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How to get on Spotify Playlists | The 3 Step Plan to Get Your Music Heard | iSpyTunes

Updated: Nov 3, 2022


how to get on spotify playlists: the 3 step plan

Are you looking how to get your music on Spotify playlists that have plenty of followers? With our proven three step plan, we can confidently show you the blueprint of how to get your songs heard by the masses via a powerful Spotify Playlisting strategy.


If you are serious about wanting to get on Spotify playlists then stick around, because by the end of this post, you'll be ready to take your music career to the next level!


The Basics: A Quick Background

The hierarchy of playlists looks something like this...

Spotify playlist hierarchy

It is the easiest to get on a user generated playlist, yet the hardest to get onto an official Spotify playlist. It is nearly impossible to immediately get placed onto a massive editorial playlist without industry connections or a label pulling the strings.


Because of this, we need to go step by step to reach the top of the playlisting mountain. Let's start at the beginning, with user generated playlists.


Step 1: How to Get on Spotify User Generated Playlists

User Generated playlists on Spotify are awesome. They can be created by anybody with a Spotify account, free or paid, and be made available for everyone to listen to.


Unlike Apple Music, on Spotify is easy to find plenty of playlists for almost any genre, mood, or activity.


Whether you're looking for some feel-good music to help you relax, or some high-energy tunes to get you pumped up for a workout, there's a playlist for that.


And if you can't find exactly what you're looking for, you can always create your own playlists as well! To learn more about how to grow your own Spotify playlist, click here.


So when trying to get your song on playlists with engagement and a following, it makes sense to build relationships with curators that have a playlist your song would fit in naturally.


a. Finding ideal Spotify Playlists for your song

You can perform a simple search with keywords related to your song. For example, lets say that you make hyperpop music. A simple search for the keyword hyperpop, and then clicking the term "playlists", will allow you to see some of the top performing playlists related to the term.

user generated spotify playlists

Ignoring the playlists created by Spotify, you can now go through each of the public playlists to find contact information in the description (usually an Instagram or e-mail).


Or, as a different example, lets say you make downbeat, lo-fi music. You could experiment with different terms commonly associated with the genre such as "slow sad songs" or "rainy day sleeping music". Try to think outside the box to cover all bases.


b. Quality-Checking each Playlist

This step is arguably the most vital step, and musicians fail to do this too often when reaching out to independently curated playlists.


There are thousands of fraudulent playlists on Spotify that utilize robots (aka bots) to artificially inflate their playlist. We don't want to be associated with these.


If a new artist successfully lands playlist placement for his song, but that playlist is actually botted, Spotify's algorithm is far less likely to run with the track. (We'll touch more on this is step two.)


Therefore, you need to make sure the first playlists your songs get placed in have a steady stream of new followers and rank for certain keywords. That's why we suggest you use artist.tools.


Artist.tools is arguably one of the most powerful tools for independent musicians, as it allows you to view stats on a playlist, see a quality score ranking, and immediately know if a playlist is legit and real, or fraudulent and a scam.

how to avoid botted spotify playlists

They also allow you to easily see contact details for different playlists and reach out with the click of a button. You can copy and paste the link of any playlist into their platform and learn all the important details in an instant. We would highly recommend artist.tools to save time, money, and ultimately avoid hurting yourself as an artist long-term on the platform. (Oh, and you can also do part A and C of this step easier with their platform :)


With our link you can use their awesome platform for 10% off. Still not sure? Learn more about their platform here.


c. Reaching Out to Spotify Playlist Curators

Ok! Now that you have found playlists that your new music would fit well on, that you are sure have a real following and organic growth, it's time to reach out.


Every curator is different. Some accept submissions for free. (Like us! To submit your music to our playlists, click here!)


Some are much harder to convince to accept songs, so don't spam them or beg for placement. Just be polite and move on, there are more fish in the sea.


If a curator is hesitant, you can always let them know a little bit about your song and message behind the track. Or, try to provide additional value to potential playlist contacts to make them more likely to approve the playlist consideration.


