Today we’re talking about how to build your promo list so you can maximize your radio, YouTube and Spotify support.
Every new release should start with a new marketing plan, which you’ll have to go through every time. From the cover photo to promotional assets, there are a bunch of steps to be done in every release, and sending your own promo blast is something I highly recommend you doing.
So, today I’ll show you how you can build your own list, so that even if you decide to go with an independent release, you’ll be able to snag some supports from major artists and channels. As proof that this is beneficial to you, the techniques I’ll show you today got me supports from Jason Ross, Dash Berlin, Kyau & Albert, Markus Schulz, Super8 & Tab, and many more.
Here is what we’re covering today:
- Email the Right People
- Finding Emails: The Easy Way
- Finding Emails: The Kind Way
- Finding Emails: The Stalker Method
- Finding Emails: Asking Your Friends or the Label
- Should I Care About Smaller Artists’ Podcasts?
- What Information Should You Get?
- Building a Relationship
- Sharing Your Promo List?
- Building a Spotify/YouTube Promo List
Email the Right People
I’m a believer that you should have your own promo list and you should send it out in every release, even for a label release in which the label supposedly is already sending this out. However, you should not email artists who are not likely to play your track due to different genres.
For example, you probably should not email Hernan Cattaneo mainstream EDM song because he has a 99.9999% chance of not playing it, so why even send it? Not only this, but he’ll possibly put your email on his spam inbox, which could harm you if you ever decide to switch genres. So, I would avoid this.
It’s important to do your research before sending out your emails and only sending them to people who have played tracks in your genre before. There will always be someone that unexpectedly could play your genre, but I’d wait until they play your genre first before you promo email them.
Finding Emails: The Easy Way
My method of finding artists who play tracks in my genre is by looking at playlists on 1001Tracklists. The following picture shows a list of people who have played Taylor Torrence remix of Steve Brian & Patrik Humann’s Jupiter Boulevard:
Let’s say you’re considering Karanda’s radio support, for example. If you search on Karanda’s page on Facebook, you’ll see their promo email over there:
Perfect. Email added to list. Since they have a clear email indicating their promo email, you can email it without asking permission to. However, if you see an email like email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org, it could be interesting to ask for their permission to send promos to that email so you don’t crowd their inbox.
Finding Emails: The Kind Way
Sometimes, emails are not easily visible to the public, and you may need to do some deep diving.
I’d start by asking the person since if they give it to you, it’s already an authorization for you to send the promo. They won’t be surprised to see your name there in their email inbox and it could work really well.
When writing this post, I messaged Maor Levi, a top Anjunabeats artist, and he answered right away (Out of respect, I’ll cover the email he provided me):
There you go! They are not necessarily unreachable and it’s always a possibility. If they don’t answer you, you can always try emailing their managers and asking for it, which has worked for me in the past as well, as you can see below:
In the case above, I emailed Tritonal’s manager asking for their promo email and I got it promptly.
This is another useful way of finding emails for your email list since you’re already asking for permission to send promos and, in case they answer it, you can send it as it’s expected by them.
Finding Emails: The Stalker Method
If neither of these worked, then you might need to activate your stalker abilities. Go to the website https://www.allmytweets.net/ and search for the artist you’re looking for. To illustrate, I will search for Sunny Lax’s email:
You’ll see a list of all Sunny’s previous tweets and you’ll be able to search for terms like “@sunnylax.com”, “promo@”, “demos@”, etc, with your browser’s search tool (Cmd / Ctrl + F in Chrome). Be creative and sky’s the limit here for what you can search. And, BAM!
You could also try this search with GOOGLE, although it’s proven to me to be harder than twitter.
I know for a fact that this is not Sunny’s email since his Facebook page shows something else, but that’s only to show you if nothing is available. Other than that, I’ve found MULTIPLE emails this way, so definitely something I do from time to time to find new emails.
Finding Emails: Asking Your Friends or the Label
As you can imagine, I have my own promo email list and I use it for all my releases. However, sometimes a friend of mine could have one email that I don’t. In this case, asking them if they have the email you’re looking for could go a long way.
