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Why Pre-Saving Music Doesn't Help Musicians

Pre-saving a song before it releases seems like a great way to support musicians. But are these clicks really driving the meaningful engagement artists crave?

10 months ago

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Pre-saving a song before it releases seems like a great way to support musicians. It's a simple click that promises streaming numbers and visibility on release day. But are these clicks really driving the meaningful engagement artists crave? Or are they just another hollow metric? Here are 10 reasons why pre-saving doesn't necessarily support musicians in the ways they need.

THE ILLUSION OF ENGAGEMENT

Pre-saving a song gives the impression of fan engagement, but it's often superficial. The act requires minimal effort and commitment from the listener, meaning it's no guarantee they'll actually listen to the song or engage with the artist in a meaningful way once it releases. Pre-saves can inflate an artist's sense of their own popularity without providing real fan loyalty😞.

THE DISENGAGEMENT CLIFF

Once a song is released, the pre-save hype often fizzles out, leading to a sharp drop in engagement. This 'cliff' can be demoralizing for artists who are riding high on pre-release excitement, only to see their streaming numbers plummet after the first few days. This rollercoaster effect isn't conducive to building a sustainable fanbase.

THE TIME-CONSUMING PROMOTION

Promoting pre-saves can be time-consuming and distracting for an artist. It diverts energy away from creating music and towards marketing tactics. This focus on pre-release promotion may also overemphasize the importance of a song's initial impact, rather than fostering long-term listener engagement.

Or maybe don't.

THE DATA DISCONNECT

While pre-saves might give an indication of a song's potential popularity, they don't provide much valuable data for the artist. They don't reveal who the listeners are or how they engage with the song once it's released. Without this data, artists can't tailor their approach to their audience or gain insights into their fans' behavior🕵️‍♀️.

THE PLATFORM PRIORITY

Pre-saves primarily benefit the streaming platforms, not the artists. They generate user activity and help to populate playlists, increasing the platform's engagement. However, they do little to help artists establish a direct relationship with their listeners or gain meaningful feedback on their work.

THE HYPE HANGOVER

The hype surrounding pre-saves can create unrealistic expectations for an artist. They may feel pressure to deliver a hit, leading to creative stress and burnout. Instead of focusing on creating music that they love, artists can become overly fixated on numbers📊.

THE FAN FATIGUE

For listeners, the constant barrage of pre-save requests can lead to fatigue. This may result in fewer pre-saves over time, as fans become more selective about which tracks they commit to. This could reduce the effectiveness of pre-saving as a promotional tool.

THE ARTIFICIAL BUMP

Pre-saves can artificially inflate a song's streaming numbers, leading to a distorted representation of its popularity. This can mislead artists and their teams about the song's success, leading to misguided decision-making about future releases and promotional strategies.

THE UNFAIR ADVANTAGE

Major labels and established artists often have the resources to push pre-saves more aggressively than independent artists. This can create an uneven playing field, where the rich get richer and emerging artists struggle to compete.

THE FOCUS ON QUANTITY OVER QUALITY

Pre-saves encourage a focus on quantity over quality, prioritizing the number of clicks over the depth of listener engagement. This can detract from the real joy and purpose of making music: connecting with listeners on a deep, emotional level🎵.

When it comes to supporting musicians, there's no substitute for genuine engagement. Listen to their music, share it with your friends, attend their shows, and let them know what their work means to you. That's the kind of support that really makes a difference.

If you're curious, come join our Discord, reach out to us on Twitter, and discover great independent artists on dns.xyz!

Shokunin

Published 10 months ago