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Written by Ramsey Brown.
As you are probably aware, music streaming has completely taken over the way people now discover and consume music. If an artist does not have a profile on platforms such as YouTube or Spotify, it would be essentially impossible for him or her to become successful. The entire music scene is dependent on the internet and learning how to use it to your advantage has a huge impact on a musician's career.
Music streaming services have now made it easier than ever to share music and increase overall visibility across the globe. Which is why it is now so important for artists to hone into the many benefits these services provide. Whether you are a seasoned music professional or just starting out your career, learning the ins and outs of streaming platforms is crucial to prosperity in the music industry. There are many more tools that websites such as Spotify can provide to artists beyond just it’s music sharing purposes.
By implementing Spotify’s many marketing functions, it could be the difference between you being a well-known musician and being just a small name artist. One marketing function in particular that we are going to discuss in this article is Spotify’s ‘pre-save’ campaigns. These pre-save campaigns have become increasingly popular in the past few years, especially for those looking to boost their presence on the app. They can be thought out as the digital streaming equivalent of yesterday’s pre-orders — ensuring that once a track or album officially drops on Spotify, the fan will be notified and it will instantly be added to their music library.
It may seem like a fairly simple concept, however you can’t just log on to your Spotify account and create a pre-save campaign just like that. There are many more details that go into doing this properly and effectively, which is exactly what we are going to share with you — all the information you need to know about pre-save campaigns including the benefits, how to set one up, and how to actually promote it to your audience. Once you have read through this entire article, you will be highly knowledgeable on what Spotify pre-save campaigns are and know exactly how to use them to begin benefitting you and your music career.
A Spotify pre-save campaign is a marketing tool used through the app to generate buzz around the release of a new single, album, or EP. Although it does more than just create buzz, it actually allows for fans to save the artist’s music before it is released and as soon as it is, it will be added to their music library so they can instantly begin streaming it.
In other words, these pre-save campaigns are a kind of incentive that artists give to their most loyal followers to start saving the song or album they are going to release long before the release date. Through this tactic, it ensures that the number of streams your song receives will be much higher than if you were to just upload it to the platform with no prior marketing behind it.
Just like back in the day when people bought and listened to actual physical CDs — musicians would create pre-order campaigns so their most loyal fans could buy their album before it was released. This benefitted the fans because they wouldn’t have to worry about the album possibly selling out before they could buy, nor did they have to wait in line at a record store to get it. This also benefited the artists because it created hype around the release and ensured people were excited about their new music, increasing the likelihood of them sharing it with their friends.
If you have been using social networks professionally or follow the news about how social media works, you should be aware of the complex system of algorithms that control the level of popularity that users can generate throughout the different platforms.
Once you are aware of these algorithms Spotify and others streaming apps have in place, you can then find ways to leverage it to your advantage and reach more targeted listeners. Algorithm-based streaming platforms are all about data and measurable engagement. Essentially, platforms like Spotify pay very close attention to how many people listen to your track, as well as how long and how often they listen for.
Streaming platforms also pay attention to album and song likes and saves. So, on release day you want to get as many people to stream your album as possible. Early engagement is a huge factor to Spotify’s algorithms because it shows that your track is quickly becoming favored by many people. When you have a lot of action around your new track, it then increases the chances of it landing on one of Spotify’s algorithmic or editorial playlists — playlists which have millions of daily listeners.
This is precisely where the importance of Spotify pre-save campaigns comes into play. It is a surefire way to generate buzz and awareness around your new music and increase your overall number of streams, likes, plays, and saves. This then gives you a better position to hopefully get placed on Spotify’s widely listened to playlists, alongside some of the biggest names in the entire industry.
Now, how do you actually set up a Spotify pre-save campaign and use it correctly? The truth is that not much is said about them and if you are an inexperienced musician you probably don't know how to activate them, nor do you know all the benefits they will bring you in the future. No need to worry though, below we are going to walk you through step by step on how exactly you can create your own Spotify pre-save campaign and also how you can properly promote it to your audience. Take note!
First thing's first before releasing any new music — you need to find a competent music distribution company to distribute your music and make it an official and legal digital release. Before you can begin creating a pre-save campaign through Spotify, you must have a legit distributor in place if you don’t have one already. Once you have set up your releases through a distributor such as CDbaby, TuneCore, or one of the many others, then you can begin strategizing all the promotional campaigns you want.
All around, Distributors make the life of a musician much easier. With a good distribution company, you won’t ever have to worry about manually uploading your music on streaming platforms and you can solely focus on your release plans and organizing ways to create buzz among your audience.
If you want to start a Spotify pre-save campaign officially and without any problems, the first thing you will have to do is to claim your Artist Profile on the platform. If you haven’t done this already or are unaware of how to do so, click the button below to read a thorough explanation on how to claim your Spotify for Artists account so you can begin moving forward with your pre-save campaign.
Also, your music distributor should be able to assist you with the process of claiming your Spotify for Artists profile or help solve any problems that you may run into while doing so.
Choosing a release date may seem like a simple task but truthfully, there is great importance behind picking the right date to ensure your release has the most success. First, you’ll want to give yourself plenty of time in advance to promote, somewhere between one and two months is usually the sweet spot. Also, you’ll need to go on your distributor’s website and submit your release date and information. Keep in mind that depending on your distributor, it could take anywhere up to 3-4 weeks for it to process fully and get sent out to streaming stores.
After you’ve submitted your release information to your distributor, you will also then have to wait for it to be delivered and accepted by Spotify. This is normally a fairly quick turnaround but occasionally Spotify may take up to a week to receive the track, which goes back to the point of giving yourself enough time in advance before dropping your new music.
