The hardest thing an artist can do these days is have their music played. That’s partly because the democratization of the music industry has made the market overwhelmingly saturated. However, there are still ways to get yourself out there in an increasingly competitive business. One means is to find music blogs to submit to.
Are blog submissions even worth it?
You’re probably wondering why we’ve taken the time to write an article on this topic if there’s any hesitation about it being a viable way to market music in 2021. We can qualify that statement by saying yes, blog submissions are still a means of having your music heard—but, it’s a crapshoot. You’re banking on the chance that someone else will promote your music, while there are plenty of ways to promote it yourself.
Not only that, but music blogs to submit to just don’t have the same pull they once did. Social media and streaming platforms dominate the music discovery landscape today; algorithms suggest new music to listeners; and paid promotion on Instagram and Facebook is one of the top ways to advertise.
It isn’t all ‘bah humbug’ surrounding independent music blogs, though. If you can get in, chances are there’s a loyal readership that will give your music a shot. You’re being exposed to an established audience you wouldn’t otherwise have direct access to. You should definitely take some time to submit to blogs, but don’t rely on that as your only marketing strategy. Also, just be aware that even the smallest indie publications still get swarmed with submissions, and don’t take rejection—silent or otherwise—as any indication of the value of your art.
- SEE ALSO: Digital Music Distribution in 2021
Music Blog Submission Tips
It’s a good idea to approach blog submissions sorta like you’re applying for a job. There should be a good balance of professionalism and personality so you don’t get lost in a stack of résumés. Here are a few general pointers to keep in mind:
- Submit to the right blog(s). That means doing your research and making sure they publish your genre.
- If you can, address a specific person in your pitch. That makes it personal and shows you’re not just spamming mass submissions. Also, keep your pitch as short as you can.
- Blogs want to debut new or unreleased songs. Don’t try to submit an EP you recorded 3 years ago.
- Provide direct links to your music—not attached MP3 or WAV files. Don’t send links that require someone to download an app or create an account. Soundcloud works well.
- If you have an EPK, provide that with your submission too.
Top 10 Music Blogs to Submit to
Here’s a short top-10 list of music blogs to submit to. We’ve done our best to curate them in almost every genre, so regardless of the style of music you play, you will be eligible for at least one (if not several) of them.
Earmilk has been around for over 10 years. They take submissions from all genres, but the publication focuses on indie, electronic, hip hop, and pop music.
2. A&R Factory
The UK-based A&R Factory is a platform for industry pros to discover new talent. The readership consists primarily of labels, management, publishers, and others who use the site as a place to find and sign artists. All genres are welcome.
London-based Cougar Microbes debuts British and international music across various genres. Their team has contributors from all over the world.
Indie Shuffle was founded by the CEO of SubmitHub, which is an aggregator of submissions. For a fee, artists can pay SubmitHub to send their music to blogs, influencers, and other industry professionals, for them—certain blogs take submissions exclusively through the service. The ethics of payola aside, it’s part of the world we live in.
Indie Shuffle promotes every genre, centering on indie rock, hip hop, and electronic music.
Pigeons & Planes is part of the Complex network. It focuses on pop, hip hop, and electronic, though they do feature artists in other genres occasionally.
HNHH is a go-to resource for fans of hip hop and rap to discover new music. Submissions are always open, but very competitive. Every week, the team picks two new songs to feature on the website on Saturday and Sunday.
7. Stoney Roads
Stoney Roads is Australia’s top source of EDM news and music discovery. They accept submissions in house, techno, electro, and more.
Louder Than War is a Manchester-based punk, rock, garage, and alternative blog. Founded in 2010, LTW is open-minded and punk rock through and through.
9. Gear Gods
As the name suggests, the Gear Gods blog focuses mostly on new music equipment, especially as it is relevant to hard rock/metal/progressive guitarists. That said, the blog also frequently features up-and-coming metal bands who submit music videos for consideration.
10. The FADER
The FADER is probably the biggest of the music blogs listed here, and in that way they’re going to be harder to submit to. Their reach is huge, though, so it’s a low-risk/high reward type of submission with them. The FADER features music across many genres.