Just the other day, I hit 400,000 plays on Soundcloud. After announcing it on Facebook and Twitter, I’ve had several people ask me, “how did you do it?”, or, “I’d love to hear how you work Soundcloud!”. Rather than replying with a lengthy status update on Facebook that wouldn’t transfer to Twitter, I thought I’d write a short blog response to these questions.
The short answer is, there is no short answer. There is no magic formula. There is no trick, no method, and no gaming the site.
My success on Soundcloud echoes the same story of many other people that have had success in many different areas. Primarily, that I was ready when the opportunity came, or when the lucky break hit – however you want to look at it. This is the most important thing I can convey to those people that asked how I did it, and it doesn’t just work for Soundcloud – it works for everything.
In my case, I had a few lucky breaks with the right people hearing and sharing my music. This lead to Soundcloud featuring me as their ‘Soundclouder of the Day’, as well as featuring me regularly on their classical genre page. I have been heavily involved and invested in Soudcloud, and I try to release a steady stream of content in an attempt to keep the page updated and fresh.
I don’t limit the page to my compositions, although that’s the bulk of it. I include samples of everything I do that’s in the audio format – from my own works, to my performances of others works, to episodes of my podcasts. In addition, I make a real effort every week to listen to music of composers I know, AND to discover new composers that I don’t. I regularly share their music to my 430,000 followers. This gives exposure to those composers/performers, and makes my page a go-to spot for discovering the latest and greatest contemporary art music. This is called community, and it is VITALLY important to success as an artist.
Bottom line is, if the content wasn’t there, or my page was left fallow and neglected, those breaks would have passed me right by, and I never would have even known they came along.
So, keep your content coming, and your sites updated and engaged! You never know when your break will come along, and if you’re not ready for it, you never will!