Its Not As Hard As You Think
Before I dove in, I thought it was going to be really tough. I thought there was some sacred procedure to getting a hold of the right people. And honestly I wondered if I could do it without a label or radio promoter. Turns out radio station people especially receptionists are really quite nice and open to listening to you. Heck! Maybe I just had good luck.
Now dont get me wrong, Im not saying its easy to get your songs on the radio. Im also not saying you dont need a label or extra promotion help to get you on the radio. Thats entirely for you to decide. I do know that its very easy to find the contacts to the right people, and I also know that although I may have had a little so-called luck, that this process is significantly easier and more efficient when you have 1) money or 2) a label.
With even as little as just a couple hundred bucks you can pay to distribute your songs through DMDS yourself. Or you can pay a couple thousand bucks to hire a radio promoter who already has all of the connections. But this article explains how to get your music on the radio with no money, no promoter, and no label, so lets talk about that.
How To Get Your Music Played On Siriusxm Radio
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Have you ever sat around listening to music on the radio and thought to yourself, wait a second, how can I get MY songs played on this station? Whether its satellite, internet, out-to-sea pirate radio or your local college FM station, getting your music played on the radio certainly isnt easy, but there is hope! With some solid research and a lot of perseverance, getting air play is certainly within your reach as an independent artist, especially if you follow these four steps.
Write Informed Personal Emails
The more you can do to set yourself apart from the slew of other artists emailing radio stations, the better.
So, be sure that you arent copying the same impersonal email to every radio station. This is easy to pick up on and it sends the message that you dont really care about who supports you. Youre just sending your music to as many people as possible and hoping someone takes interest.
Instead, take the time to do a little research into who youre emailing. Learn the names of the person attached to an email and check out some of the stations radio programs and past artists theyve featured.
Mentioning that youve heard their work and suggesting how your music aligns with what theyve done in the past will put you on their good side right from the start.
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Choose The Right Radio And Opt For New Networks Of Influence
Every radio station has its own audience and therefore has a musical genre of reference. The radio station you want to present your song to is therefore also an important choice. For example, it is useless to go and propose a reggae track to a radio station specializing in metal. Choose radio stations that play tracks in the same style as your music and target the ones you are going to approach in a relevant way to maximize your chances of being played.
Fewer and fewer people are listening to radio in its traditional form and a whole new form of online radio is gaining momentum and providing a new outlet for emerging artists. Thanks to an efficient and particularly affordable concept, Groover offers you the opportunity to contact the best radio stations, media and labels of your choice with the guarantee of being listened to, receiving feedback and visibility!
In addition to this direct contact via the platform, Groover has had an official partnership with Radio France for several months now to simplify the discovery of the most promising talents on Groover and to act as a real springboard for your musical career.
Article written by Amy Cimpaye in its original version, translated by Mackenzie Leighton
How To Get Your Song On The Radio
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Whether you’re a solo artist or in a band, one of the best ways to get your music out there is to get it played on the radio. Even if you start small at a local radio station, it can lead to national exposure. Sending in your songs can seem like a daunting task, but with some know-how it can be worth it!
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Respect The Radio Format
Another important factor that can maximize your chance of getting a song on the radio is optimizing your song’s length.
Your track should be somewhere between 2:30 and 4:00 minutes long. If it’s not, your chances of getting airplay will be severely limited.
Obviously, you shouldn’t restrict your artistic creativity with every song, but keeping perspective on the specific track you wish to pitch to a radio station is important. A shorter, catchy song is your best bet.
If you have a longer song that you still want to hit the airwaves, it might be wise to create a “radio edit.” This just means you should make a version of your song that will be suitable for radio airplay that respects the preferred format.
Quick note: Producing a radio edit is also a great idea if your song has a few moments of extreme profanity.
How To Get Your Music On Pandora Radio
As an artist/band, we understand how vital it is for you to get your music out into the world. Music distribution helps to grow your fan base and following, and gives you the confidence to keep making music.
