How Do You Get On The Radio?

Radio airplay, especially in these modern times of playlists and streaming, can seem like the final last step of the mystery that most musicians never seem to crack. Come along with us while we try to break the puzzle down, piece by piece.

First off, we love the idea of taking matters into your own hands, as we often discuss all things DIY within the articles of PitStop Press. In this case, this would mean that you are taking on a form of the publicity team. Simplify the situation and start from the roots. The first step would be in researching your local radio stations. 

While you begin to learn your local music scene, we suggest that you casually follow your favorite DJs on social media. No need to message them, let the potential connection happen organically. Perhaps they'll post a cool event or the time will come when they are looking for a new song for their rotation - and then it's your time to shine. Don't force it! RADIOshutterstock_510353146.jpg

The next step would be to take the same breakdown of the local radio scene and expand to the next level and beyond. Take into consideration of online radio stations and submit to them. This can't hurt you at all, no harm done, as long as you are providing thoughtful, intentional submissions, as we can't forget that an impression is sometimes a lasting one. The person receiving the submissions may remember you next time and may immediately brush you off if you didn't give your very best before.

In previous articles, we've discussed the art of payola. As a reminder, it is practice of bribing for promotion in exchange. Payola these days still very much exists, just in different formats.Rock My World states "Over the last few years, we’ve seen Pepsi launch and re-launch “The Sound Drop” in conjunction with heavyweights MTV, Shazam, and iHeartMedia. This particular platform has proven successful, pushing along the careers of artists already on major labels and have major rotation on iHeartRadio. Dr. Pepper’s “One of a Kind Sound” is based around artist promo spots that look and sound like pre-release album videos, in fact, all of the “One of a Kind Sound” artists performed at dozens of live shows across the country giving multiple shout outs to Dr. Pepper for supporting their music. And let’s face it, Warner Music and “Universal Music Group’s partnership with iHeartRadio also screams monopoly. Add the fact that these same partnerships put on huge festivals that showcase their “chosen” acts, payola looks alive and well but with a different skin. Oh, and as for those festivals, they took in $1.5 billion in sponsorship money in 2017 alone."

Most importantly, make sure to spend most of your time working on the song itself and all of the elements that it's made up of. Ultimately, if it's born from a place of true emotion, from which others can relate to- the song will sell itself and will eventually get within the rotation of the right people.