Popularity is fickle. The line between popular success and failure can sometimes be so thin as to barely exist at all. Sometimes all that is required is to be seen in the right light.
For pop failure can be just as fickle. Earning success on your merits, no matter how great, can be reversed entirely by the fickle hand of popularity over something as meaningless as the color of the coat you wore last year.
And so the much more difficult line to walk is to balance the instant success against the instant failure, and find the happy middle ground. You miss out on the wild mobs of adoring fans. You also miss out on the inevitable fall.