Bruno Mars is set to return to the top 10 of the Billboard 200 albums chart, thanks to his Super Bowl halftime performance on Sunday, Feb. 2.
According to estimates from industry sources, the entertainer’s latest album, “Unorthodox Jukebox,” sold perhaps 40,000 copies in the week ending Feb. 2. That would represent a 164% gain compared to the previous week, when it sold 15,000, according to Nielsen SoundScan.
The album’s official sales figures, as tabulated by SoundScan, will be released on Wednesday, Feb. 5 (the same day as when the new Billboard 200 chart’s top 10 will be unveiled).
If “Unorthodox” returns to the top 10 with 40,000, it will mark the album’s first visit to the top 10 since the Billboard 200 chart dated Sept. 14, 2013, and its best sales week since March of 2013.
“Unorthodox Jukebox” was already aiming to sell around 19,000 in the week ending Feb. 2, thanks in part to Mars’ exposure at last week’s Grammy Awards (Jan. 26). Mars was presented the award for best pop vocal album on the Grammys, but did not perform on the show. (He got additional screen time from his nominations in other categories — like record of the year and song of the year — though he didn’t win those races.)
According to Fox, who cite Nielsen data, Mars’ halftime show attracted the largest audience in the history of the Super Bowl, with 115.3 million viewers. That figure surpasses the prior record of 114 million set by Madonna two years ago. The big game drew 111.5 million TV viewers, down from the 109 million that tuned in a year ago (February 3, 2013).
Last year, Beyonce headlined the Super Bowl halftime show (110.8 million), where she was briefly joined by her Destiny’s Child group members Kelly Rowland and Michelle Williams. Unlike Mars, Beyonce didn’t have a current album riding high on the charts at the time.
In the week ending February 3, 2013, Beyonce saw her most recent album, 2011’s “4,” re-enter the Billboard 200 at No. 100 with 4,000 sold (up 123%). The following week — after a full week of sales impact was felt from the game — the album climbed to No. 79 with 6,000 (up 59%).
The impact of the Super Bowl on Mars’ music sales — and on the Billboard charts — will be unique compared to all other halftime headliners in the modern era of Super Bowl halftime entertainment.
Since 1993, when Michael Jackson headlined the halftime festivities, the main performer on the show has generally been an act with a fairly deep catalog of albums and songs. Mars, however, has only released two albums — “Unorthodox Jukebox” (released in 2012) and “Doo-Wops & Hooligans” (2010).
Thus, all of the sales and chart impact felt by Mars will be concentrated on just those two albums (and their respective singles). Unlike previous years, where everyone from Beyonce and Madonna to Paul McCartney and Bruce Springsteen saw their post-Super Bowl chart impact spread across multiple albums and songs.