How To Get Your Music Played On The Radio

    In today's era of immediate music access and prioritized playlisting, despite the dominance of streaming and on-demand songs, having your music broadcasted on radio remains one of the most impactful methods to reach a wide audience.

    Securing airplay for your tracks can significantly influence your career and is crucial to a successful music release strategy. Approaching radio stations strategically is essential to maximize your chances of getting on the airwaves. Securing airplay can be challenging, so patience is key. Ensure your tracks are polished and be prepared for the possibility of not achieving immediate results.



    Know who to approach

    When reaching out to radio stations, it's important to identify the appropriate contacts.

    For larger stations, locate the contact information for the individual responsible for selecting music, whether it's a DJ, producer, program director, or music director. Smaller stations may have fewer staff members, so a general contact email might suffice.

    Check the station's website or social media for the contact details you need, or simply call and ask for the producer's information (they might provide it, so it's worth trying!).

    Be aware that some stations only accept submissions from specific sources or in a particular format, so research their requirements before submitting anything.



    Understand the process for submitting your music

    Have you identified the decision-makers at the stations you're targeting but can't find clear submission instructions?


    The most common way to approach radio stations, press publications, and blogs is by creating an electronic press kit, writing a music press release, or sending a one-sheet that includes links to 1-3 of your best tracks. Your email or press pack should stand out and capture attention. Clearly name your tracks and avoid sending mp3 files; instead, include links to your songs.

    Although some people still prefer sending physical copies of their music to radio stations, this practice is becoming increasingly rare. DJs and stations typically receive most submissions and demos in digital format.



    Target the right stations

    Don't expect immediate airplay on major national stations. Radio airplay is highly competitive, with hundreds or even thousands of artists in the same situation as you.

    But it's ok to start small. There are plenty of independent, student and internet radio stations accepting submissions from up and coming bands and artists.


    Here are some of our top picks:

    - Hitz FM (GH)

    - Yfm (GH)

    - Adom FM (GH)

    - Joy FM (GH)

    - Cool FM (NG)

    - Beat FM (NG)

    - Soundcity Radio Network (NG)

    - iHeart Radio (US)


    These smaller stations receive fewer submissions, giving you a better chance of getting airplay early in your career.

    Reaching out to genre-specific stations is also a smart strategy. If you're an up-and-coming rapper, send your track to a hip-hop broadcaster. If you play thrash metal, contact stations that frequently feature your music style.



    Take your online presence into account

    Establishing a robust social media presence and enhancing online visibility for your music can significantly influence your chances of securing radio play opportunities.

    In many cases, A&Rs may overlook songs from artists who are not active on major social media platforms or have minimal followings. This criterion, though seemingly harsh, often holds merit.


    With so much competition for radio play, there must be some criteria for deciding who gets airtime. If a DJ likes two songs equally but can only choose one, they'll likely pick the artist who has invested time and effort into building an online following over one who has neglected social media.

    Moreover, social media is essential to any music promotion strategy. Demonstrate to radio hosts and DJs that you're committed to getting your music heard, both on and off the radio.

    Discover the best music social media marketing strategies to enhance your online presence!



    Create a buzz

    Ultimately, the most effective (though challenging) way to secure radio airplay is to organically generate hype around your music, build a loyal fan base, and compel radio stations to take notice.

    There’s no surefire formula for creating buzz around your band. Get out there, play live frequently, connect with your fans and the music industry, release your music on Spotify and other platforms, and most importantly, make great music!


    Employ a radio plugger

    If you create great music but are having trouble getting the radio airplay you deserve, it might be time to hire a radio plugger.


    Getting your songs on the radio isn't easy. Ensure you're targeting stations appropriate for your music and career stage.

    Be realistic, persistent, and focus on creating music that will capture the attention of influencers and radio stations. Good luck!


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