From left: Taylor Swift (Toby Melville/Reuters) and Kelsea Ballerini (Rick Diamond/Getty Images for Black River Entertainment)

Up-and-coming country singer Kelsea Ballerini was probably having a fairly normal Monday until Taylor Swift tweeted this:

This isn’t the first time that Swift, the fourth most-followed person on Twitter with 54 million followers (just behind Katy Perry, Justin Bieber and President Obama), has thrown her support behind a new artist. She does it fairly regularly, from singer-songwriters such as Vance Joy and Borns to her buddy Ed Sheeran. Even Nicki Minaj famously thanked Swift for helping her send “Super Bass” into the stratosphere after Swift talked about how much she loved the song.

So when Swift tweeted about Ballerini around 2 p.m. Monday, we decided to see the sales ranking and buzz effect at 2 p.m. on Thursday. What happens 72 hours after Swift tweets about your music?

Twitter followers

Ballerini had about 8,800 followers on Monday. Now she’s close to topping 11,000. As illustrated below, her follower count trickled upwards until it took a huge spike after the Swift tweet.

Impact: Nothing too tangible, but a few thousand more followers can’t hurt when you have an upcoming album to promote.

(Screen shot from Twitter counter )

Sales and downloads rankings
On Monday, look at the stats for Ballerini’s debut self-titled EP and first single, “Love You Like You Mean It”:

EP on iTunes country Top 150 album chart: No. 42
EP on iTunes all-genre Top 150 album chart: Not listed
Single on iTunes country singles chart: No. 29
Single on iTunes all-genre singles chart: No. 125

On Thursday? Big jumps.

EP on iTunes country Top 150 album chart: No. 17
EP on iTunes all-genre Top 150 album chart: No. 139
Single on iTunes country singles chart: No. 22
Single on iTunes all-genre singles chart: No. 97

Impact: No, a Swift tweet doesn’t send a song straight to the top of the charts. But while Ballerini’s single didn’t move up as much, her EP jumping 25 spots in three days on the iTunes country charts is impressive. That could be because Swift specifically mentioned the EP in her tweet, while the singles she referenced were just hashtags (“Love You Like You Mean It” and “Yeah Boy”), and some people may not have caught on.

(screenshot from iTunes on Monday)

(screenshot from iTunes on Thursday)


Where to even begin? Just a sampling:

“Meet Taylor Swift’s favorite new country singer” (USA Today)
“Taylor Swift throws support behind newcomer Kelsea Ballerini” (Just Jared)
“The new song Taylor Swift is obsessed with” (Glamour)

Impact: Probably the biggest boost — tons of headlines, even from publications that don’t focus on country music. (Even Perez Hilton threw in a mention.) And that’s the kind of help that will be invaluable down the line.

Read more:

How Blake Shelton replaced Taylor Swift as the face of mainstream country music

Taylor Swift’s “1989”: A pivot into pop, a misstep into conformity

Taylor Swift’s “Bad Blood”: How we know she’s singing about Katy Perry