The best-selling albums on the Billboard 200 were announced earlier today and a particular Pop star was noticeably absent from the upper region of the chart. However, as the excuses pour in to explain the failure of Nicki Minaj’s ‘Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded – The Re-Up’, let’s interpret the facts.
Following the standard Billboard 200 chart rules, the sales of ‘The Re-Up’ were combined with those of the original ‘Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded’ album. So, the 5K copies sold by ‘Roman Reloaded’ this week were added to the 31K of ‘The Re-Up’ for a humble sum of 36K units. Those sales boosted the former up the charts with a 591% surge and repositioned it from #107 to #27.
Naturally, Minaj’s camp were quick to offer numerous theories regarding the underwhelming showing of ‘The Re-Up’. Firstly, they correctly indicated that the rerelease was not sold at Walmart or Target – Minaj’s largest retailers – as a result of expected low demand for reissued material and the former store’s policy of avoiding content requiring parental advisory labels.
Yet, what Minaj’s team failed to mention was the fact that ‘The Re-Up’ was readily available via digital retailers such as Amazon and iTunes but was also performed dismally at those outlets. In fact, the album spent the majority of the last week outside of the latter’s top 50 chart and was even outsold by Mariah Carey’s 18-year old ‘Merry Christmas’ set. Did iTunes “set her up to fail”?
Secondly, while prancing around the big pink elephant in the room, which also didn’t purchase a copy of ‘The Re-Up’, Minaj’s spin doctors hinted that most rereleases rarely excel and the album was a success when compared to others. Namely, they related its sales to those of Katy Perry’s ‘Teenage Dream: The Complete Confection’.
Despite being backed by a pair of monster hit singles – ‘Wide Awake’ and ‘Part of Me’ – ‘The Complete Confection’ only drove the sales of ‘Teenage Dream’ to 33K copies during its opening week. Still, the former was released in March 2012 – nineteen months after the initial debut of ‘Teenage Dream’. Contrarily, ‘The Re-Up’ arrived seven months after ‘Roman Reloaded’ and during the November 2012 Thanksgiving sales rush.
Moreover, ‘The Complete Confection’ comprised only three new tracks and a two remixes, which were available on iTunes long before the rerelease hit stores. Minaj’s ‘The Re-Up’, on the other hand, featured seven new songs as well as a DVD of previously unseen footage.
‘The Re-Up’ was also promoted on a much larger scale that ‘The Complete Confection’. In addition to countless media interviews and a performance at the 2012 American Music Awards, Minaj also starred in her widely publicised ‘Nicki Minaj: My Truth’ three-part special on the E! Channel.
Hence, ‘The Re-Up’ simply failed to land a major impact on the charts. Regardless of the numerous excuses concocted by Minaj and her team, the major promotional campaign developed to push the album should have resulted in greater success, at least via digital retailers. See you next year when Minaj releases ‘Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded – The Re-Up Reinvention Spectacular‘ with a free order of fries at your local KFC.