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The path to releasing a single that does well on streaming DSPs may seem mystical. But, this is far from true.
While there’s no way (that I know of) to guarantee viral success, there are real things that you can start doing today to make sure your next singe has the best chance of doing well.
Here are 4 things that we’ve been doing for our singles this year (Ex: Euphoria, 8,000 streams, Premier League, 50,000 streams) that have gotten us more fans on our music.
It’s always a good idea to give yourself a buffer when you are releasing a song. A buffer is kind of like an airbag in a car; it keeps you safe in case something bad happens.
In music, this means giving yourself a decent amount of time between the day you upload the song to your distributor and the actual day of release.
There are many reasons for this.
First, Spotify requires you to upload your song at least 7 days before the scheduled release day, otherwise they won’t place your song on any of the automatically curated playlists such as ‘Release Radar’ and your Artist Radio. Further, they won’t allow you to pitch your song for their editorial playlists either.
Another important reason is that you need time just in case something goes wrong or you want to make change last minute. I actually recently caught a huge mistake where I uploaded the wrong audio file and I couldn’t have changed this without my buffer.
I recommend a four week buffer. But, if you’re going to push it, I’d say don’t go any sooner than 2 weeks.
This is related to playlisting.
Connecting with playlisters can be an excellent way to boost the performance of your song.
There are tons of dope playlisters out there offering free and reasonably priced slots on their lists. You can find many just by Googling or searching on social media.
This is also why giving yourself a buffer can be helpful. It will give you time to work out playlist placements before your single drops so that you have a higher traffic flood on release day. Even if it’s just a small free playlist that gets you a few hundred streams, those could be the difference in whether the algorithm picks up your song.
Once your song drops, you need to make content featuring it.
Long form is fine, such as full music videos and blog posts. But short form content is taking over the world right now, and that gives you an advantage.
Social posts like stories, Reels, TikToks, and YT Shorts don’t take long to make. These can be mini music videos that are no longer than 15 seconds, or it could be your friends and followers jamming out to your new single.
Whatever it is, just post it and post a lot. And always link your song directly to the post if possible. This will help you increase traffic to your song, resulting in more streams and a higher likelihood of a boost from the algorithm.
NOTE: Platforms love when you send traffic to their sites. So, YouTube and Spotify (for example) will note your flood of incoming traffic and will be more likely to recommend your content, especially if your listeners and viewers are consuming the entire piece of content.
This goes together with creating content. Once you have your content out there, and people are commenting and liking, engage back with them.
Don’t leave them hanging. Respond to every comment and DM. And you can even thank people personally via DM for liking or sharing your content.
Your ability to engage is endless, and it’s so important. At the end of the day, you have to remember that all these algorithms are based on the actions of real human beings.
So if more people find you relatable and have positive interactions with you, they’ll be more likely to engage with you in the future, and this will influence the algorithm greatly.
If you found this helpful and motivating, then you might also find value in this post about Artist Development.
Let me know below if you have questions.
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