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Engage with Streaming Services to Better Engage Your Fans

Engage with streaming services: playlistingAs more and more of our clients here at The Orchard see streaming services generating a major share of their revenue, a blog post about marketing your releases on streaming services seems pertinent.

À-la-carte download stores do not always have the discovery dimension that full-length streaming functionality offers, and the structure of the store is very much built around a lead homepage and a few editorial pages. Marketing your releases on such a service is therefore highly dependent on the relationship you’ve built with the editor and the quality of your pitch.

With streaming services who boast about 20 million tracks open to for users to browse and listen to, the game has somewhat changed. Other than Beats who position themselves slightly differently, a lot of these services make heavy use of algorithms to populate their recommendations or browse sections, limiting editorial placement so far.

To help increase your visibility despite these restrictions, here are a few guidelines on what you can do to market your content on streaming services:

Less is more (isn’t it always?)
It’s more effective to make fewer playlists containing a limited number of tracks (10-15) and keep them updated regularly. Every time you update your playlist, your followers receive a notification.

Keep an eye on what’s trending
Consider including tracks that are popular at the time into your playlist in order to increase your chances of gaining more followers. Your playlists don’t necessarily have to include releases from your catalogue only.

Weave your own web
Good ideas for artist playlists are themes such as what they listen to before going on stage or what they listened to while writing their album. These playlists also offer a great opportunity for artists from a same label to include each other.

As a label,  you can take advantage of a large catalogue by creating playlists around  one of your strongest genres.

Be active on the service, even when you don’t have a recent release
No matter what stage you’re in in producing a new record, it is important that you not wait until said release is coming out to start engaging with streaming platforms. On a service like Spotify, you want to build a base of followers before the release comes out, so that when it finally does, all your followers get a notification about it.

In a nutshell, you want to keep your profile exciting. If you need ideas or additional best practices, keep an eye for service-specific resources, like Spotify for Artists, and follow our updates on The Daily Rind.

Stream Our Texas-Sized SXSW 2014 Music Sampler

sxsw_texas-sized-samplerIt’s hard to believe, especially given the seemingly inexhaustible supply of cold and snow heaped on us here on the East Coast this winter, but SXSW is once again right around the corner. To that I say YEE FREAKING HAW! Goodbye twenty degree weather and the possibility of snow flurries. Hello to the relative certainty of warmer temps and the inevitability of good BBQ, breakfast tacos, margaritas, cold beer, and more great music than you can shake a stick at.

The team has spent the last few weeks listening to as much music as we can by artists who will be performing next week to get ourselves in the right frame of mind. And because we also want you to be in the right frame of mind, we’ve assembled the following massive 200-track Spotify playlist (also available on Playlists.net) featuring some of our favorite tracks from Tweens, Jessica Hernandez & The Deltas, Sam Roberts Band, Leif Vollebekk, Albert Hammond, Jr., DJ Rashad, We Were Promised Jetpacks, Lizzo, Travis Barker, and many many others.

Now all we have to do is dig up our warm weather gear.

*News Flash* The Music Business Has Been Fixed

billboard_musicpopularityThat’s not really true. Let me start differently. The music business is not broken. If I hear one more artist complain about the broken music industry and the small digital payouts, I am going to pull my hair out. (Luckily I am already bald so it is not a real concern.)

If you are successful, the music business is amazing. Lots of fun, money, drugs and alcohol (if you choose and I am not endorsing this behavior) and of course the opportunity to make music that people enjoy. If you are not popular, the problem is that there is not much money. Still lots of fun, drugs and alcohol (but you have to pay for them) and still plenty of opportunities to make music. But no money. And it has nothing to do with Spotify payouts or the quality of the music.

I used to hear complaints about the broken business back in the 20th century. Here is a list of a few of the common ones:

  • I need to get signed by a label to release my music.
  • Recording is too expensive.
  • I have no way to reach potential fans.
  • I can’t get distribution.