Once you find playlists willing to place your track, be sure to support that playlist on your social media accounts. You want to try and befriend multiple curators, that way the process is easier and quicker in the future.


Ideally, landing on between 5-10 playlists that are made by Spotify users will greatly boost your chances of the next phase of the process, landing on algorithmic playlists.


Summary/Quick Review of Step 1


Step 2: How to Get on Spotify Algorithmic Playlists

Now it gets more challenging. An algorithmically-generated playlist is a playlist created by a computer program, rather than by a human, according to a set of predetermined rules.

Algorithmic Playlists Stats of Music on Spotify for Artists Account

These type of Spotify Playlists use machine learning to add music based on the listening habits of individual users. The algorithms analyze a user's musical taste and create a playlist of similar songs. The goal of Spotify is to create a playlist that the user will enjoy and want to listen to again.


There are several different types of Spotify Algorithmic Playlists, including Discover Weekly, Release Radar, and Daily Mix.


Discover Weekly is a playlist of new and old songs that are similar to the songs you already like.

Release Radar is a playlist of new releases from artists you already follow.

Daily Mix is a playlist of songs that you've listened to a lot recently, as well as new songs that are similar to those you've been playing.


These playlists are an easy way for Spotify users to discover new music that they'll love, and an easy way for you to get your music heard by an optimal group of listeners, as determined by AI. However, there is no guaranteed way to get your song placed on algorithmic playlists.


How does Spotify's algorithm work?

Spotify's algorithm is a mysterious beast, and the company has been notoriously tight-lipped about how it works. However, there are a few factors that we know affect the algorithm, and which Spotify has publicly acknowledged.

  • First, the algorithm takes into account the music a user has listened to in the past, and uses that data to make recommendations for new music.

  • Second, it looks at the music saved in a user's library, as well as various personalized playlists that have been created.

  • Finally, it looks at the listening habits of other users who have similar taste to you.

By taking all of these factors into account, the Spotify algorithm is able to give a user tailored recommendations that are designed to keep you listening.


How to Increase your chances of Algorithmic Playlist Consideration

While the specifics of the algorithm are a closely guarded secret, there are some general guidelines that artists can follow to increase their chances of being included in Algorithmic Spotify playlists.


Here are the five keys we suggest independent musicians focus on:


1. Produce high-quality music that meets Spotify's audio requirements.

First and foremost, it's important to have high-quality recordings of your songs. With so many options to choose from, Spotify users are notoriously picky when it comes to sound quality, so anything less than perfection is likely to be passed over.


2. Make sure your artist profile is complete and up-to-date

Easily manage your Spotify presence with Spotify for Artists. Importantly, Spotify for Artists allows you to control what appears on your profile, ensuring that your most recent release is always front and center. Best of all, it's completely free to use. So what are you waiting for? Claim your profile today. To learn even more about the Spotify For Artists platform click here.


3. Placements in User Generated Playlists

As discussed thoroughly in step one, a song in the right listener playlists can have a snowball effect on streams and saves. A high rate of engagement in the right kind of curated Spotify playlists will tell the Spotify algorithm to push the track to even more users in algorithmic Spotify playlists.


4. Pre-saves & high first week stats

If you use the music distributor Distrokid, which we do recommend, you can set up pre-save links which will have the song automatically saved when release. This can lead to strong first week stats for your new release, which encourages Spotify to push to others in the specific algorithmic playlist Discover Weekly.


5. Utilize various Marketing Strategies

We know that a high save rate and a plethora of repeat listeners will greatly increase your song's chance of success. Therefore, any users that come to the platform to hear specifically your song are more likely to listen to the whole track, save to their own playlist or library, and listen to repeatedly.


So, promote your music elsewhere. Having your song featured on blogs and websites will help people come to the platform with the goal of hearing your track. Spotify crawlers may notice that about your music and give it a boost. Experiment with social media marketing and different forms of music marketing. Often, these efforts can get your song "over the hump", and get your music playlisted.


To learn more about various music marketing tactics, click here.

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There are other rumored factors, such as using keywords in your song titles makes it easier for Spotify's algorithms to find your music. Ultimately, it is impossible to know exactly how playlist consideration works in each scenario.


