As an artist with a limited budget who’s just uploaded music to streaming platforms, you may want to look into free music promotion. Your objective is to make your musical project more visible at a lower cost, and we understand, not every artist makes as much as Beyoncé right off the bat. But despite everything, you know the potential of your music, and you know that your musical works will find their audience thanks to good communication. All music created with passion can find its audience, so here are some tips to make your music content stand out among the millions of tracks available on music streaming services. To get listens on the music they have recently released, musicians can choose a paid solution, but there are also solutions that avoid spending money. You don’t have to turn out your pockets to make your music known. Audiences do listen to music via platforms like Napster or Qobuz, without spending too much money, so you shouldn’t have to spend much either.
1. Free music promotion through image
What music genres do you make? Electronic? Folk? Pop? Rap? Each of these has conventions that you can take ownership of. As an artist, you can use it to help the audience identify you. This involves the covers of your albums, for example. But also your style. Listening to music and watching what other artists do can help you understand your uniqueness and assert your identity. Record labels and major record companies like Universal are also looking at this. Does the artist convey something through their image? Yes? Then the creative ability of the musician is promising.
Be remarkable. Your favorite trinkets represent you, wear them. Become identifiable in a few elements. The audience will remember you more easily. And labels too. Think of your favorite musicians, they all have recognizable elements. The Stones, for example, wear scarves and tight jeans. Promoting your music sometimes involves creating a character that reflects your personality. It doesn’t have to be expensive to set up.
Finding music is not complicated as a listener. Through any online music service like Apple music, Spotify premium or Deezer premium. So to stand out among millions of titles, you need polished communication for social networks. No matter what genre you’re in, classical music, soul, hip-hop, or dance, you have to be there. The advantage is that it’s free.
Who listens to music and becomes a fan of an artist without checking out their Instagram? It’s quite rare nowadays, it’s become a reflex. We listen to unlimited music and when it makes us move, and we want to see what the artist looks like. A label will scrutinize the online presence of an artist it seeks to sign. Do the same.
Your music isn’t on the radio? No problem, you can reach a lot of people with social networks. You have to produce content, remaining yourself. There is no music player, but you can link music to listen to on any streaming service. Beautiful sound and music discoveries happen on social media! The large majority of artists who put music on the internet have understood this, as has the audience. These are the current practices, and they must be embraced in order to move forward. To illustrate this point, visualize: you’re listening to music, then a title comes on that you do not know. Which of the best sites do you choose to learn more about the artist who could become one of your favorites? Instagram of course. You type the name in the search bar, wanting to learn more. You check out their upcoming musical events, whether there are any hits you haven’t heard, and what they say. So don’t hesitate to do the same for yourself. There’s no charge here, all you need is a phone and an internet connection. Search your souvenir archive and publish anything that fits your image.
3. Get on playlists to promote your music for free
Incorporating your music into a highly followed playlist is ideal for boosting your streams. You can contact playlist curators in your genre; bass music, pop rock, funk or punk. There has got to be a playlist for you.
On this point, even if you manage to find the email or profile of playlist curators, paid services can give you a big boost; Groover, for example, allows you to guarantee a listen and a response in less than 7 days, and it’s friendly to small budgets.
Do you want to be sure that your music will be listened to by playlist curators? 👇
All the melodies of the moment have their place on a playlist. To find them, do in-depth research even on Soundcloud or YouTube, where people listen for free. On any streaming platform, don’t aim for big playlists, which are too hard to contact. But check the small and medium ones. Find out who curates them and send them your press kit by email or on Groover. Don’t forget that it is one of the main vectors on the platforms, any good music library that respects itself has one.
On the other hand, beware of scams: some cost money and don’t guarantee any return on investment. When it comes to streaming music, you can buy likes and views. So be careful, the numbers you see are not always correct.
Speaking of playlists, know that when a user shazams one of your sounds, it gets added to a personal playlist. That allows users to listen and discover later. And the more your sounds are added to a playlist, the more likely they are to “please” the platform’s algorithm. All composers with an Apple Music for Artists account have access to it.
4. Bonus tips
On a music listening site, you are not seen playing. Clearly, doing a concert helps to create a persona and engage the audience. It’s free, and at best you make money. Listening to live music is so much better for engaging with an artist. So go to concert halls and festivals, and find a date!
Get on the radio. We’re not talking about the most popular radio stations (although…) because they’re generally too difficult to reach. But find the contacts of the multitude of web radio stations available – which often exist as music apps – and send your music. Target the radio stations that match your identity; once again, there is something for everyone. Among your available titles, choose the ones to send. The newest are the most interesting!
Create royalty-free music. It’s a bit of a technical trick, but it can make you known to people who will take you further. Royalty-free music can be used on podcasts, for example, as a way to get in touch with creators who will help you back by doing your promotion. Streamers on Twitch often need free music too. Negotiate a play on their show, or at least a mention during the show, it’s all beneficial for you. To do this, create music under a creative commons license, and put it on the platforms provided for the purpose, or contact the creators directly.
– Translated by Kole Wright –