Once your release is received by Spotify, you will receive an email directly from them via your Spotify for Artists account confirming that your track is ready for release. You’ll also get an email from your distributor confirming that they’ve delivered your track to other streaming platforms. Once you’ve received these messages, you can now begin the process of setting up your pre-save campaign through Spotify.
*Pro Tip: Releasing new music on a Friday gives artists the best chance to maximize their chart potential. Billboard tracks sales from Friday to Thursday each week, so a song or album released on a Friday has the advantage of being tracked for all seven days of the weekly cycle.
To set up a pre-save campaign, you’ll need to get your song’s URI. Spotify URIs are a unique ID that makes it possible for a Spotify pre-save campaign to identify your track within the platform, even if it’s not yet public. You can easily find this code on your Spotify for Artists account once the track has been approved for release.
Once you’ve claimed your Spotify for Artists profile, have submitted your track through your distributor and Spotify is ready for your release, then have gotten your song’s URI code, you are now ready to set up your pre-save campaign! There are many ways to do this, so we are going to provide you with a few different options and services below that you can choose from:
Using SmartURL is one of the most popular and easiest ways to create a pre-save campaign via Spotify. SmartURL is integrated directly with Spotify, so they will collect all the information needed to run your campaign and generate a landing page where fans will save your album before launch. First, you will have to sign up and create a free account on the website. After that, just navigate to the pre-save section on the SmartURL site, fill out the necessary information, and then SmartURL will generate a landing page and link for you to share with your followers.
This music marketing and advertising platform has been trusted by numerous industry professionals. Aside from the many promotional services they offer, their pre-save campaigns are among the most popular. The process is super simple and they even collect up to 50 emails from those who have saved your release. Click here to find out more information to set up your Spotify pre-save campaign smart link through Feature.fm.
• Using Your Distributor
The other option would be to go directly through your distribution company to build your pre-save smart link. Most major distribution companies will have built-in Spotify pre-save campaigns included within their service. Depending on which distributor you use, there is probably an option to create a pre-save campaign through them. Below are a few different routes you could use depending on which distribution company you are signed up with:
HyperFollow is DistroKid’s very own built-in pre-save campaign platform. If Distrokid is your distributor, it would make the most sense to use this program as they will already have all of the information you will need in order to set up the campaign.
Another great option if you are using CDbaby as your distributor is Show.Co. All you have to do is create a show.co account through your CDbaby account. After this head to Show.co account, click “New Campaign” and then click “Spotify Pre-Save”.
Once you have your new Spotify pre-save campaign completely configured, the only thing left for you to do is promote it to your fans. The entire point of creating a pre-save campaign is for it to be a smaller part of a much larger marketing campaign you have in place for your music release.
Your plan should always be geared around building awareness of your new music that is getting ready to drop. Think critically about how you want to market this, a few Instagram and Facebook posts isn’t enough, but you also don’t want to spam your followers either. Use some of the different tactics we've mentioned below to make the most out of sharing and promoting your new music release:
• Social Media
Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok are your best go-to options when it comes to promoting music on social media. Use your pre-save campaign smart link and add it to your Instagram and Facebook stories daily. Hype up your release with catchy posts that include pictures, colors, and artwork to entice your fans. You could even create a short promo video with a small clip of your new song included to leave them wanting and waiting to hear more!
• Email List
Don’t forget about your email list when sharing your latest news as an artist — this is one of the best ways to keep your biggest fans in the loop. Send out an email sharing information about your new music and include the pre-save link so they can easily listen as soon as it drops.
• Press Releases / Music Blogs
Getting press prior to your music release can be extremely beneficial for creating hype around the project and getting your music in front of new audiences. Think about creating a PR blitz, which is a quick and intensive marketing campaign to promote a product (or in this case, your music) to mass media outlets. This will often require some marketing budget behind it, but if you are working with little to no budget, you can always create an artist one-sheet or your own press release and share it with as many media outlets as possible, in hopes that some of them take interest.
Keep in mind that this takes a lot of ground work for it to be effective and works best before the release of an album rather than a single. However, if you can blast your new music to as many DJs, radio stations, music blogs, music industry podcasts, or other music related publications as possible, the greater your chances will be of getting featured. Focus on those that you know support independent artists and have a history of accepting submissions. It's not bad to aim high, just don't exert too much time and effort shooting for big-name companies to play your music when there are plenty of smaller outlets who welcome smaller artists.
All in all, Spotify pre-save campaigns are a fast, easy, cheap, and effective promotional tool that can help your new music skyrocket if done correctly. Remember, your pre-save campaign should be a small part of your overall release plan.
We cannot stress enough how important it is to have a proper and well thought-out marketing campaign in place before releasing new music. Marketing campaigns don’t have to cost you thousands of dollars either, if you truly dig around you’ll find that the internet has countless promotional opportunities and tools that you can take advantage of at little to no cost.
Although Spotify pre-save campaigns are proven to be beneficial on their own, if you are truly looking to get outstanding results then it is highly recommended you consider hiring a professional music marketing and promotion company. At Omari MC, we offer highly effective and customized promotion campaigns that have helped thousands of artists of all sizes and budgets obtain substantial growth. Whether you need to optimize on Spotify, YouTube, Instagram, TikTok, Apple Music, or whatever else, our team of experts will work with you to achieve your goals.
There is only so much one artist can do on their own in terms of marketing initiatives. It requires a trustworthy team behind to truly take your music to the next level. If you are interested in learning more about how Omari MC can help boost your content, streams, likes, followers, and overall reach — check out our products and services on our website or schedule your free music consultation call today!
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