Pandora Radio is a great option for you, as it has quickly become a go-to place to discover new music. It boasts an incredible amount of active users Pandora Radio allows you to personalise your music experience by customising your own station based on your favourite artists and preferred musical genre.
As you can see, it is extremely worthwhile to have your music played on this service, as there are a huge number of listeners just waiting for new music! In this article, we will explain everything you need to know about how to get your music on Pandora, as it can be extremely beneficial to furthering your music career.
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Dont Neglect The Smaller Stations
Ive already pointed out that getting your music on commercial radio can be an uphill battle. You can try submitting if you want to, but most of the time it wont lead anywhere.
Sending to college, community, and internet radio is usually the best place to start, as it is easier to get your music played on these types of stations.
Youll still need to do your research and find the right stations to build relationships with, but your success rate will generally be much higher with smaller stations that arent owned by large media conglomerates, especially when youre just getting started.
Every time a station plays your music, you can add it to your resume. And airplay can lead to more sales, streams, and gigging opportunities. Im not saying that youll suddenly receive an avalanche of requests, but it can add up over time.
Its easy to get into the habit of doing things only when you need to. But oftentimes this doesnt help you build momentum. If you stay consistent with recording new material and submitting to stations, you can set yourself up for future success.
What Regions Do You Need To Be Touring
…you can tie in your radio promotion to a tour, but its not a necessity.
Ive worked with several artists who got their first taste of radio play in areas of the country theyd never been to before. Others got their first series of stations across the ocean before stations in the United States started playing them. So you can tie in your radio promotion to a tour, but its not a necessity.
The benefit for both of these types of artists is that they gained new music fans from the process, people who are actively reaching out and engaging with them because they heard the music on the radio.
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So How Do You Get Your Song On The Radio
In a nutshell, starting with a high-quality recording of a well-written song is the most important thing you can do to get your music aired on any station. With this in hand the rest comes down to properly building relationships with the radio stations you hope will play your music.
Take the time to research stations dealing with your genre and what format they ask songs to be submitted. Use this information to write personal emails and follow-up if you dont hear from them in a week or two.
Finally, dont forget to register your music with a performance rights organization early on so you can start collecting royalties once you get some airtime.
Dont be discouraged if you dont get much notice right off the bat. This sort of work can take time as its all about building relationships and respect from certain stations.
That said, youll start to see a positive outcome if youre persistent, patient and calculated. The best part of it all is that the more airtime you get, the more people will hear your songs and the better chance you have of getting played on another radio station in the future.
Take Quotas Into Account
Think of quotas- if you have a song in the language of your country, youll have a better chance of getting it onto national radios! Yes, its true. Its a criteria you have to take into serious consideration if you want your song to be played on the radio. For example in France theres a quota imposed by the CSA which is designed to protect French-language songs from the invasion of Anglo-Saxon pop songs that are flooding the airwaves.
The law of February 1, 1994 requires private radio stations to broadcast, since January 1, 1996, at significant listening hours, 40% of French songs, at least half of which must come from new talent or new productions .
By French-language song, the CSA means any work with a text performed or recited primarily in French or in a regional French language. And by new talent, any artist who has not yet obtained two separate gold record-certified albums.
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Do You Promote A Song Or An Album
The best way to know which the station prefers is to ask when you contact them. The station or program will let you know what they want. Youll also be able to tell which the station/program prefers when you listen to their programming.
In your research you should see the website of the station and know if they have a submission form on their page. Their form might send you to a different submission portal, such as Music Submit, DMDS, Music Xray, or Fluence.io. These are services that provide a submission gateway for music media, and are also a great way to submit music to multiple stations/curators at one time.
Become An Active Fan Of Your Target Radio Stations
Once youve found a set of suitable radio stations to target, become an active fan of each station for several weeks before submitting anything.
Listen to the show, become active on their social media and engage with the other artists. Its important to take a genuine interest in the station and not expect them to directly provide you with anything in return in other words, dont push your music on them at this stage.
However, this approach can really make you stand out from the hundreds of other artists when you finally do submit.
