If you have a band that is regularly releasing music, the discussion of which streaming platforms are the best to target has probably come up in conversation with your bandmates. The answer, really, is all of them. The more streaming platforms your music video can be viewed on, the higher range of fans you’ll be able to reach, and the more promotion you’ll be able to perform across platforms. This also allows for easy Linktrees where fans can access your content directly from your public social media profiles.
However, none of this is possible to any degree of monetization without music video distributors. Music video distributors publish music videos to streaming marketplaces that individuals can’t access without a distribution service. Of course, some platforms allow for manual uploading and personal accounts. But some exclusive marketplaces are only accessible through the use of a music video distributor. To give some context for each of these platforms, we’ve created a list of the major contenders to help outline why each one has its own unique benefits.
After many years of gaining popularity, YouTube is still one of the more popular destinations for users to stream both music and music videos. YouTube remains popular because, for many users, it’s still free to use with advertisements. This makes for a convenient way to put on a playlist at work if one doesn’t have access to a streaming account on another service. It’s also easy to access official and high-quality music videos from our favorite artists. With a worldwide audience built in, it’s a no-brainer to have your music videos on YouTube. Using a music video distributor saves time during the upload process and gives access to a verified artist account.
Vevo is similar to YouTube but with more privacy control and higher quality streams. Additionally, having a video distributor lets you upload your video once to the distributor, who then publishes it on major streaming platforms. You’ll get a verified account just like with YouTube, and your videos will be viewable in higher-quality streaming settings. It should also be noted that YouTube is for all kinds of video content, while Vevo is exclusively for music videos. A verified account on Vevo can be a great plus for your band or artist’s online presence.
In recent years, music streaming services have sought to create a central place to view music videos on their apps. Apple Music was among the first to start this process, and many have followed in recent years. This is the first example of a streaming marketplace that individual artists can’t access without using music video distributors. Streaming marketplaces require distributors to submit music to their stores. So, if you want your music video to land on Apple Music, then you’ll definitely need to use a video distributor.
In a similar fashion to Apple Music, Tidal requires the use of a distributor to get videos onto their marketplace. For those who haven’t heard of it, Tidal is a streaming platform heralded as offering lossless audio before Apple Music, and Spotify followed suit. It also offers a higher payout per stream than other platforms and is a little bit more expensive for its lossless audio subscription. Importantly, Tidal and Apple both have their own designated pages for music videos and run special promotional campaigns for videos. This is unique from YouTube and something that bands and artists should aim for as they promote their new music.
Last on our list is Spotify. Spotify is a household name at this point and the primary place where most consumers listen to music in their daily routines. Spotify has by far the most reliable app out of the major streaming platforms and has its own space for music videos as well. Like Tidal and Apple Music, access to Spotify artist accounts and uploading music videos must go through a music video distributor.
Spotify also has a feature called Canvas in addition to full music videos. This feature loops a 3-8 second music video segment while songs play. Some music distributors such as Distrokid allow you to build a Canvas without having footage. Distrokid is legit going to democratize indie music distribution.
It’s certainly a good idea to decide what marketplaces to engage with. Some artists may not want to be on Spotify out of principle and may opt for exclusively Apple Music and Tidal. But when it comes to getting your music and videos seen, it’s always best to hit every angle possible. And that means getting published on all major streaming services.
The best way to do this is by using a music video distributor that allows you to upload your video once and have it distributed to the platforms in question. Not only does this give an artist access to verified accounts, but it saves a lot of time uploading large video files one by one to different video streaming platforms. When in doubt, get yourself on all the streaming marketplaces possible.
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