While the circumstances for their debuts were somewhat similar — debut at the beginning of the sales and streaming tracking week, immediate support from radio — Ariana Grande’s previous single “Focus” had a considerable advantage over new single “Dangerous Woman.”
Its official music video launched on the same day as the formal audio release, and first-week video streams contributed handsomely to the song’s overall activity.
That overall activity was enough for a #7 debut on the Billboard Hot 100.
Without a music video to drive extra first week streams, “Dangerous Woman” was not expected to debut as prominently on the Hot 100.
Indeed, it did not. It did, however, still debut very prominently. “Dangerous Woman” starts at #10 on the Billboard Hot 100.
No one can take away its impressive debut mark, but the biggest story regarding “Focus” is its failure to stick. While strong streaming prevented it from outright crashing down the Hot 100 in subsequent weeks, it never gained momentum on the sales chart and quickly faded at radio.
“Dangerous Woman” may have debuted lower on the chart, but the true test will concern its longevity. Can it demonstrate the lasting resonance that “Focus” could not?
We will find out in the coming weeks.