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How to Use Spotify as an Independent Artist

February 6, 2015 by Sarah Hamilton
Article Series: The Digital World with Ditto Music
Filed Under: Artist Content

Navigating the digital space - from distribution, to release campaigns, to online marketing. How to get featured on iTunes, into the charts, an explanation of royalties and revenue. Anything digital we've got you covered.


 So, you’ve probably read a bunch of articles that show small returns for artists having their music on Spotify. You’ve seen that Taylor Swift made the decision to remove her releases and the International Brouhaha that followed. However, did you know that most of the people who use streaming services like Spotify and Pandora actually purchase more music than any other demographic?

 This study explains in further detail. Yes it was conducted by Pandora, but it still provides food for thought in terms of who is using streaming services – often it’s music fans, people who listen to music all day, people who go to shows, new fans.


Although you should have the choice as an artist as to where you put your music, if you choose to get it onto platforms like Spotify and Pandora, you should know how best to use them.

We have decided to give you some tips on using Spotify as an artist – any tricks, tips, things we have seen work well, so you can get people all over the world listening to your tunes.

1. Setup an artist profile correctly.

If you want fans to follow your band on Spotify, you need to properly setup your artist profile. You can add images, and it will be linked to your biography as well, so make sure you have a biography on All Music (http://www.allmusic.com/).

Spotify will then verify your artist profile.

2. Start creating playlists.

By doing this you are showing your fans what you listen to, what you align with, and you can get added to other playlists in return. This is a really valuable tool for promotion and can help launch your music into new places and territories around the world.

 3. Share your Spotify activity on Social Media, and link to merchandise and gigs.

Did you know that you can sell merchandise and gig tickets via Spotify now? If you have a songkick account, this will automatically integrate with Spotify, so if a fan of yours looks at your artist profile, they will automatically see any gigs that you’re playing close to them, and can purchase tickets. Pretty crazy right?

Songkick: www.songkick.com/

The same goes for merchandise.  Just setup a BandPage account and this integration happens automatically as well.

Bandpage: https://www.bandpage.com/

When it comes to creating playlists and your activity on Spotify, feel free to share it with your fans on Facebook, Twitter – to show others that you’re active on the platform. If they’re interested in your music, it’s probably a given that they’re also interested in your musical influences and would be keen to see what you listen to and what inspires you.

 4. Review your activity via your digital aggregator and learn about who loves your music.

One of the best things about digital distribution, is that artists now have access to who their fans are. Check your Spotify streams and see where people are listening to your music. Did you suddenly have a few thousand plays in Iceland? Why did that happen? Should you then try and market your music in Iceland, or connect with a few Icelandic bands who might be interested in a collaboration?

Utilise this information to help with your musical plans.

 5. Embrace Spotify as a consumer.

Use Spotify and see how it works. If artists have their music on Spotify, then they want it to be played and heard.

Figure out the ins and outs, listen to other playlists, get inspired and get involved.

If you want to – it’s your choice.

The views expressed in this article are the views of the author and not necessarily the views of Melting Pot.

Author Details

Sarah Hamilton

Sarah is Ditto Music's Client Manager for Australia. Ditto are a digital music and music video aggregator with offices in Melbourne, London, Liverpool and Nashville. With over 60 000 bands signed to us worldwide, Ditto assists with distribution to stores such as iTunes, Spotify and many more, marketing, promotion, chart registration, Vevo channel creation and other services that allow independent artists to make the most out of their careers while still remaining independent and in control.

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