Justin Timberlake has made a huge musical comeback of late — unleashing new tracks and art for his upcoming album, The 20/20 Experience, unto the world. But how many people, you may ask, have laid eyes on Timberlake’s ophthalmology-themed album art? Apparently, a lot.
Timberlake has been rolling out news about his new album via social media as kind of a slow burn, starting out with a cryptic teaser video at the beginning of the year, followed by a new single — released via the newly relaunched, Timberlake-backed Myspace — and all manner of performances, videos and news.
On February 6, Timberlake revealed the cover of his new album via interactive image-sharing service Stipple (which he also backs), and — according to the company — the image saw impressive engagement:
* 314,893 album art image views between 2/6 and 2/14
* 74% engagement (IE, 74% of people clicked on the album art image, browsing photos, track listings, videos and more)
* 60+ sites “top tier” sites embedded the image
Add to that more than 7 million views for Timberlake’s “Suit & Tie” music video since its Valentine’s Day release and a highly tweeted-about Grammy performance and you have one Web-centric album reveal.
Times certainly have changed since Timberlake’s last album, 2006′s FutureSex/LoveSounds, hit the scene. When that album dropped, his label, Sony BMG, was just going full-tilt into the digital game in an effort to supplement waning CD sales, offering up 71 offerings around the album — only one of which was physical. The rest comprised ringtones, wallpaper, singles and a digital album — a digital album that was the biggest album for pre-order ever at the time on iTunes.
Now, the slow trickle, online method has become the norm for music releases, and fans have even more opportunities to engage with a disc before it hits their CD players — or Spotify accounts.
We’ll just have to wait and see what effect all this digital attention has on sales of The 20/20 Experience when it drops — along with accompanying documentary — on March 19.