These problems don’t exist anymore. Solved. But still there is a lot of complaining. The system must be broken. The business just doesn’t work. I can’t make enough money to survive with my music. Digital services just don’t pay enough.

SSShhhhhhh. Let me tell you a little secret. It is a secret that all the successful artists know. Are you ready? You need to become popular. Then you earn a lot of money. People that knew this: Elvis, The Beatles, Bob Dylan, Led Zeppelin, The Rolling Stones, Madonna, every rapper that ever existed, Taylor Swift, Jarvis Cocker, Oasis, and the list goes on and on and on.

The last time I checked there was still only one number 1 single every week. Make it to number 1 and you will see that the system pays out a lot of money. Don’t get hung up on your numbers of streams, downloads, views, etc. It is only the amount in relation to the other artists. So 100,000 video views may seem like a lot but it really doesn’t stack up to the billion views a top artist receives. Same with streaming payouts. Even 1 million streams is not a lot. There’s no money in 1 million streams.

So please stop blaming the system. It is hard to make money in the music industry. But it is not because the industry is broken.

Pick Your Valentine’s Day Playlist

Valentine's Day: S/He Loves MeHello, lovers. And haters. It’s almost Valentine’s Day, so we’ve revisited and updated two playlists conceived last year to either celebrate your partner’s love, or say phooey to the whole greeting-card scam.

Whoa. Who. Is. THAT? My heart’s racing. My stomach is flipping. I’m lightheaded. I’ve never felt like this before. What’s that sound? Oh, it’s angels singing. Look, the clouds are parting. The sun’s rays are forming a perfect spotlight around that beautiful creature. Oh my God. I have to sit down. No, I should go over there and introduce myself. What should I say? OK, don’t freak out. Calm down. But how can I act casual when every cell in my body is exploding with unbridled passion for such human perfection? Wait. Now I hear different music. Wonderful music. Approximately 35 songs, egging me on. I think I’m in love.

S/He Loves Me Not: A Valentine's Day PlaylistS/HE LOVES ME NOT
What did I ever see in that self-absorbed, manipulative, back-stabbing s**tbag? Oh right, I thought I was in love. Big mistake. Ugh. All those shallow platitudes. All those broken promises. And I thought I had found “the one.” Instead I found “the zero.” I just wasted a chunk of my life I’ll never get back. Hey you, reading this. Next time you see me getting all sloppy over some dud, give me a little heads-up, OK? Slap some headphones on my paralyzed noggin. Play me something that’ll pull me out of the fuzzy-wuzzy sentimental slop. Approximately 30 songs, to give me perspective and remind me: Love stinks.

Karaoke In Your Backyard

December 19, 2013 Marketing No Comments

karaoke_jollyholidayjamsAs a huge fan of karaoke (best idea of a good time = reserved room + mic + tacky karaoke machine with drastically unrelated South Korean video clips), I’ve often toyed with the idea of buying my own personal karaoke player. Usually, the daunting task of keeping my library updated holds me back and I focus rather on planning my next night out with Alanis Morissette’s “You Oughta Know.”

So imagine my excitement when I realized that not only did The Orchard have a vast catalogue of karaoke tracks, but that they were also available for streaming on Spotify, Rdio, Deezer and all other streaming services. A few days later, we had three new playlists on both our Spotify and Playlists.net profiles:

In them, you’ll find summer hits like “Get Lucky” and “Blurred Lines,” musical favorites like “I Dreamed A Dream” and “Defying Gravity,” and holiday classics like “Jingle Bell Rock” and “Baby It’s Cold Outside.” Even better, we’ll be updating these regularly to include the most relevant tracks for each playlist, and if we see you like your karaoke as much as I do, we’ll create more. Think Psychedelic Hits from the 70s, Timeless Classics and genre focused ones from Pop to Country and everything in between.

So pull out that hairbrush or egg beater and start belting!

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