There’s a public process for suggesting unreleased songs to Spotify for a playlist.
Getting your song into a Spotify playlist can be a major win for introducing your music to new fans. Fortunately for artists, the process is now a bit easier than before. You no longer have to hunt around for hidden web forms, find direct email contacts, or consult the ancient runestones to submit an upcoming release to Spotify’s in-house editorial team for playlist consideration.
Spotify announced a far more formalized and transparent process for playlist submissions — and it’s something you can do directly through your Spotify for Artists account, as long as your song has already been delivered to Spotify and scheduled for release.
Some important information before we begin:
- If you’re reading this in anticipation of a new release, be sure to schedule time for your pitch in your music release plan.
- In order to claim your Spotify for Artists account, you must have music on Spotify already. That means you can’t use this direct submission process for your first release.
- Your unreleased track must’ve already been delivered to Spotify in order to submit the song to Spotify’s team, and you must complete the playlist submission process AT LEAST seven days ahead of your release date.
The 8 most important things to know about submitting a song to Spotify’s editorial team:
- You still need distribution; this is not a process for delivering music to Spotify directly, only for drawing Spotify’s attention to a track that has already been delivered to their ecosystem. So distribute your music to Spotify.
- You can only submit one unreleased song at a time for playlist consideration; once the song drops, you can then submit another unreleased track to their team.
- Submitting an unreleased song for consideration also guarantees that your followers on Spotify will have the track added to their customized Release Radar playlists on Friday, assuming they have not already listened to the song earlier in the week.
- Spotify wants DATA to help them match the best songs to the right playlists. They say: It’s important to give us as much information about the track as possible — genre, mood, and other data points all help us make decisions about where it may fit. You can note the instruments on it, whether it’s a cover, and the cultures you or the song belong to. The data you share will be complemented by what we already know about you — what else your fans listen to, what other playlists you’ve appeared on, etc.
- You can only submit music on DESKTOP; the submission process will not work in the mobile version of Spotify for Artists.
- You’ve gotta submit at LEAST seven days in advance of the song’s release; but the more lead-time you give Spotify, the better. It can also take them an additional day or two on the front end to process the music once CD Baby delivers it to them. Plan ahead!
- It is not possible to submit music that has already been released.
- This process is FREE, and there is no mechanism by which to pay in order to increase your chances of placement.
How to submit a song for Spotify playlist consideration
- If you already have a Spotify for Artists account, you may receive an email like this once your unreleased music is eligible for submission. The subject line will be: “Your music is scheduled for release.”
- Log into Spotify for Artists on desktop.
- Make sure your avatar, bio, and pics are up-to-date. Spotify may use this stuff when they share your music.
- Click “Music” in the top nav.
- Click “Upcoming.”
- Choose a song from the list and click “Pitch a Song.”
- Fill out as much info about the song as possible. The more info, the better chance it has! Be sure to select your genres and culture, moods, styles, language, region, and instrumentation…
- And lastly, make a short pitch (a few sentences). Try to describe what’s interesting about the music, any important featured artists, or even details about your music marketing plan. Spotify wants to see that you’re working for the track’s success as well.
Pretty simple. If your song gets placed in a playlist, Spotify will send you an email notification. Plus, it’s good to get in the habit of checking the Playlists tab in your Spotify for Artists account on the regular anyway.
Can I get on Spotify playlists without submitting directly?
You sure can! While you can’t get on official editorial playlists without directly pitching, independently curated playlists are also important to building your resumé. Here are some ways to do that:
- Become a verified artist on Spotify
- Build some of these kinds of Spotify playlists on your own and make sure they’ll show up in a search
- Get your music onto some of these playlists by collaborating with friends, fellow artists, and your own fans. Pitching to independently curated playlists is a major avenue for building algorithmic energy for your song, which is what other playlists depend on.
- Check out part one of our DIY Musician Podcast about playlist placement and pitching
- Explore third party pitching services like SubmitHub, PlaylistPush, and others. We discuss the benefits and drawbacks of those in the second episode of the Spotify playlist podcast.
- Or, try some of these other tips for pitching your playlist independently.
Lastly, much of this might seem daunting for a new indie musician, but it can absolutely be done! Folk-pop artist Braden Lam released a single, an album, and got on an official Spotify playlist all in one summer. Read his guest blog post to find out all the steps he took to achieve Spotify success.
And be sure to share your tips too! If you’ve done something unique to get attention for your music on Spotify, we’d love to hear about in the comments.