This song marks a nexus in Sia's career. She had modest success as an artist, but was looking to transition into songwriting for other artists so she would have to deal with unpleasantries like promotion and scrutiny. A very introspective songwriter, her manager, Jonathan Daniel, told her to focus on a single concept when writing pop songs. Sia tried it with "Titanium," building the whole song around the metaphor of a study metal resistant to harm. It didn't reflect how she really felt, but was very easy for her, so she followed the formula on "Diamonds
," which became a #1 hit for Rihanna.
Sia's plan was to fulfill her contract by making one last solo album, then crank out more pop songs for other artists. But when she released the video for the first single, "Chandelier
," it was stratospherically successful, so she diverted her efforts into her own work, hiding under a huge wig to keep restrained.