Increase Your Exposure: Streaming Music

By NationWide Source
Estimated reading time: 2 minutes

A confession: I like physical media. I back up sessions on hard drives. I have an extensive CD collection. When I’m near a record player, you can bet it will be in use. That said, I’m not stuck in the past. I’ve grown quite fond of backing up to cloud drives, and as a consumer I often use music-streaming sites like Spotify.

As a professional artist, you have to keep up on industry trends to get your music out there. You could have the best songs and the tightest band, but if no one hears your songs, none of that will matter.

One of the biggest trends right now is streaming music. If you’re not familiar with it, here’s a quick overview:

When you sell your music, whether in physical distribution or in online sales and downloads, you get the profits and the consumer keeps the music. Streaming is different; the most common sites are closer to traditional radio play, just online and tailored to each listener. Listeners use a service, free or paid, to access the music but do not own the music. This means that they can listen to the artists and songs they like, discover related artists, retain valuable hard drive space, and not spend (much) money on music.

If you want access to these listeners, you must make your songs available on these streaming sites. On the plus side, there is usually a small amount of money paid to the you each time someone streams your song. While the profits from streaming services are not as ideal as album sales, the streaming services can offer increased exposure. As a user of streaming sites, I often check out similar artists suggested by the service. Some services automatically play similar artists. If these listeners like your music, they might regularly listen to you (more money) or might look up where to buy your music and do so (more money).

The major streaming outlets right now are Spotify, Pandora, and ReverbNation. There have been and will be others; be sure to keep updated on which is rising or falling in popularity.

If you’re still a fan of physical media and live performances like I am, that’s great. There’s still an audience for that, but it’s no longer the whole story. Now that you know about streaming music, you can decide whether or not this type of music distribution is a good fit for you.

Have you put your music on a streaming service? Has doing so resulted in increased sales or fans? Which service would you recommend?

See also: Spotify, Pandora and Streaming Music: Should You Post Your Music?, Top Five Websites for Streaming Your Music, Five Websites for Selling Your Music Online, Make Money Selling Your Music, Finding Music Distributors


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