As independent artists, music submission services are essential to any DIY music marketing plan. You’ve put your heart and soul into your tracks, so it only makes sense to have the eyes and ears of listeners and curators everywhere on your latest release.
But with so many playlisting options out there, it can be hard to choose the right service—and audience—to send your music to, especially with a limited budget. So, how do you start?
In this article, we’ll look at the mechanics behind some of the most used submission platforms so you can choose the best ones for your campaign.
What is a music submission service?
Not everyone can pay for their own publicist. But outside of common networking strategies, there are plenty of online platforms to get your latest release seen by publishers, blogs, playlist curators and even indie record labels!
From Submithub to Musosoup to Groover, these services are super accessible, making it easy to share your music with experts to expand your reach to new fans and listeners worldwide.
Why use a music submission app?
If you want your music featured on blogs, playlists and more, music submission platforms simplify the complicated world of PR and marketing—so you don’t have to stress about cold emailing or messaging curators all day.
- Connect you with the most relevant blogs, curators, promoters, and influencers so you’ll have the highest chance of getting coverage.
- Are a great way to flesh out your electronic press kit (EPK). A simple review can turn the tide in getting gigs in venues and festivals and even getting covered by some of the best music reviewers out there!
- Give your music the momentum it needs to get picked up by Spotify and Apple Music’s algorithmic playlists, including Discover Weekly and more.
And most of all, it saves you time!
It’s easy to get carried away paying way too much for these services
But be careful! It’s easy to get carried away paying way too much for these services (I’ve been there). Even with SubmitHub’s free option, it’s never a good idea to put too many eggs in one basket.
The best music promotion strategies are ones with diverse marketing initiatives. If you’re struggling to map out your campaign, check out our essential guide to promoting your music in 2022.
The best music submission services for your release
In 2021, I was inspired to write a cute little jingle for a local Montreal-based seltzer brand called “Le Seltzer.”
With a tiny budget of under $100 for a month-long campaign, I decided to try out some of the most popular submission and playlisting platforms used by independent artists today.
With a tiny budget of under $100 for a month-long campaign, I decided to try out some of the most popular submission and playlisting platforms.
Here’s few services that stuck out in particular:
Users can upload music videos and songs—released, and unreleased—and have the option to choose between the platform’s free or paid service.
You’ll need to choose from their list of curators and influencers to pitch from, which can be time-consuming.
With premium credits, you’ll pretty much be guaranteed to have your music listened to (curators are paid to listen to the first 20 seconds of your tracks)—especially when you request feedback during the submission process.
Make sure to choose the genres and moods relevant to your music, so you have the highest chance of getting approved.
Receiving feedback is an essential way to build on your campaigns.
Here’s the thing: Just because you’ve paid for your music to get covered, it doesn’t mean that you’ll get featured. But, receiving feedback is an essential way to build on your campaigns—and can be a great stepping stone in improving as an artist overall.
While SubmitHub is the defacto service for today’s indie artists, it’s also oversaturated with submissions, so expect a lot of competition to get featured. Luckily, there are some fantastic alternatives like…
Next on the list is Musosoup, a homegrown independent PR service, that owns the music blog Lost in the Manor.
Compared to SubmitHub, Musosoup is a paid platform (£24 per campaign) that automatically submits your release to all* of its international curators.
To start, you’ll need to build your campaign using its online submission form. That includes providing a pitch to give curators an idea of who you are and what they’re listening to. If you have a press release, this makes things easy (and if you need help, there are plenty of pros on the LANDR Network that can help you write a great press release).
Once submitted, Musosoup will review your tracks with their team to ensure that it’s good enough to be sent out to its curators. You won’t need to pay the campaign fee until your campaign is approved.
With your campaign underway, you’ll receive offers from blogs, playlisters and magazines, letting you choose which ones you prefer to be featured on.
One caveat is that some higher-profile curators will charge additional fees for more premium coverage (even though they’ll often leave a free option).
Note: You can opt-out of paid offers from the get-go by choosing the Coverage option when building your campaign.
Another worthy mention is the Paris-based music submission service Groover.
It’s a great way to get coverage in France and Europe—especially if the type of music you make has an international following (I make a lot of dream-pop and shoegaze, a genre with a large European audience).
Like Submithub, Groover will target the most relevant curators for your music. What makes Groover stand out is its list of curators. Rather than labels, playlisters, and magazines, you’ll come across a wider range of professionals like publishers, promoters and mentors!
Reaching out to most curators costs 2-4 Grooviz tokens per 7-day campaign. Each token costs €1. If you don’t receive a response, you’ll get your tokens back so you can submit them to another curator.
Hot tip: If you distribute your music with LANDR you should submit your music for playlisting on L&R, the LANDR playlist. We update it quarterly and actively promote it on Spotify!
Pushing your music out there can be a hard thing to do.
And, when it comes to getting serious traction in the music sphere, not everyone can shell out the cash for top-tier playlisting companies and publicists.
But with the right tools, strategies, and services, you’ll have your music reaching new fans in no time!