Susan Boyle’s most recent record has topped the charts in the UK and the US for 2009. While this feat may seem like a big victory for the web over the radio, within these data lie a tough story that needs to be considered.
Using the back of a napkin, you can easily arrive at upwards of one billion “impressions” of Susan Boyle online and offline—moments in time when viewers, listeners or readers were treated to or focused upon she who is know as SUBO. In fact, this one billion number may actually be a gross under-estimate.
In the context of this many impressions, Susan Boyle’s reported 5 million records sold translates to no more than a 0.5% conversion rate—less than one half of one percent of these moments translated into a sale.
The rise of SUBO may in fact be the most significant and recent evidence of the absolutely massive number of “impressions” that must now occur in order to move consumers from indifference to action in the modern market for music.