As many of us know Billboard tracks various success levels of records, songs and artists.

There is a Billboard tracker called 'hotplay' relating to the amount of times a song is played.

How is this determined?

Is there some sort of a reporting mechanism that radio stations use to indicate the number of times they have played a song and logged and reported it to Billboard?

1 Answer 1


The "hot" trackers try to measure full exposure of the song through different channels, buy aggregating data from radio airplay, sales, and streaming.

Radio exposure is measured by a subjective concept of "audience impressions" (quoting from Billboard's own site). Normally this would be evaluated by using marketing measurement methods, i.e. inquiry of a sample audience, not the number of times the song was played (that won't tell you how many people actually listened to it). But it could be a complex method involving number a plays, yes, together with global audience ratings for each show, etc.

The different channels have different weights to (at least in theory) account for the different characteristics. I don't know about radio, but I know that regarding streaming, 1500 plays (yes, 15 hundred) count the same as the sale of 1 unit of a physical product (e.g. CD or Vynil).

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