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The Effect of Live Performances on Artist Popularity

Authors/Editors: Tonon, J.-C.
Claussen, J.
Peukert, C.
Published: 2012
Type: Articles in Refereed Journals (International)
Published by: Social Science Research Network (SSRN)

Abstract

Many factors may explain a musician's popularity, e.g. talent, promotional activities, word of mouth etc. While most research has focused on the importance of promotion, no academic work so far has explicitly tackled the impact of live performances on artist popularity. We aim at filling this gap by using a large and rich dataset from the popular online music servce last.fm. Micro-level observations of cancelled concerts allow us to exploit a unique experiment-like setting to study the causal impact of exposure to live performances on the attendees' listening behavior. We find that even long after giving a concert, artists still enjoy a considerable increase in music plays. This represents the first empirical evidence of a positive and lasting effect of live performances on artists' popularity.

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