Skips, Shazams and Success: How the Right Placement Can Get You Signed

When we look for music we have certain subconscious expectations. Often they’re based on artists we already like or a certain vibe we’re after. But with these expectations of familiarity and tone, music fans dismiss a whole load of music. In fact, more than 35% of songs streamed on Spotify are skipped within the first 30 seconds. And even if they make it past those 30 seconds, only 48.6% will be streamed in their entirety. This means that with all the songs on your chosen streaming platform, you hear more, but enjoy less.


Instead, the best way to discover new music is actually the easiest; by letting it come to you. Whether it’s a friend’s social media, a movie trailer or in stores with playlists curated to you as the shopper, you hear music that you can’t skip all the time, music you wouldn’t want to, music that sets the mood, shapes your day and really connects with you. This is where apps like Shazam come in. That chance you give a song heard in the right place might just be enough, not only for you to create the best new playlist, discover your new favourite artist or get tickets for a gig, but also support them on their journey through the music industry.


Over 20 million songs are Shazamed every day, so many that labels are building Shazam departments specifically to find the most exciting acts about. With all the data, they know in advance if songs are going to be hits before they’re hits and this makes labels sit up and take notice. One of the best examples is how when Rachel Platten’s ‘Fight Song’ was played on one radio station, the amount of Shazams led to being signed within 72 hours. So the more exposure a song gets, the more chance there is of labels signing that act. This might seem like a perfect musical democracy in action, but to make it work, you need exposure.


To get on these playlists, adverts, films and TV programmes, a music supervisor or curator will handpick the tracks based on company’s briefs. But getting these guys to hear you is another difficult hurdle. If only someone would make that easier