Monday, August 27, 2018

Spotify don't break careers, stop thinking of Spotify.

I have this conversation at least once a week. Artists or managers or even bookers looking at Spotify numbers and actually think they mean something! Here is some breaking news:


Spotify is good to make some buck out of your recordings. But it's not a tool to break an artist or get fans. Their playlists are utterly useless to break an artist on. Spotify is a good tool when your fan base is growing and it is one of several outlets where fans can listen to your music.

It's not a place where you try to get fans.

So a friend of mine had this conversation today. And I feel it takes up all the things that the artist thinks that Spotify would do for you. And these are normal questions that I get all the time, so I was thinking to once again write the truth around it ( and probably get more enemies in the industry :)...especially old farts that just learned how to pitch to playlists ).

So her is the conversation:
Hello! All good?
If I use a good distribution service, how much is the chance that the song I upload will end up in any Spotify playlists?
Know it's about well recorded and how good it is, but thought if there was any guarantee at other places? I run a collaboration with a guy now this year and we upload through his company in Austria but feel that all we don't get our songs on Spotify. So we are looking for other distribution services to have a better chance of ending in various Spotify lists.

There are never guarantees. But many services are guaranteed to not get in on lists like Spinnup, Cdbaby, Distrokid etc since you can't even get the right links. Spotify picks away amateurs and self-rendered artists and sites that these use. 

On first of October Spotify will change this so you can do it from your artist account, still, that won't work since it's so many releases they need computers to go through all that. We guess this service will just be like a black hole and that they pick up on in old statistics. But hey we will see.

So it does not depend on distribution, but how it is done and how it is shaped. Then Spotify changes from the first of October, making it basically impossible for bands to get in and just bigger companies with a VIP line. So Spotify will make this even harder if you don¨t have a bigger releaeplan.

Ah okay, because we really want to get into "new music friday" or such. We have a PR in Austria but their job is just getting the songs in Austrian radio we needed more than that. At this point, Spotify playlists are so big thing, without it we are underestimated, we try to aim far beyond what we get now.

I can say directly to get into New Music Friday does not help a shit. You must enter more lists. Lists that keeps on going for weeks. Even if you get that it won't take your artist anywhere.  It's some kind of myth that artists have come up with that if you have a lot of streams you have a career. I can point out hundreds of artist that have millions of streams and don't go anywhere careerwise. It's nice to be on the playlists but in reality, won't take you further. It's more like a good review in a blog. It's nice but very seldom break your career. What you need is a more varied pr and Spotify will come to you much later. So, instead, go for a tour and live gigs to pick up fans. These fans will alter help your Spotify numbers and then the algorithms will add you on. So what kind of marketing do you do?

But your artists get on the lists? And tehy gig gigs and cool placements? We want that things and Spotify playlists seem to work well for your artists? That is why we look around in other ways to distribute that had benefited us more today because what we need is to get the artist name out.  I do simple marketing then I need a team behind in some way that could help us to get into different playlists. So right now it's not about making money. More getting out more our names in the face of fans. We have had some bad luck when we used submithub in the three songs we have released but feel strong for the three next to be released and therefore we want to get them out in the best way.

Yes, our artists are on playlists but that has to do with that we do all the other cool stuff. And that stuff comes from the management that brings in opportunities. Nothing comes from Spotify. But Spotify likes that it's a lot of things going on around the artists and for that put them in the playlist. The fact that they are on lists is that they have a good company and have a good release schedule. The distribution channel is totally unimportant, but it's none of them release themselves.

So getting your artist on New Music Friday won't change anything. Basically, you get 10 000 streams which are a pee in the ocean. You need around one million streams the first week to get something out of Spotify. But it won't give much of name and most booking and industry people that are important thinks that's fairly unimportant with the Spotify numbers. The numbers mainly show how much PR was done. And a song that are ten years old can suddenly just get a hell of a lot of streaming numbers if placed on a certain list. The numbers don't tell anything of the status of the artist or how good song it is. Just how many people that have discovered it right now.

What you need is better PR. If submithub does not work, it is either wrong with the music or the story. So the question is how many gigs, showcase festivals have you booked in for these three singles?

Okay, I understand your opinion and both appreciate you taking your time but even so you know what you're talking about after all these years in the industry so trust what you say and who say hugely thank you for taking your time!

There I know is a shortcoming of gigs and showcases, they do some gigs at every release then there's a lack of point for us when we don't have anything to focus gigs round  So what can you if submithub does not hook on any songs?

Then the artists are not working and then it's impossible. Many think a good song will fix everything, but even with a good song, everything else must be there. There must be good social media. There must be around two gigs in a month, there must be several things in the future all the time. . If you miss out of any of it, it will be slow and you will not get out to people to find you.
So what you need are future highlights for this artist.

In reality what my friend is looking for is Santa Claus. Some special person or organization that mysteriously should get this artist a break. It never happens. The break comes when you are around and people bump into you and start looking. They see you work hard and are going places and have good things coming. Then they jump on.

That can never happen on Spotify. Spotify comes later when you have done all these things. So stop looking on Spotify. It doesn't mean anything for the career. It effects of all the other things you do.

Also, many of my more successful artists don't have that many Spotify numbers. They are successful because of all the other stuff.

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