Last example that happened to me, although I’ll hide the names, I got support from a big artist on one of my latest tracks and the label asked me for his email. I sent them the email, but also asked for the email of a bigger artists I’ve been looking for, which they gave it to me in exchange. The same as happened multiple times with some friends in the industry.
Don’t be afraid to ask. The worst you can get is a “I can’t share this with you”, so if you know your friend has an email you want, ask for it!
Should I Care About Smaller Artists’ Podcasts?
Yes, of course. No pre judgement here and just send it to everyone. The more, the better.
Today the small artist you’re sending a promo to may not be as big as David Guetta, but who knows where he/she’ll be in 2-3 years? In addition to that, you’ll be reaching another audience who may like your track and start following you directly. So, definitely email everyone!
What Information Should You Get?
Normally, I try to find 4 things from the artist.
- Real name
- Artist Name (Easy)
- Podcast name
From my experience with promo lists, with these four fields you’ll be able to manage any promo blast the right way. You can refer to artists with their real name instead of just emailing a bunch of people in the same email just saying “Hey, check this out”.
If you look below, this is how I email my contacts when I’m blasting a promo:
The more personal you can be in your email, the better. This way, not only will you start to develop a relationship, but the person will also start enjoying receiving your promos.
Building a Relationship
After emailing, some of these producers may support your track in their podcast, playlists or live set, and it’s nice to show that you care and appreciate what they have done to you.
For example, if Dash Berlin supported your track and he got the track through your link, send him a thank you email or hit them directly on Instagram with a direct message and/or post/stories feature afterwards, thanking for the support. This shows appreciation, and it’s something most producers would just forget to do it.
If you do this, your chances of being remembered are higher the next time you send something. By being remembered, your chances of being supported next time will increase since the artist starts to care not only for the track, but also for you.
You can read a bit more about networking effectively to build stronger relatioships with other artists in the music industry right here.
Sharing Your Promo List?
Well, this is a sensible topic. In my opinion, sharing an email or two, that’s no problem. The issue is sharing the entire thing.
While you may want to help someone who may ask you, for every person that starts emailing all those emails in the list shared, your chance of being noticed in that artist’s inbox will be smaller. Not that the artist will stop liking you, which could happen, but mainly because his inbox will be more crowded.
I’ve shared my list with a select few people in exchange for their promo list, but I can count on one hand the amount of people I did this with. However, I never shared my list publicly and I don’t think you should since that would be a disrespect to the artist.
Building a Spotify/YouTube Promo List
In addition to artist support, you should also care about getting support on Youtube and on Spotify as well.
Although this is a little trickier because most of the big playlists on Spotify are owned by Spotify themselves, there are a lot of smaller playlists that you can find a home for your track.
As expected, you’ll want to send your emails to playlists that are the biggest in the market and smaller playlists might not get as many plays as big playlist. However, a small playlist will probably do better than no playlist at all, so every playlist counts
When searching for playlists, this is what you can find after searching for “progressive” on Spotify:
Ok, but what if you don’t know what to look for and/or the channel/playlist has a totally different name, like Nik Cooper’s Youtube Channel? There are two methods that you can try when finding channels/playlists:
- Checking similar tracks and where are they being featured on:
- Select 10 tracks that you consider similar to yours;
- Search them all on Youtube and Spotify and check what playlists/channels come up;
- Go to the artist Spotify page and check the playlists he’s featured on.
- Going inside playlists after doing a search and checking if your song is a great match based on the songs that are already there.
If you’ve found the right match, then you’ll have to do the following:
- For YouTube, go to their about page and you’ll find their email/submission address
- For Spotify, you’ll need to dig a bit deeper to understand who’s the owner, but you can always find them on facebook.
Now it’s your turn
There you have it! These are my methods to finding promo emails, and I rely on all three heavily!
Now, I’d like to hear from you:
Which of these methods do you see yourself applying first?
Did this post give you a path to building your promo list?
Let me know in the comments below!