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How Indie Artists Can Use SoundCloud for Career Growth

SoundCloud has struggled for some time. Then, the company decided to go all out on elevating the indie artists on the platform. That turned out to be one of SoundCloud's greatest moves.

There's a race on who can become the standard music-based social media platform. Currently, SoundCloud is in the lead; it's the go-to place for independent artists.

SoundCloud's co-founder announced at the end of last year that there are now 180 million SoundCloud users per month. On top of that, SoundCloud artists churn out over 10 hours of music every minute.

How Indie Artists Can Use SoundCloud for Career Growth

That said, it's highly recommended for aspiring music artists give SoundCloud a go. That may be a little daunting, especially if you don't know what to do. There's one thing some people often forget: the competition. Each user can listen to only one song at once. And there are plenty of artists on the platform. So, you are fighting for the listener's attention. 

That said, you need to ensure you stand out. Else, your tracks will be there, but they will be untouched. 

Don't worry. We are here to help you. This article will teach you the best practices on SoundCloud. You will learn some helpful tips that will help you find success on the platform.

Building a Solid Follower Base

Creating a SoundCloud account only takes a few minutes. The same goes for uploading songs. However, you can't say the same for building a solid follower base. Accomplishing that takes a lot of time and effort. 

So, how can you increase your followers fast? One of the best ways to do it is by engaging with your listeners. SoundCloud allows users to comment on tracks – even on specific timestamps. That's how SoundCloud users express their opinions about a part of the song. 

Read those to collect feedback, and listen to them. Reply to the comments and have healthy discussions. People love creators who appreciate their input. Also, engaging with your audience brings you closer to your listeners. That's a key to getting loyal fans that will support you through thick and thin.

Using other social media channels to build your follower base is also recommended. Let your Instagram or Twitter followers know of your SoundCloud account. Put your SoundCloud page link to your bio. Additionally, promote your music through those channels.

You can embed tracks on other sites to make more people aware of your SoundCloud page. Also, that way, people can play your music without visiting SoundCloud.

You can also send your SoundCloud followers to your website and other social channels by linking them to your account. Then, they can visit those channels to get important updates like when would be the next release or, perhaps, a tour. 

To add links to your added channels:

How Indie Artists Can Use SoundCloud for Career Growth
  1. Go to your SoundCloud profile page.
  2. Click “Edit.”
  3. At the bottom of the pop-up panel, click “Add links.”
  4. Add all relevant links individually, then click “Save.”

Allowing Downloads

Some artists allow users to download all of their songs for free. Nothing is wrong with that. But don't be pressured to do the same; it's not the norm. Furthermore, it's not for everyone.

Your music is your product; sometimes, you need to actually sell it – as in making the listeners pay to download it. So, you may not want to make all of your songs on SoundCloud downloadable. If you do, then no one would buy what's in the store.

However, occasionally allowing downloads is encouraged. Your listeners can consider the freebie a reward for following you on SoundCloud. That will make them come back to your page more often.

You may be thinking about how that affects how SoundCloud pays you. The platform pays you based on the number of plays you have. So, what happens when your fans play your songs while they are offline? Would that count?

Yes, they would count. SoundCloud treats plays of downloaded count the same as online plays – which is why so many artists still buy SoundCloud plays. Once the user connects to the internet, SoundCloud would add the offline play count to your total play count. 

Learn More About Your Fans 

Suppose you followed the tips above and you've been on SoundCloud for quite a while. You already have a sizable follower base. Then, it's time to take your SoundCloud journey to the next level.

You can upgrade to SoundCloud Pro. It's a subscription that costs $8.40 per month. First and foremost, this tier gives you unlimited hours of upload. Meanwhile, a Basic account only has 3 hours of upload. So, it's worthwhile.

Also, a SoundCloud Pro subscription allows you to make money from plays.

That's not all. A SoundCloud Pro allows you to learn more about your listeners. It will enable you to see valuable insights, such as stats about your page and listeners. That includes play and download counts, where your listeners are from, and who they are.

Why is that information valuable? You can use that to know who you are reaching with your music. Likewise, it lets you see who you need to reach out to. Knowing your demographics is hugely beneficial to your music career.

How Indie Artists Can Use SoundCloud for Career Growth

You can use that to plan your tours, concerts, or mini-concerts. Go to where you have lots of fans. That will surely make the event a success. Then, the news about the event will attract curious listeners. 

But let's calm down a little. Before you plan events like those, focus on building a fan base first. However, keep this vision in mind. Knowing what you want to do in the future will give you motivation.


SoundCloud is the best social media tool for indie artists. We don't know how long it will stay the same. But nothing threatens it at the moment, especially after changing its payment model to fan-powered royalties. That said, it's best for indie artists to know the best practices on SoundCloud. Of course, learning those is not enough. You need to apply them to your strategies to guarantee success on the platform.

Date: December 6, 2022 / Categories: Getting Discovered, / Author: Rich Drees


Rich Drees

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