Playlist Marketing: How to get your music into Spotify Playlists

You might have wondered how to do Playlist Marketing and get more streams on Spotify.

If that is the case, you will love this article.

In this guide we will teach you:

  • Why playlist marketing is important for all modern musicians
  • How to get more streams for your songs on Spotify
  • How to get into Spotify playlists with 1000+ followers
  • How to get more followers to your own playlists

 

But first let’s quickly get through some music marketing history:

To market your music today is not the same as it was back in the days when you sold CDs.

The music industry has moved from buying CDs to downloading to streaming.

Yes, the Vinyl has made a nice comeback with increasing sales…

But, there is a huge difference how to market yourself if you are selling CD’s, downloads or streams.

This might come as a surprise to you:

When the CD player was king, you didn’t want to change cd’s all the time.

That’s why record stores mostly sold CDs.

But in the streaming world, albums are dead.

Why?

Because people have access to an infinite amount of music and can make their own playlists and add them together with songs they like.

You can say a Playlist is a better form of an album.

I’m sorry if you are feeling nostalgic or even angry about this fact.

We know that all artists love the album format of music:

  • Maybe because it’s tangible
  • Maybe because you grew up going to the record store choosing which album to buy.
  • Maybe you took the booklet out and read it at the same time as you were listening to your brand new album.
  • Maybe because it’s a great format

But please let us explain:

First of all, understand that we talk about digital music and streaming, not physical albums.

Playlists are the new album in the streaming world, and here’s why:

When promoting an album or EP the fact of the matter is that only one song will actually be listened to. The attention span of bloggers and other influencers are too short. They will listen to the first song, and if they like it they will add only one of the songs into a playlist. Maybe they will listen to the whole album, but they will still choose the best one.

The same goes for the average music consumer.

This means that you have put your money, effort and love into a great album that no one will listen to.

But there is a silver lining:

In the streaming world, playlists are albums on steroids. You can make a playlist based on different releases. Or an album. Or all your albums. Of all your best tracks. Of your best tracks together with your favourite tracks.

This also gives music curators, record labels and fans some new tools to show their taste and to market themselves.

To create and get into Playlists are a great way to both gain new fans and keep your fans listening to your music.

Why playlists are important in music marketing

Keep fans listening to your music

In the old days when you sold CD’s when someone had bought your music, it didn’t matter how many times they played the record. You had still earned your $15 or whatever.

The similar is true when looking at downloads, only that the download price often were much cheaper (costs too).

When someone streams your song on Spotify you will get around $0.0047 per stream, which means you need your track to be played around 200 times before that makes up for one track downloaded.

However, there is one often forgot about the fact:

You will be able to make money on your track for a longer period of time!

AND

… the potential is actually larger with streams even though it is harder to reach up to the CD level. Let me visualize this in a graph:

Revenue from a record downloads vs streams

So the trick is not only to get your fans to listen to your music, it is to keep your fans listening to your music again and again.

How can you do that?

With Spotify Playlists of course!

Get new fans from playlists

There are 3 types of playlists you can get your music to appear on.

First, your fans private playlist that will mainly get one user to listen to your song more.

Second, influencers playlists that will let you gain new fans that have never listened to your music before.

There are examples of songs that have doubled their total plays over a night just because they were added to a Spotify playlist with a lot of followers.

Third, autogenerated playlists such as Discover Weekly on Spotify or Release Radar.

How to get added to Playlists then?

Promotion Agencies

First of all, you could always use a promotion agency specialized in this.

However, that is not so easy to find and if you have more time than money, we would advise you to do this yourself since most of the job you can do successfully on your own, and sometimes more efficiently than a promo agency.

The benefits with a promo agency are their existing contacts. They have already made the research with other clients before so it will probably go faster to reach the results with an agency. So figure out what’s the best option for you.

They have already made the research with other clients before so it will probably go faster to reach the results with an agency. So figure out what’s the best option for you.

Ask tastemakers and influencers

If you decide to do it yourself, let’s know the game:

All of Spotify’s playlists are quite exclusive and made by them. You need to prove that you are worth their playlists and somehow establish a relationship with Spotify.

Then there are the Major three as usual:

Universal, Sony and Warner, have bought/made “playlist brands” so they have their own playlists via Digster, Filtr and Topsify respectively.

So your aim could be these, but they are quite hard to get into. Even Sony, Universal or Warner can’t let all of their artists into their own playlists, the competition is fierce.

Then there are all the smaller playlists:

Your focus should be on the third party/user-generated playlists that have more than 1000 followers.  you can have a quite good hit-rate but still get some results when you appear on the playlist.

You can have quite a good hit-rate but still get some results when you appear on the playlist.

The main problem is that the playlists are not hard to find but to find the contact info is…

If you are going for smaller playlist, here are a few tips:

Start making a list of playlists you are interested to be added to. Use a spreadsheet program like Excel for PC users, or Google Spreadsheet or Apple’s equivalent Numbers. There can be playlists such as label playlists, genre playlistsoccasion playlists, mood playlists or user playlist etc.

Sort them by popularity (followers), get a column for contact details if you can find them. To search for the user on Facebook or Twitter can be a good start if you can find them.

If you can make the playlist curators follow you on Spotify it’s possible to send songs to them right from Spotify.

This is really hard but a small chance to do this is to start to follow the user behind a playlist you are interested in and hope for a follow back. Then you can right-click one of your own songs and click share, and share it to the tastemaker right in Spotify.

If you feel this is a real struggle (as most of us) there is a better way:

Pitch your music to a Kolibri playlist hub

Instead of looking up contacts to different tastemakers, you can pitch your song to all relevant playlists at the same time.

There is only one Playlist Hub that we know of and it is the Kolibri Music Playlist Hub.

Create your own playlist

Sometimes, the best and most efficient way is just to create your own playlist and try to get as many followers as possible. Then you can start to collaborate with other artists and help them as well.

A good start is to get 250 followers to your artist profile on Spotify and get verified. Then you can brand your own playlists with a cover art and make a description and make your playlist stand out and be more attractive. Your followers will also get a notification every time you share something with them.

Then you can brand your own playlists with a cover art and make a description and make your playlist stand out and be more attractive. Your followers will also get a notification every time you share something with them.

The big problem here is to get the followers and keep them. Somehow you need to spread your music and as you probably know, Facebook won’t do the work for you automatically.

Somehow you need to spread your music and Facebook could be a good start, but probably won’t do the work for you.

Instead, you could share your awesome playlist in a place where people are looking for a new playlist, such as Kolibri Playlist Share.

 

No matter what playlist you are featured on, remember that you can feature a playlist on your Spotify Artist Page. This is a great way to show appreciation to a playlist curator.

Good luck with your playlist marketing!

 

2 Comments
  1. Daniel 10 months ago

    Good article! Could you maybe tell the date of publishing it? Because in the online marketing workd things can change pretty quickly.
    Thanks and best regards
    Daniel

    • Author
      admin 9 months ago

      Thank you Daniel for the heads up, this was originally created 2017-01-22, but has been updated a few times since.

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