By Ariel Hyatt and the team at Cyber PR
The Musician’s Guide to Marketing Platforms
In case you have not heard your DSP (Digital Service Provider) or streaming strategy is crucial to your success as an artist. You and you alone are responsible for driving likes and streams to Spotify. You also need to drive likes and subscribers and get people enticed enough to get on your mailing list. Luckily, marketing platforms are here to save the day!
This whole new breed of marketing tools are crucial to understand if you want to stay on top of your marketing game. They are called simply marketing platforms. These are extremely powerful tools that will help you to get your fans to take powerful actions that will pay off forever like saving your profile/track on Spotify,subscribing to your YouTube channel before watching a video or liking your Facebook Page as they visit.
In a saturated, crowded space (approx. 20,000 new tracks are added to Spotify each day according to DMR) where you are expected to attract fans and spin your own marketing magic, these platforms are vital. This post will cover Feature.fm, Toneden and Show.co. They are slightly different but they do basically the same things. We use all of them here and they are deeply incorporated in our Total Tuneups.
is a fan engagement platform and it features Action Pages to help build your audience – Click Here to create one. From The Site: Action Pages are highly engaging pages that reward fans for taking the actions you want in the platforms you want and provide you with deep insight into your audience.
Toneden is a fan engagement platform much like Feature.fm. You can use this platform to facilitate social media follows/likes and/or email addresses for free downloads. Learn more about the platform here. You can also optimize Facebook ads via Toneden, and customize those ads more than you can under the Facebook Ads Manager.
Show.co is a fan engagement platform much like Toneden and Feature.fm. This platform is owned by CD Baby and is integrated so you can use it as well (we can discuss which pieces to pick and choose on coaching calls. The CD Baby Blog has a great article on the best ways to utilize it for marketing campaigns.
What is Feature.fm?
This is a suite of powerful artist marketing tools that includes a Song promotion network that places your songs on streaming radio stations to targeted audiences. This is not a free service but can be a great way for artists to gain exposure where fans listen.
We love their Action Pages and suggest them because they provide an effective way to “shock” the algorithm at Spotify which can help you get picked up by playlists organically.
You can use this tool to run a pre-save (before release) or a save campaign (for tracks that are already posted on Spotify)
These campaigns differ in that the artist is able to choose where and how their music is featured or streamed.
After choosing the campaign, the next steps involve choosing the target audience. This feature allows you to select all types of demographics and genres based on the audience you are looking for.
Here are some of Feature FM’s other features:
Every artist has an analytic dashboard, which shows all engagements and interactions of their music.
Engagements include favorites, shares, follows, and Soundcloud clicks
Viewed Impressions are when the music is put on a website and it is viewed by the user
Feature.fm’s self-serve ad platform allows you to advertise your music to your target audience through unique channels only offered by Feature.fm like sponsored songs in streaming services and on music websites in addition to channels like audio ads, display, and an AI Powered Social Ads.
All of Feature.fm’s products provide real-time, advanced analytics and can send remarketing data to your various ad and social accounts.
Pre-Save Spotify Campaigns
Feature.FM is useful for Spotify pre-save campaigns: Artists receive email addresses, profiles, locations, and the number of followers for everyone who pre-saves their music.
Feature.fm Pre-save allows fans to Pre-save your music on Spotify, Deezer, and pre-order from other stores.
All artists of any size can create unlimited Pre-Saves with Feature.fm for free
They’ll automatically add your music to fan libraries the second it’s released.
You get detailed insight into who pre-saves your music.
How Does a Pre-Save or Save Spotify Campaign Work?
Pre-save or save Spotify campaigns are strategies used by artists and record labels to notify fans of an artist’s new music as it is released on Spotify. At first, you might think “pre-save” is something that Spotify is directly offering. This is not an official Spotify feature – It’s a creative use of Spotify’s algorithm by record labels and digital marketers. Here’s how to do it:
Before releasing new music, direct your fans to a special link and ask them to hit the Follow button on your Spotify artist profile.
When your new music becomes available, Spotify will automatically put the new release into “Your Library”.
Options for creating these campaigns rage from a manual call to action to a sophisticated campaign on a website.
Pre-save Spotify campaigns work best when implemented many weeks before a new release.
