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Love Conquers All: The Secret Behind a Winning Eurovision Song

On the occasion of the 66th annual Eurovision Song Contest, the creative agency ABCD has revealed the formula behind a winning Eurovision song. By analysing more than 15,000 lyrics from every winning song since Eurovision began in 1956, ABCD were able to draw conclusions about what previous contest champions have in common. All non-English tracks were first translated into English, to standardise the lexicon and make it easier to observe commonly-used vocabulary.

The simple answer to what makes a winning Eurovision song is love. By far the most commonly-used word in the winning songs to date has been “love”, appearing 148 times in lyrics across the decades.

Indeed, what many winning songs historically have had in common is their focus on passion: evocative lyrics like “heart”, “night”, “hero”, “beautiful”, “kiss” and “lover” are also in the top 30 most commonly used terms in history.

In contrast, Eurovision champions have steered clear of negativity in their lyrics, with few words in the top 30 having any downbeat connotations. Instead, winners have united the continent — “together”, “Europe” and “peace” also make the top 30 most popular lyrics.