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« 7 Music Marketing Truths ALL Musicians Should Know | Main | MusicThinkTank.com Weekly Recap: How To Make A Website Like Ed Sheeran, Case Study Part 1 »
Monday
Sep092013

Beginners Guide To Using Soundcloud

Before I start, let me say there are many alternatives to upload music throughout the internet, including ReverbnationYouTube and the old timer trying to be young again, MySpace.

Setting Up Guide:

Soundcloud is a free to use website for uploading audio - all you need to start is your email address or the usual Facebook/Google sign in information. I’ve noticed using a separate email is easier for bands and producers than your personal Facebook account, but if you are just using Soundcloud to listen to music and maybe upload some amatuer things for your friends, then Facebook or Google could be the way to go.

Artist Name/Username

I was going to say that’s pretty simple, but actually choosing a name for your music could be one of the most important decisions you make. That’s for another post, but don’t be generic…please. Also; don’t make your name something like “F00_Fighters”, nobody would ever search you by that.

URL

Choose something with your artist name in it, and something memorable. Not something like “www.soundcloud.com/awesome0dubstep2”. Either all one word such as “/davidsmithmusic” or “david-smith-music”

Location

Where you live. This will help both fans and fellow artists know where you are based. (yes…really).

Connected Accounts

I’d fully advise linking up a Facebook like page and a Twitter, (your own personal account if you wouldn’t tweet on the ‘artist’ one, don’t make one then leave it empty). A blog-like website would also go very well, for example Tumblr, Blogger or WordPress account. Having your own website is cool but there is no rush for that, utilize the free social networks for now… unless you have a huge fan-base already in which case i’m sure you’ve already got one, and shame on you for not joining Soundcloud until now!

Occupation

On Soundcloud you get the choice to be an ‘artist/producer/band’, ‘press/blogger’, ‘label/publisher’ etc. Be what you want to be (up to a maximum of 3).

Description

As you can see from the screenshot, you don’t get much room to write biography on your profile, so it’s best to keep it short and sweet and if people are intrigued, they’ll click the “read full profile” button. Short and sweet is key!

Profile Picture

Unanimous throughout the internet, from Facebook to Twitter, the box is around 200px by 200px so something that fits in there or can be scaled down to that will work very well!

Upgrades

At the beginning, I would suggest a free account, explore Soundcloud before you start paying for it, I’ll go into detail on the upgrade and pricing plans later.

With going “pro”, you get an option of a ‘spotlight’, this enables you to highlight certain songs (such as a released single) rather than a few demos you are putting up always at the top.

Further information on the pricing plans are here –http://help.soundcloud.com/customer/portal/articles/247820-what-s-the-difference-between-each-subscription-level-

So I hope you’ve got some music or something to upload, if not, making that would probably be the next step…

 

Mark Longhurst works in digital marketing, takes some photos and makes music. He also founded the music blog ::papercomets::

Twitter - https://twitter.com/MarkAudioWave

Pinterest - http://pinterest.com/markaudiowave

Reader Comments (6)

Soundcloud is a great platform for any beginner artist to use to get their music out there. It allows artists to create their own profiles and upload any music they want, with the option to download. Sometimes, there is a limit on how many times a song they post can be downloaded so it almost becomes a race to see who can download it first. As far as social media marketing goes, soundcloud is simply amazing because you can find songs posted directly from the artists themselves, instead of trying to search for bootlegged songs that have awful security recordings layered over them to prevent people from copying them and using them as their own.

September 9 | Unregistered CommenterMadison Zinsenheim

Great introduction Mark.

One thing that i've learned is that most people don't realize that you can add a "Buy" button to your SoundCloud tracks. I wrote the following tip for the Nimbit blog on how to do it, but the process is the same to link to any online store where you sell music.

How to Sell music on SoundCloud

September 9 | Unregistered CommenterCarl Jacobson

I completely agree Madison, giving your fans the easiest way to find & listen to your music is key.

Thanks Carl, that's a very good point and a really nice post.

September 10 | Registered CommenterMark Longhurst

Very nice primer, Mark.

It would be good (if you haven't done so already) to follow this up by looking into the way myriad "groups" that exist within the "SoundCloud Community".

It appears to me (not having spent ample time exploring said community) - that artists can garner a much larger share of "followers / fans" by utilising these groups in a clever fashion.

What do you think?

Best regards...

September 10 | Unregistered CommenterElliott Randall

Thank you Elliot, the promotion of your SoundCloud and music is something I'm definitely looking into! Groups are a underused and potentially undervalued area within the platform, but could be a really good place to build up a community of not just fans; but other musicians who you could work with and ask advice from.

If you have any other suggestions feel free to send them my way!

September 11 | Registered CommenterMark Longhurst

Good point on the connected accounts tumblr, facebook, twitter etc. The more the merrier. They are used in the soundcloud disco rank algorithm to place you in the search results and exposure pages. This along with using a soundcloud promotional automation tool (I use http://soundcloudmanager.com/, but you can use any really) has got me really well placed that I know get some serious organic traffic to my tracks and my music is really taking off!

February 15 | Unregistered CommenterDJ Wrecked Hordes

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