“How come that band are getting more airplay than us”?
If I made a pound every time I was asked this, I’d have retired by now!
Airplay envy. I think it’s a thing;-)
So, why is that musician/band getting more airplay than you?
It could be any number of reasons, so I’ll list some off the top of my head….
1) They’re using a music publicist and spending hundreds and hundreds of pounds on getting that radio airplay
2) They’ve been around longer than you and are more established
3) They’re better than you
4) They’ve got a record deal
5) They’ve got a manager
6) They’ve got a booking agent
7) They’ve played major festivals
8) They’re getting massive support from their local BBC Introducing show and the presenter is putting them forward for national BBC airplay
9) They’re a completely different sounding band than you and are more suitable for certain radio shows – that you’re perhaps not suited to.
10) They’ve been working with a top producer and they blow your production out of the water!
11) They have a relationship/history with that radio presenter or that radio station
12) They’ve got a shit-tonne of followers on social media
13) They’re releasing an album
14) They’ve got someone investing money into their band/project
15) They’re more of a “finished article” than you (really professional photos and artwork, received press and airplay in the past, had previous tours etc)
16) They’re a few rungs further up the music industry ladder than you
17) Their sound is more contemporary than yours
18) Their song is catchier than yours
19) They have a better “story” than you.
20) They have created a buzz on social media – people are talking about them.
I could go on, but you get the idea.
Try not to compare yourself/selves to others as generally, there’s a reason (or 20!) that a particular band or musician is achieving more than you and it’s going to take you time to build up to where they are.
Another point to bring up:
Pluggin Baby has a great relationship with Johnny Doom from Kerrang! Radio and our clients are often “spot-played” on his show. I’m often asked by the bands that get supported by Johnny “can we get played on all the shows on Kerrang! Radio now?” and my answer is always “Not unless you get on the Kerrang! Radio playlist”. And the playlist is made up of mostly major label artists and bands, so if you’re just starting out, I wouldn’t hold your breath trying to get added to playlists on big stations. These slots are set aside for the big guns. The established bands and artists. For example, this week, the Kerrang! Radio playlist contains new tracks from AC/DC, You Me At Six, Foo Fighters, Biffy Clyro, Corey Taylor, Royal Blood, A Day To Remember and Weezer. Are you in the same league as those bands?
No. I thought not;-) And did you know that each week only 2 or 3 new songs are added to the Kerrang! Radio playlist? They’re simply not going to add you to their A list or B list, if you’re an unknown band, but as you progress with your music, it’s certainly something to aspire to. You may also be lucky enough to be added to the Evening Show playlist on Kerrang! Radio. Last year I had 2 of my clients added to this playlist and it meant about 3 plays a day from 7pm to 6am every day of the week, for around 5 weeks. Amazing! These bands were independent artists, so this is the playlist to aim for if you have a sound that’s suitable to Kerrang! Radio. Why not take a listen to the station to see if you think you are?
So, the moral of this blog? Don’t try and run before you can walk. Don’t expect the world from your release without putting in some serious work. Don’t expect to be playlisted on national brands like Kerrang! Radio and appreciate the airplay you have received – because no one HAS to play you. As an independent artist, you are up against hundreds of other releases each week. Everyone’s trying to get played on the same radio shows. By hiring a music publicist like Pluggin Baby, you will have many doors opened to you, and you will achieve radio airplay, but there are no guarantees with the larger radio stations. No PR company in the land can promise that – and if they do, they’re lying, and I’d seriously recommend you run away very quickly!
In the meantime, if you’ve been working with a radio PR company or if you’ve been sending out music to radio stations yourself and you want to monitor your airplay, then why not sign up for a free trial with WARM, (Worldwide Airplay Radio Monitor) and you can use my referral code too:-)
They monitor radio stations all over the world and whilst not every radio station is monitored by them, I’ve found the service to be such an eye-opener when it comes to my own Pluggin Baby clients and we all love a good pie chart of plays to show us which countries we’re been played in as well as knowing which radio stations have played us and when.
Perfect for claiming your PRS royalties!
All you need to do is upload your MP3 for the single you’ve had airplay with, fill in the title and band name and enjoy a 4-week free trial where it can show you if your plugger’s done any work – or if you’ve managed to pick up airplay yourself.
Plus, if you have a weird obsession with Rick Astley, you can search him up and choose a song to see how many plays he gets per week! It’s fascinating to see how many people still play Never Gonna Give you up!
I’ll leave this blog here, and I hope it’s been an interesting read.
If you have a burning music industry question to ask me, then email me back and I’ll answer in a future blog for you.
Thanks for reading!