Remember that independent radio stations are often operating without any significant income and are relying on the artists themselves to keep the show going. Therefore, theyre much more likely to give sustained airplay to artists who are willing to promote and support the station.
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Top 14 Radio Directories To Submit Your Station And Grow Your Audience In 2021
Your dream has come true. Youve started an internet radio station. But now what?
It doesnt make sense to spend hours broadcasting and have just your mother and girlfriend/boyfriend listening to you, right? So, the big question is: how do you get new listeners to your internet radio station? It can be time-consuming and a bit frustrating trying to promote your station and increase the number of listeners but there is an easy way to do it. And that is to submit your internet station to radio directories. But let us first explain the basics:
You Need A Good Story
Its important to show how your story connects with the stations audience base, and even with the music curators who are choosing the music. This is another reason why research is such an important step.
Read up on all that you can about the people who are making the radio so that you can find common ground. Other tips on what to say in your message can be taken from this post:How to Promote Your Music to Bloggers
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Have A Media/ Radio Servicing Kit Ready
Nick: In a nutshell, we want NEW music and a BRIEF press release or fact sheet that gives us some info on you as an artist. Just a small bit of info and some great new tunes is all we need, dont feel like you need to include a thesis dissecting your album track-by-track or a folder of glossy band photos. If youre sending an EP or an album, highlight the focus tracks or the upcoming singles, as we cant always listen to the whole record immediately.
If youre digitally servicing us music, email us a link to a wav download and if possible an online stream. The stream lets us listen to it instantly, while the wav link means we have a broadcast quality version in case we love it so much we want to put it straight on air. NEVER email us an mp3 or a wav as an email attachment, our inboxes are bursting at the seams with big files!
If youre servicing us physically, make sure the CD is an audio CD , is labelled correctly and is of broadcast quality .
Adam: For a Physical service: Youll need to organise around a minimum of 4-5 CDs to the key programs you think would play the release. Put these all in one parcel marked to the music director and print out some bios as well. Mark which shows youd like these given to. Live near the station/in the same city? Find the address an pop in.
Whats Special About Online Radio Stations
Mainstream radio is boring. Its not uncommon to hear the same song 15 times a day .
Online radio stations take music curation very seriously. Theyre the new authority for music. Plus theres no rotating playlist.
Theyre diverse, independent and community-first. Yknow, all that important stuff that everyone forgot about.
They also have the perfect balance of local emerging talent and international artists.
our programming team is working hard to find artists doing things that are interesting to us, not necessarily based on followers and numbers.
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What To Send To Radio Stations
Whilst there are some radio shows that will play rough demos on air and offer their feedback, these are few and far between. Generally, you need to send radio stations a finished version of your track and it needs to be a decent quality recording. Swearing and offensive content usually wont go down well when broadcast so make sure you send radio-friendly versions! Ultimately, a great song will stand out and be in with a chance of getting played, but a professional approach can help you move to the top of the DJs listening pile.
You dont need to accompany your track with loads of unnecessary additional extras, but some brief info will help a DJ get an idea of your background and also provide them with some info to work with when they introduce your track on air. Also, mention other stations that have played your tracks, and for local shows, give them details of any upcoming gigs in the area that they may be able to plug.
Create A Hit List Of Suitable Stations
Whilst it might sound obvious, youd be amazed how many bands and artists fail before theyve even started by submitting to a poorly-targeted radio station.
Simply put, if you are a newly-established death metal band, dont submit material to a hip-hop station that exclusively promotes established artists.
Make sure you take the time to research each station so you can make sure theyre playing artists that are similar to you in terms of both size and genre.
In addition, take some time to learn a little bit about each station to see how you can tailor your pitch are they a family-run station? Do they have any connections with other industry operators? Are they only interested in promoting artists from a certain area?
Here are some of the best places to search for suitable radio stations that promote independent musicians:
- Twitter hashtags/trends
- Other artists social media channels
Compile a spreadsheet with the name of each suitable station, their social media links and a couple of pieces of information about the station. Thisll give you something to refer back to once youve done the research and are ready to submit.
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