This blog article is also published on Dotted Music. Musicians submit music to radio on a daily basis. Many of these music submissions to radio go ignored. Here’s how to submit music to radio that really works.
Secrets To Music Submissions To Radio Stations
Getting radio airplay isn’t a dice roll and it’s not a matter of doing multi-million dollar promotion campaigns. Especially not in public or indie radio (where your attention should be if you’re a DIY artist).
The science to getting radio airplay has more to do with only a few specific things, AND they must be made a high priority. Relationship building (i.e. Growth Farming) and communication is top of that list.
Each radio station decision-maker (station manager, program director, program host, etc) has their own individual perspectives and motives.
These preferences determine what they play and what they don’t. They also determine how often some songs get rotation versus others. However, how radio stations decide which songs get played actually has to do with a few factors that you might not realize.
Station managers with commercial radio will give a few spins here and there to “unknown” or DIY musicians if it fits with the format and if they earn the respect of either the DJ or the station management.
Once songs begin to chart more (meaning that the music ranking organizations like Billboard and CMJ are recording more plays nationwide) those songs will get more rotation.
Much of this is based on requests and promotion dollars from the labels.
As a DIY artist, your plan is to get your music on stations who are be looking to add indie and unsigned artists to their station playlists.
These are the radio stations and managers who you should be trying to figure out how to gain the interest of. Indie radio is your ticket here. What does that look like?
What determines an indie radio station playlist and spin count
There are essentially three factors that determine whether a radio station manager or music director will add a new song to their rotation. See if your music fits into these factors to be Radio Ready with this free ebook.
The songs that get airplay first off have to meet these three qualification. Sound quality and production value are paramount.
Most professional radio outlets qualify potential music submissions on the quality of the recording first. It’s instinctive, we aren’t going to play a poorly mixed song.
Great songwriting involves lyricism as well as composition and arrangement. Some great songs have very clever, witty, or thought-provoking lyrics. Yet others simply have a good arrangement with a nice melody but nothing very complicated about how it is written.
The last qualification plays the largest role in not only whether as song will get added to the rotation of a radio station but also how often it will be played.
Simply put, if a radio station manager, music director, or approved station personality likes a song, it will probably get some radio airplay. If that song also catches on with other station staff and especially with listeners, that song is going to get a lot more spins.
Radio station managers are people too. We like what we play. We have a personal interest in the content that we put on our platforms. It’s just simple human nature.
To be in this industry an din this creative space, you have to be a fan. Radio station managers are fans of music too, and often we’re fans of artists who not only make music that we enjoy but also who have engaged with us in some manner.
Next Steps To Get Music Submissions Accepted On Radio
How someone feels about you as a musician can play almost a bigger role than whether they only like your music. When you try to just separate yourself out and away from your art you limit the reach and connection-building power you have.
Instead, focus your energies on building connections and communities with the radio stations that you want airplay on. It’s not a matter of getting your music out to every single station in existence, or even every station that plays music in the same genre as you.
All of these strategies, tactics and tools are available for you right now in the Courses section.
Learn The Proven Process To Getting Radio Airplay
Many musicians don’t think about the pieces that need to be in place before starting this process.
Learn how to put all of these insights into work with a personal approach to your music marketing with a free 15 minute Strategy Session here.