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Audience Optimization – 4 Ways to Increase Streaming Royalties

In the digital age, music streaming has become the dominant platform for music consumption, providing ample opportunities for artists, particularly independent or small-scale musicians, to reach a global audience. However, earning revenue from streaming platforms like Amazon Music can be challenging due to the sheer volume of content available.

How can you increase your chances of a payout? What tricks and tips might you engage to improve your revenue? This article explores strategies for small artists to maximize their music streaming revenue, ranging from songwriting to analytics.

Write Catchy Songs

One of the most effective ways to maximize streaming revenue is to create catchy songs that resonate with listeners. Crafting songs with memorable melodies, hooks, and lyrics can significantly increase the likelihood of capturing the attention of streaming audiences. Of course, writing catchy songs is a method by which musicians have been noticed across the age – songwriter Bacon James explains that a catchy, instrumental-led melody makes a song memorable, and if it is memorable, it is highly likely to gain repeat streams. With that in mind, you should focus on creating music that evokes emotions, tells compelling stories, and connects with the listener on a deeper level. Invest time in honing your songwriting skills, studying successful songs in your genre, and experimenting with different musical elements to find your unique sound.

Collaborate and Seek Feedback

Collaborating with other songwriters, producers, and musicians can offer fresh perspectives and expand your creative horizons. It allows you to tap into a broader range of ideas and influences, ultimately enhancing your digital reach. Back in the eighties, before streaming, Run DMC and Aerosmith did this to great effect with their collab Walk This Way, which enabled fans of each to experience another genre. In streaming, the collab between Lil Nas X and Billy Ray Cyrus on Old Town Road – Remix was a huge success. In the first six months, the shared listeners between the two artists increased by nearly 390,000%. Whilst you might not have access to such big stars, even linking up with other local artists could introduce you to a new fanbase you haven’t previously encountered.

Utilize Data and Analytics

One of the most important factors in improving your revenue is data. Make sure you leverage the data and analytics provided by streaming platforms to gain insights into your audience and their preferences. By analyzing metrics such as streams, listener demographics, and playlist placements to identify trends and patterns, you can guide your songwriting process by understanding what resonates with your audience. If you have an album of work with different genres and styles, it could guide you towards a certain style. For instance, the 2020 album Telling Truths, by British band Millie Manders and the Shutup, has a heavy metal-driven track called Bitter, with 76,000 listens, whilst the slightly less edgy Your Story has almost 170,000. That suggests their next album should be a little less metal-focused if it is to appeal to listeners, and it’s that sort of analysis that can help you too.

Engage with Your Audience

Build a strong connection with your audience through social media platforms and other digital channels. Engaging with your fans, responding to comments and messages, and keeping them updated on your latest releases and activities will all help streaming numbers. Social media is a huge driver in today’s market, and small bands can build a loyal following simply by engaging regularly.  Cultivating a loyal and engaged fan base can increase the chances of your songs being shared and streamed, leading to higher revenue potential. A classic example of this is The Weeknd, who built a following through YouTube and social media, engaging with listeners and releasing new music where it was accessible. As of July 2023, he has more listeners than any other artist on Spotify.

Article contributed by Romy Jane
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