Avril Lavigne’s global heatmap
On a global scale, Avril Lavigne was one of the biggest names of the 2000s decade. Her debut album moved nearly 20 million equivalent album sales. She has huge sales all over Asia, but how does the Canadian superstar perform all around the world?
In order to identify on which countries Lavigne performed well, the way to go is to look at data from various top sellers and compare her own results with theirs. Thus, we collected market by market YouTube statistics of 14 major artists including the Beatles, Michael Jackson, Elvis Presley, Madonna, and Queen. The sample also includes a various recent artists among which Adele, Britney Spears, Beyoncé and Eminem.
As stated inside the article Learn how to exploit YouTube Insights, the absolute number of views is irrelevant. Depending on your target audience and its YouTube usage habits, you will have very different results. Relative results do matter though. That’s why rather than comparing views numbers, we compare the share of views coming from each market for all these artists. For example, both the Beatles and Queen have over 1,6 million monthly views in Japan. Since Queen outperform the Beatles by 3 to 1 globally, that means Japan is a market 3 times more relevant for the Beatles. In conclusion, even if both have similar views there, the latter group is relatively speaking bigger there.
Once we defined the strength of each market for scale artists, we calculate their averages. To continue with our example, our scale artists register 1,60% of their global streams in Japan. Lavigne‘s count there stands at 2,39%, it means the relevance of this market is 149% (2,39%/1,60%) as high for her as for the others.
The greenest a country is, the best Lavigne performed in comparison to the scale artists. On yellow ones, she is on par with the average. Countries in orange represent weaker performances, the most red they get, the most she underperforms. Countries in white fail to appear among her personal Top 100 markets on YouTube.
We aren’t done still. An artist can record a huge chunk of his views in a few countries only, say in the US. His comparative shares in remaining countries would then underperform massively reference values. This issue is known for years in the world of statisticians. A very efficient way to avoid these outliers consists in comparing rankings instead of raw values. As a result, instead of saying that Lavigne outperforms the scale by 5.76 to 1 in Taiwan, we will say that Taiwan is the country of rank 1, the one where she performs the best relatively speaking.
The greenest a country is, the highest it is among Lavigne‘s top markets and so on until red markets.
It shouldn’t come off as a surprise that Lavigne performs so well in Asia. After all, she has moved nearly 7 million albums in the continent, with nearly 5 million coming from Japan alone – a rare feat for any artist who debuted after the year 2000. Her latest album, Avril Lavigne, also moved about 45% of its sales in Asia alone.
Taiwan is by far her strongest market. There, she outstreams scale acts by over 5 to 1. Simply impressive! Her personal Top 10 consists of 9 Asian countries, once again proving how important this continent is for Lavigne‘s career. If YouTube was available in China, there’s no doubt that her entire Top 10 would end up with Asian countries. In Taiwan, Hong Kong, Malaysia and Indonesia, she outperforms scale acts by over 3 to 1. The largest Asian market, Japan, barely misses the Top 10, ranking at #13. South Korea is easily her worst Asian market, only ranking at #72.
In Europe, the pop rock superstar has mixed results. In some countries she does quite well, such as Austria (#10), Czech Republic (#15), Slovakia (#17), Belarus (#19), Germany (#20), Lilthuania (#21), Latvia (#23), Estonia (#26), Russia (#29), Malta (#33), Slovenia (#34), Portugal (#38) and Hungary (#39). All of those countries have very small music markets, with the exception of Austria and Germany, which would explain why her sales in Europe aren’t that great.
Unfortunately, Lavigne underperforms in several key markets. Sweden (#84), United Kingdom (#90), Netherlands (#92), France (#95), Ireland (#97), and Spain (#98) are all among the worst markets for the singer. These results are unsurprising considering her relatively modest chart history in most of these markets.
Lavigne seems to have a good following in the Middle East, with markets such as Saudi Arabia (#18), Qatar (#25), United Arab Emirates (#28) and Kuwait (#31) making her personal Top 40.
As we have seen with many other acts, being huge in Brazil doesn’t always necessarily mean “huge in Latin America”. Brazil (#24) is one of the diva’s best markets, however, Mexico (#67), Argentina (#53), Chile (#87), Venezuela (#52) and Colombia (#54) aren’t exactly great markets for her. She still manages to do better in this region than other studied acts, such as Beyoncé and Mariah Carey.
Many of the acts analized have failed to make it big in Africa, however, South Africa is one of Lavigne‘s most supportive markets, ranking as high as #16. The rest of the continent is very weak in comparison.
Lavigne‘s home country, Canada, is a strong market for her, ranking at #30. The United States is one of her worst, ranking at #88.
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