Spotify has been a terrific resource for artists looking to connect with fans and make a living. With features like Spotify for Artists, musicians are provided with many options that can help them create a fan base and get helpful insights into the statistics that matter. There are more than 420 million monthly active users on Spotify, so this is a great way to gain exposure as an emerging artist.
Additionally, remember how vital Spotify stats are to the music business. If you are doing well on Spotify, a record company, management, or booking agency could scout you. Regardless of how you introduce yourself, they will almost certainly ask you how your music is performing on Spotify. So, if you have big plans for your artistic future, this is the perfect place to start.
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Can An Independent Artist Upload Music To Spotify?
If you are thinking about putting your music on streaming platforms, the only thing keeping you from doing that is the fact that you are not able to do it on your own. Because Spotify does not directly partner with independent artists and labels, you must contact a digital music distributor. Since streaming services provide for the majority of new music consumption, digital distributors still fulfill the essential purpose of getting your music heard. Nevertheless, now they are responsible for adding it to streaming services like Spotify, too.
How to Choose a Distributor to Upload to Spotify
Choosing the right distributor that successfully fulfills your needs is crucial. The great thing is that a music distributor will simultaneously upload your music to various platforms, so in addition to Spotify, your music will be placed on iTunes, Apple Music, Amazon Music, Tidal, Pandora, Google Play Music, etc. You may increase the overall amount of streams for your music by distributing it among other streaming services.
There are many different distribution services available, each with a range of pricing and added features. Some of these could be familiar to you. To mention a few, there are DistroKid, CD Baby, TuneCore, Ditto Music, AWAL, etc. And yes, you will typically have to pay a fee to work with a distributor. But don’t worry; once your music is available on streaming services, you’ll start attracting streams and start getting royalties from these streams. Of course, some distributors don’t charge the fee but take a percentage of your royalties. However, it’s better to keep 100% of your music to yourself than to avoid paying for the services you are provided with.
What Is Required From Artists Before Track Submission?
Spotify has some specific guidelines and technical requirements that independent artists should consider before submitting their music to a digital music distributor. Once you’ve chosen your desired distro and finished your registration, you’ll be prepared to begin the music uploading procedure. The file format for digital music may need to meet various specifications depending on the distribution.
It goes without saying that you should upload the best possible lossless file(s) of your music. Because Spotify Premium streams at 320kbps, which is higher quality than what you receive on other platforms, it has more listeners than its rivals. It would help if you first kept in mind that your music must be properly mastered and mixed. Make sure to provide audio files that are mastered for streaming and not for CD, vinyl, or similar. You should upload high-definition (16-bit, 44.1 kHz) WAV audio files, and avoid MP3.
It would help if you also kept in mind:
- Only music for which you have the master recording rights may be uploaded.
- A sample-based song requires the owners’ permission.
- In general, copyrighted tracks shouldn’t be published without the consent of the copyright holders.
- Illegal, hateful, or explicit content is not appropriate for Spotify.
What about covers and remixes on Spotify?
If you want to make a remix and the original song is not your own, it will be necessary to obtain the permission of the authors, composers, and publishers as well as the owners of the original audio recording (frequently it’s the record label that created the track). It qualifies as a remix if you’ve included some or all of the original recording in your song.
If the songwriters of a song you want to cover are not American citizens, you may distribute your release, but the owners of the original rights always have the right to ask that your cover song be taken down. On the other hand, a compulsory license from a collecting society will be required. Your song will be regarded as a cover version only if the lyrics, melody, and basic arrangement of your song are exactly the same as those of the original, except for the fact that you are a performer. A song is not regarded as a cover as soon as the lyrics, melody, or fundamental arrangement are altered.
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What About The Album Cover?
Other crucial factors to consider are album artwork and music video trailers. Spotify has particular specifications for cover art. Make sure the artwork is in a TIFF, PNG, or JPG format and at least 640×640 pixels. However, some distros may have extra requirements beyond what Spotify requests, like higher pixel counts and similar. For instance, some distributors will reject artwork with names, trademarks, inappropriate language, or imagery. Others allow the titles of the pieces or the artists’ names to appear on the artwork.
You must ensure that your artwork complies with all the specifications of your preferred distribution in order to prevent any delays in the delivery of your music. You should, however, also carefully review the guidelines set forth by your distribution regarding what is and is not permitted. You could also think about using Spotify’s Canvas for creating a video cover for a track.
