count directly toward the charts, sales and streams regularly spike once a dance trend or sound clip goes viral on the app, pushing songs new and old onto the charts. From Fleetwood Mac to Kali Uchis, video virality has led to some of the year’s biggest hits, such as Måneskin’s “Beggin’ ” and Nathan Evans’ “Wellerman.”

For a full dive into some of the biggest music videos and trendiest TikTok hits, as well as more highlights from the first year of the global charts, download the full (and free) Global Music and Chart Report: A Year in Review.