Anyone who creates music and uploads it to SoundCloud wants to see a response. Good feedback is both crucial and inspiring for aspiring artists. The problem is that it's difficult to actually get other people to discover your music. You can share it with friends and family, and post on forums, but that's not enough. If you want to start seeing thousands of plays on every new track, you need to step it up.
Stations are one of the newest features to SoundCloud. These allow listeners to start a station based on any specific track. If you've ever used Pandora or Spotify's radio stations, you’re already familiar with how this works. The station pulls genre details about the track and mixes it with your own listening habits, thus creating a constant stream of new music.
Manipulating these in your favor isn't easy, and this feature is new so expect changes to how it works. Using similar hashtags and keywords as the ones popular artists use is one way to help you appear on stations, just make sure these popular artists are in your genre. If you are getting plays from stations in completely different genres, you'll get skipped.
At the least, this new station feature is a healthy reminder to keep your tags relevant. SoundCloud is trying to help you get more exposure through this. Don't let it backfire by having the wrong keywords, hashtags, etc.
A common tactic up-and-coming artists use is offering their music for free. This doesn't mean you have to offer all your music, and it doesn't have to be permanent. Still, plenty of people have seen success from throwing a simple [Free Download] in a song title. To be realistic, if you only have a handful of followers to begin with, you won't be getting sales anyway.
Giving other people permission to use your track also helps draw attention. If you offer it as royalty free, people might grab it and use it in a video or something like that. Most of the time, people will be respectful and link back to your track on the platform they're using it. If you have good music, people will use it. When they use it, you get more exposure – simple as that.
Gaining attention on SoundCloud is always going to be difficult without social proof. You gain social proof by having a decent amount of plays, favorites, and comments. If these tallies haven't exceeded double digits, people are going to skip your content. This makes it pretty difficult to get those initial few thousand views.
Buying these initial metrics is actually a pretty good way of building a foundation. This won't bring in any new followers off the bat, but it creates social proof at the least. Even though you didn't get any real plays, you've drastically increased your chances. Organic plays will start rolling in at a much quicker rate.
Social proof not only helps with bringing in new listeners from SoundCloud, but other areas too. Having a lot of plays can also help you out with advertising and sponsorship. A few thousand fake plays can actually be a huge difference maker here.
The most important thing to do is continue to adapt to updates and changes. SoundCloud will continue to introduce new features, which could make it easier to succeed. Of course, they could always make changes that invalidate methods you used. Either way, stay on top of it and keep an eye on any changes SoundCloud makes. If you want more tips, check out our Promoting Tips page.
As long as you're proactive, you shouldn't have too much trouble getting discovered. Good luck, and keep at it!
Date: February 9, 2016 / Categories: Getting Discovered, Tips, / Author: Viv
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