The term “pre-save” on Spotify started being used late last year. The feature that serves users new music from artists a user follows was there long before “pre-save”. Spotify drew attention to this with the rollout of their Release Radar playlist across all user accounts. Release Radar is an algorithm generated playlist. Every user on Spotify has their own unique Release Radar, Discover Weekly, and Your Daily Mix playlists. Based on what users listen to, save, add, share, or follow, Spotify automatically delivers these automated playlists.
How Much Does Feature.fm Charge?
Feature FM Allows you to design your own budget and allows you to see what that budget will get you:
First, choose a max budget for the campaign and if you’d like to set a daily limit or start and end dates on your campaign budget. For a Deezer streaming campaign, you only pay for each stream if the song is listened to for least 30 seconds. For a music website campaign, you pay $1 to $2 for every 1000 impressions. Payments are made weekly.
What is Show.co?
Show.co is a marketing platform for musicians that allows you to make links to promote your music by sending your audience to directly interact with your socials. You have the option of selecting from 4 different types of campaigns including:
YouTube and or Sound Cloud campaign to increase streams on a specific song or video and can “gate” the video requesting that fans subscribe to your channel before they get to view it (this is a great way to up your subscriber #s)
‘Email for Download’ campaign which directs people to join your mailing list, in order to gain access to a free download.
‘Social Unlock’ campaign The social unlock option prompts your audience to follow you on either Twitter, SoundCloud, Spotify, or subscribe to YouTube as well as join your mailing list, once this is done you can then redirect them to a URL of your choice to the exclusive content!
Once you’ve signed up simply click ‘New Campaign’ on the top right-hand side of the screen. You will then select the campaign you wish to run and just fill out the information as prompted.
How Music Does Show.co Charge?
They have different levels from free (limited) to platinum – $99 per month.
What is ToneDen?
ToneDen is also known for their “social unlock” feature, which has become very popular with social media marketing because it prompts a call-to-action to fans that is mutually beneficial to both the musician and the fan. The fan received generally a free download and in return the musician collects their contact data which can be used for marketing analytics to better advertise in the future. According to their website, ToneDen is social marketing platform that allows creators to increase their reach through creating multipurpose marketing campaigns that collect fan data to refine their target audience. Their sleek interface is easy-to-use and simplifies the social marketing process for independent musicians.
Playbooks allow musicians to create a social marketing campaign with multiple components in one space and streamline the process. ToneDen has created a collection of templates with specific campaign objectives you can choose from that will help promote your music on Spotify as well as promote your next gig or event on Facebook and Eventbrite.
Their ‘Audience AI’ helps you easily design ads to be seen on Facebook and Instagram feeds as well as Instagram stories. . To access this feature you have to sign up for a subscription, which starts at $50/month.
*Note* You can, and should, access this service through Facebook directly with their Ad Manager. This also comes without the additional charge of a subscription fee.
ToneDen gives you the ability to reach out to your Facebook followers directly to promote your upcoming releases and shows! With the help of their template designer, you can craft a personalized message to send out to all of your fans that will entice them to interact and check your latest release or even buy a ticket to your next show.
Once all this is done you Tone Den gives you access to analytics detailing who, not only opened the message but also who interacted with the information you sent.
FanLinks are a smart linking tool that lists all of your links to where your music can be found and displays it on a custom-designed landing page. This is meant to make promoting your music even easier because the FanLink can be attached to an email, social media, or anywhere on the Internet. You can then use ToneDen’s analytic tools to track where and when your fans are clicking. FanLinks can also be used to track which platforms are more effective based on clicks and traffic.
Lasso is a tool that creates small pop-up widgets for your website with the purpose of incentivizing social engagement and collecting contact data through offering something in return, such as a free download or a coupon to use on your merch. You can customize the message on the pop-up to be more authentic and genuine with your fans so they feel more compelled to click on it. It’s easy to integrate with platforms like WordPress, Squarespace, and Shopify so you can create widgets to collect emails, run a contest/giveaway, or a social unlock that require fans to follow you on your socials to get something for free in return.
How Much Does ToneDen.co Charge?
ToneDen subscription options vary depending on how much you’re looking to spend on Facebook and Instagram advertising. Their free option doesn’t offer nearly as much as the paid versions, in that you only get access to the social unlock, contests, and FanLink campaigns. If you want to use the automated Facebook and Instagram Ad campaign feature, the Basic option starts at $50/mo with a $100 ad budget per month. The costs for the ads are not included in the subscription price so remember to factor that into your marketing budget. ToneDen recommends their Pro option because you have a larger budget for advertising without increasing your monthly fee for their subscription.