Taylor Swift is the world’s highest paid female entertainer and an economic force to be reckoned with as she rides pop stardom to billionaire status with her record-breaking The Eras Tour.
Crashing Ticketmaster with unprecedented demand, the show has been the fastest-selling concert tour in the ticketseller’s history, and is on track to becoming the first billion-dollar concert tour ever, possibly topping $1.5 billion, as estimated by Pollstar. Her domestic tour alone is projected to add a whopping $5 billion to the U.S. economy, with concert-goers spending an average of $1300 per show on tickets, outfits, merchandise, food, drink, and travel, according to research firm QuestionPro.
Her concert film, which premiered this October, had the highest grossing opening weekend ever, raking in $92.8 million, and is currently the go-to jam for 10-year old dance parties in theaters across the U.S. and abroad. With hundreds of millions of adoring fans cheering her on, Swiftie mania has become a cultural phenomenon, dominating much of the media coverage for 2023.
The pop star has even boosted ratings and merchandise sales for the NFL with fans who have been watching for her in the stands as she roots on her boyfriend, Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce. A Fanatics spokesperson told The Hollywood Reporter that sales of Kelce jerseys jumped 400 percent during her attendance of his Sep. 24 game. NBC reported a record 27 million viewers during her appearance at his Oct. 1 game, making it the most watched Sunday broadcast since the Super Bowl.
With 274 million followers on Instagram, 94.6 million on Twitter (X), 79 million on Facebook, 54.6 million on YouTube, and 22 million on TikTok, Swift has used her platform to advocate for women’s and LGBTQ+ rights, including the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act’s protections against domestic violence, stalking, and date rape, and the Equality Act to protect the LGBTQ+ community from discrimination at work, school, and other public spaces.
Swift has also been known to reach out to fans to help them through hard times. This has included paying down student debt, contributing to GoFundMe campaigns for rent, and even giving a service dog to a boy with autism, among her other philanthropic gestures, according to Billboard.
On the road during her concert tours, she often donates to food banks in communities she has performed in and has generously doled out millions of dollars in bonuses to her crew in appreciation for the work that’s been done to make her show a success.
But perhaps her most significant achievement has been in blazing a trail for creators’ rights. In 2015, Swift boldly stopped Apple from skirting payments to artists by threatening to pull her hits from the platform. And more recently, she won a battle to regain ownership and control over her first six albums when her label, Big Machine Records, refused to sell her the rights to her works unless she re-signed with them. Rather than give in to what she considered to be onerous terms, Swift left for a more lucrative deal with Universal Music Group’s Republic Records, which offered her ownership over all of her recordings in addition to the opportunity to re-record her earlier works.
She has since recorded Taylor’s Versions of her multi-platinum albums “Fearless,” “Red,” and “Speak Now” to much fanfare, and her re-release of “1989” this past October is expected to become to be her biggest re-recording to date, a steep hill to climb as her previous album, “Midnights,” currently holds the Guinness World Record for ‘Most Streams on Spotify in 24 hours.’
In a blog post to her fans, Swift urged young artists to learn how to protect themselves during negotiations, telling them: “You deserve to own the art you make.”