Charts:

BABYMETAL is recognized by name and face by 22% of the Japanese population, and 14.6% of people have interest in them (listening to their music, want to know about them, etc.)

Year-over-year, BABYMETAL’s public recognition falls for the 2nd consecutive year (again at -2%), meanwhile the public interest falls for the first time at -10%.


BABYMETAL’s numbers:

Public Recognition 2015-2019:
2015: 12
2016: 15.5
2017: 23
2018: 22.5
2019: 22

Public Interest 2015-2019:
2015: 7.1
2016: 10.1
2017: 15.6
2018: 16.3
2019: 14.6

Year-to-year changes:

Public Recognition:
2015-16: 29%
2016-17: 48%
2017-18: -2%
2018-19: -2%

Public Interest:
2015-16: 42%
2016-17: 54%
2017-18: 4%
2018-19: -10%


Survey Methodology:

  • Survey: They conduct the survey via fax & web 4 times a year: Feb, May, Aug, and Nov. in regions across Japan (Tokyo, Chiba + others). Each time, they surveyed approximately 1200 people.
  • Recognition – They asked the respondents if they know the name and the face. If they do, then they recognized the talent.
  • Interest – For the group that recognized the talent, they were further asked if they would listen, watch, or find out about the person. The possible answers are 1) very interested, 2) interested, 3) not interested, 4) absolutely not interested. The % is based on a weighted average of those who were very interested and interested.

Note: these are not the full details, as the page is cut off.


Analysis:

Note: these are my personal interpretations, they are not factual. You can have other, completely different, interpretations.

As written above, both numbers fell this year. It is not hard to see that as last year was BABYMETAL’s year with the least amount of shows since 2012, and the least in Japan since 2010 (their debut year). It was also the year with the least PR, with only an interview coming out in January about LEGEND S (from the year before), and a few questions answered for Download UK. Though they did play 4 new sons (and released 2 of them with MV’s). It is hard to know if the change in style (losing Yui and Mikio, as well as outfit change, new rotating dancers, and shorter shows) played a part in this.

On the bright side, they don’t lose much on either chart, and BABYMETAL is still quite high overall on the list, so they are still doing better than most idol bands. With that said, comparing 2015-2017 years to 2017-2019 shows a clear drop, not just 2018-2019. Going from 2016’s 54% increase in public interest to 2017’s 4% is not good (even worse with 2018’s -10%).

So this is not just an issue of 2018’s change of style, as 2017 did quite poorly as well. If you compare to another non-album year, like 2015, which increased 29% and 42%, while in 2017 it was -2% and 4%… it shows to me that it’s mostly due to the lack of PR. As although there were more shows and festivals across Japan in 2015, as well as new songs (RoR, Karate, YAVA, THE ONE), there were more solo shows in 2017, so the numbers shouldn’t have dropped as much. The biggest change in those years was PR. In 2015, BM appeared on many TV shows to play, as well as did interviews, photoshoots, appeared at award ceremonies, and other big events, in 2017 they only did a couple of short, written, interviews and a couple of short videos. Remember this is in Japan, so BABYMETAL’s support shows in 2017 probably benefited their US recognition a lot.

In any case, 2019 will probably be much better, as they already did an interview with both members, and they are also going to release an album. In terms of shows in Japan, 2019 still falls short (only 1 more show than 2018 so far announced). But it’s possible the big US tour might create some buzz in Japan.


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