If you feel one of the five mentioned factors you can improve upon, focus on that. Ideally, if your song meets the criteria of the above listed elements, then you should begin to earn plays from Radio, Discover weekly, Release Radar, and more.


Notably, be patient! It can often takes months or even years for a song to catch on and start appearing on algorithmic playlists. But worry about the thing you can control, and if you keep at it, eventually you'll see those sweet, sweet Spotify plays rolling in.


Summary/Quick Review of Step 2


Step 3: How to Get on Spotify Editorial Playlists

If you've followed the steps so far, your Spotify artist profile is beginning to look complete and the social proof of streaming results are on display.


A Spotify Editorial Playlist is without a doubt the hardest feat to achieve. Plenty of artists we have worked with have been in the music industry for nearly a decade, and have yet to reach this goal. This takes both time and luck, but there are multiple ways to improve your chances, and get those BIG BOY streaming numbers. Here are the three strategies we would recommend.

A few example editorial official playlists

1. Pitch a song in Spotify for Artists

When you pitch a song through Spotify for Artists, this is your main chance to get direct information in from of Spotify's editorial team. Editorial playlist placement is notoriously difficult, but even if your song is not placed in any editorial playlists, this ensures that all of your Spotify followers receive your song in their Release Radar playlist. Furthermore, if the song performs well initially, it can appear in the Release Radar playlist of users who do not even follow your artist page.


Pitching a song has to be done at least 7 days before its release date, so be sure to schedule your song to go live multiple weeks ahead, to allow ample time for Spotify and other streaming services to receive the track.


2. Create Music for an Editorial Playlist

One smart strategy is to create music that is tailored for a specific playlist. Spotify's editorial team is always on the lookout for new tracks that fit the vibe of their playlists. If you can demonstrate that your music is a good fit, you'll be much more likely to earn placement. Plus, tailoring your music to a specific playlist can help you to connect with listeners who are already interested in the kind of music that you make.


This could mean creating an acoustic version of an upbeat pop song, or adding a remix to an EDM track. By tailoring your music to the specific needs of a Spotify editorial playlist, you can increase your chances of getting placement and reaching a whole new audience. And that's definitely worth the extra effort.


3. Keep Working on Your Craft

Making music is a lot like playing the lottery. You might get lucky and have a song blow up overnight without any promotion, but for most people, it takes a lot of hard work to get noticed.


The music industry is crowded, and there are no guarantees when it comes to success. However, that doesn't mean you should give up if your songs don't land on Spotify's editorial playlists. If you're passionate about making music, keep working at it and don't let setbacks get you down.


Eventually, your hard work will pay off and you'll reap the rewards. Who knows, maybe one of your songs will end up on Today's Top Hits one day after all. Stranger things have happened.


Summary/Quick Review of Step 3

FAQ:


Can artists see playlists on Spotify?

With a Spotify for Artists account, you can see which of your own tracks has landed into various user-generated, algorithmic, or editorial Spotify playlists. Furthermore, you can see data on your listeners, and use this information to better prepare your future releases.


How often do you get your music accepted by user generated playlists?

As a rule of thumb, a good rate for acceptance from Spotify playlist curators is around 10%-20%. Popular playlists can be more difficult than smaller playlists, but a good song could always work it wonders.


How do I send new releases to the Spotify Editorial team?

On Spotify for Artists, click on the "music" tab at the top of the screen. Then, click on the "upcoming" tab. Here, you can see your songs that are set to come out in the near future, that have been received from your music distributor. Now, just click "pitch a song" to get started. Be sure to follow our mentioned tips when pitching a song to increase it's likelihood of landing in various Spotify playlists.

Spotify For Artists Dashboard Upcoming Releases

Final Thoughts

Hopefully you were able to learn something new about how to get on Spotify playlists with our detailed three step guide.


If you have any questions, be sure to leave them down below in the comments below. Or, if you have any experiences and lessons learned with Spotify playlist promotion, feel free to share as well.


Lastly, Subscribe to our blog for more extremely valuable content for independent musicians, all completely free!

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