SoundCloud is the largest and most important online music community. It has greatly changed our understanding of digital distribution, giving independent musicians a space to do their own online music promotion on their own. To narrow down the selection, I’ve put together a simple guide with the most useful tools that will help you increase the number of Soundcloud plays. Here are 7 tips to help you get the most out of SoundCloud.
How can fans find your music? One of the best ways is to tag your music. Tagging makes it possible to find you when a listener is looking for you on SoundCloud. The better your tags, the easier you are to find them.
Honesty is the best policy. If you’ve done a Drum & Bass track, tag it with the Drum & Bass genre. Also tagging moods and places can be helpful. Stick to a main genre to simplify matters. More genres do not increase the chance of being found. The more accurate your tags, the easier your music will be discovered by those who want to hear it.
ADD A BUY LINK
Although clicks and likes are nice, they do not bring you the money for the mic you’ve been looking at for a long time.
Luckily, on SoundCloud you can add a ‘buy’ link to your track. Just click on the ‘Metadata’ tab when uploading. Then all you have to do is add the right links: Buy iTunes, Beatport, Juno, Bandcamp or any other place where you sell your music online.
YOUR WAVEFORM AS A HISTORY
SoundCloud allows fans to comment on your waveform. Do you know who should comment on the waveform as well? YOU!
Use the comments to bring your fans and community up to date. Be transparent about the process of creating your track. Get feedback for specific sections.
For example, if you are unsure about a particular section in your track, place a comment at that point of the waveform where the section begins.
Something like “I’m not sure about the bass here. What do you think? “Is perfect for getting feedback from the community.
You do not have to completely finish a track to release it. Publish designs, get feedback, and make better music.
COVERS ARE IMPORTANT
Cover is important, especially on SoundCloud. Your album or track cover represents your music no matter where it is played. When your track appears on a blog, you first see the cover. If you share your track on Facebook, the cover is included. So it’s damn important!
Before someone presses play, your cover must stand out. So use this aspect and choose something that stands for you and your music. It is best to use JPGs or PNGs with at least 800 x 800 pixels.
Hot Tip: Cover is a good reason to invest a little money in your project. If you can not design it yourself, hire a designer or photographer who fits your budget.
USE FACEBOOK TO PROMOTE YOUR SOUNDCLOUD LINKS
Whether you have a profile that shows you are a developing artist, where you can share the link with your new song, or try adding it to groups that share the same musical interests, Facebook can help you find more listeners. Still, if you want to join a group on Facebook, it is recommended to have a bit of activity first there, like offering comments and feedbacks for the rest. And only after you can start introducing your links, together with a comment relevant to the group, just to avoid being seen as spam or ignored.
THE PUBLICATION IS ONLY THE FIRST STEP
Your track is finally finished. You have worked long and hard on it. You are satisfied with the sound and think the track is ready for the world.
So you click, share, and lean back while waiting for the plays. It’s a hit! The track gets attention and people seem to like it.
But after a few days, you notice that the track needs a few more touches …
Maybe someone you admire has left a comment and gave you a hot tip on how to boost the bass.
Or maybe you have mastered it and want a better version on SoundCloud. But when you run it down, you lose all the plays, likes and important feedback …
CREATE A NEW PROFILE PICTURE FOR EACH ALBUM
Your profile picture is a very important piece of information which is presented to everyone who finds you on SoundCloud. To keep interest in your account high, and to keep your band on ‘brand’, you need to change out your profile picture when you move on to a new project or album.
You may think that an image, whose ideal size is only 300 x 300 pixels, doesn’t matter for getting plays. You’d be wrong to think that. You can change out this image to look active after time away, bringing people back to your account who have been away. If it’s your first profile photo, make sure it’s professional enough to warrant attention.