What Information Do You Need To Provide Regarding Your Music?
Suppose you’re uploading a single piece of music to Spotify. In that case, this will simply be the title of your song or instrumental piece. With a few more tracks, you’ll have an EP or album—you’ll need to fill out the fields for each track and name the album. Be aware that different labels define what counts as a single, EP, or album in different terms. However, this has no bearing on the upload procedure.
Your chosen distributor will inquire whether the music is a remix, a cover, or an original piece; or whether it is a studio version, an instrumental, or a live version. They may also be interested in the recording year if it differs from the release year. You must also indicate whether your song has explicit lyrics. From a list provided by the distributor, you must choose the genre or style of your music. You must include an ISRC (International Standard Recording Code) if the track(s) have been released before to identify your track and link royalties.
On DistroKid, TuneCore, CD Baby (or your chosen distributor), thoroughly fill out all the required fields before clicking the final “submit” button. Then, double-check everything.
How Long Do Artists Need To Wait For The Release?
Your music will move from the distributor to the streaming service at a different pace. In light of this, it is imperative to upload your music well in advance if you plan to release it on a specific date. On most distribution platforms, you can also choose a specific release date to give yourself more time to advertise and pitch your music to Spotify playlists.
How Do You Earn Money From Spotify?
Basically, the artist is paid royalties (based on the number of streams) when a song is played on a streaming platform. The answer to the question of how much Spotify actually pays per stream is not simple. Although it varies depending on a number of variables, it is estimated to cost between $0.008 and $0.90 per stream.
Streaming payouts come in different forms:
- In exchange for the right to reproduce the music, songwriters and their publishers are given mechanical royalties.
- In exchange for the right to perform their music publicly, songwriters and their publishers are given public performance royalties. Every stream, even if it’s just being listened to on a phone, is regarded as a public performance because the listener doesn’t technically own any of the music.
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What To Do After The Upload?
You’re mistaken if you think your work is done once your song or album is finally out on Spotify. There are many other things you can do as well, like interact with fans on social media or make an artist playlist, to draw listeners to your Spotify profile, but you can’t do it without the next step. As soon as the release is on Spotify, you should demand your artist profile through Spotify for Artists. You will be able to do this only after the first official track release. Expect the process to take some time if you want to claim your Spotify for Artists page because Spotify needs to verify your identity first.
However, obtaining your Spotify account directly through a distributor or your label’s distributor takes just a moment. Spotify does not need to go through its drawn-out process since distros like CD Baby and Distrokid can instantly verify your identity.
After this crucial point, you can go to the next step: create a good music promotion plan and get your music on Spotify playlists.
Spotify Playlists Are Here To Help
Any musician releasing music should prioritize getting it onto well-known Spotify playlists. There are three types of these playlists: Spotify-curated playlists, independent playlists, and playlists from major labels. Pitching your music to the first two is relatively easy. Still, unfortunately, the major label ones are almost impossible to catch.
Through your Spotify for Artists page, you can submit your music for the official Spotify playlist. Three to six weeks prior to its scheduled release, upload your song to Spotify before sending it to the playlist editors. Upon the track’s upload, go to your Spotify for Artist profile.
Then, at the top of the page, click on the “Upcoming” tab and you will have to fill out a detailed form that will allow you to promote your track to the curators. After that, all you need to do is wait.
Independent playlists, which casual users and community members create, are another excellent resource that Spotify provides. These playlists are technically unofficial, but many have tens of thousands of subscribers. Sending your track to these curators and tastemakers after it has been publicly released can greatly increase the number of plays.
You can pitch your music directly to curators. Still, to do so you need to research and find out which curators are available for cooperation. These curators’ official job title is an editor if you’re searching on LinkedIn or other websites like it. From there, you can write them a brief email or message outlining your track.
This is something we can help you with. A platform for music promotion called SoundCampaign links Spotify curators and artists. Using this platform, you can get the tools you need to connect with the playlist curators who will eventually feature your track. These professional curators will carefully analyze your track ahead of time while also providing helpful feedback about your song. The procedure is straightforward: simply go to the SoundCampaign website, click the “Create campaign” button, fill out your information, and launch your campaign! We encourage you to create a bright artistic future!