Looking to promote your music on YouTube? I get it. I mean, there are more than 2 billion active users on the platform each month and about half of those folks go there specifically to listen to music.
Here are the top seven YouTube promotion services worth taking a look at:
I’m going to run through the list above, and then I’ll work through a little bit of the strategy behind pursuing YouTube promotion in the first place. (Basically, if you don’t know what you want from promo, you probably shouldn’t invest in it. And if you do invest in promo, you should do it with a focus on building a community, not just increasing vanity metrics. More on that below.)
All right – let’s get into it.
If you’ve followed Two Story Melody at all (or if, for some reason, you’ve already scrolled down to the bottom of this post) this one might not surprise you. Yes, Omari’s good at this stuff, and yes, I’m an affiliate with him.
My favorite thing about Omari is his honesty. He’s not going to promote a song if he doesn’t think it’ll work; he’s not trying to upsell you into paying a ton for promo you don’t need. And he doesn’t do bots. Check out this customer testimonial from his site:
“If Omari doesn’t think a song will do well with any of his marketing packages, he will tell you so, and he doesn’t build up unrealistic expectations.”
I’ve found that to be true, too. Omari does channel and playlist placements and paid ad campaigns. Whatever your goals are on YouTube, he’s definitely a good option to help you make them happen, and with an entry price of $77, he’s pretty affordable even if your budget is tight.
Honestly, Promolta’s kind of a weird one. While Omari is an actual person (and team) that promotes music on a variety of platforms (including Instagram and social media sites), Promolta is more of a platform, and it’s specifically focused on YouTube videos. Also, it kind of sounds like a Pokémon.
Anyway, with Promolta, instead of getting consulting on your music and promo strategy, you’re basically paying to have your video pushed to an audience. When you use Promolta, you don’t have a ton of control over where your video will show up and how it’ll get promoted. You just enter your video URL and let them take it away. From what I’ve seen, though, while you don’t get control, you will get views.
I think this review of the service (from Pro Musician Hub) is particularly helpful. If you’re just skimming this list and want to know if Promolta’s worth your time, here’s their main takeaway:
Was [the number of views] as high as I expected it to be? No. But that’s probably because I had really high expectations going in. Would I have gotten the same number of views within the same time period on my own? I doubt it.
Basically, Promolta will give your video a bump in views for relatively affordable cost. It’s not a great way to boost subscribers, and it’s not necessarily a great lever to pull if you have specific placements or strategies in mind. But it will give you some social credit.
Also, it’s super cheap. Pricing starts at $10 for 500 views and goes up from there. Your call.
I first heard about Fiverr in college, and I immediately used it to send a weird “happy birthday” video (sung by a guy wearing a beaver hat) to a friend. Don’t worry, there’s more to the platform than that. But if you are looking to send weird birthday wishes to people, it’s definitely a good option.
Basically, Fiverr is a huge freelancer platform where you can find just about any kind of service – including a ton of music promotion services – at very affordable price points ($5, obviously) .
I’ve got Fiverr listed in the third spot here, but, really, it could go anywhere, because the quality of service will vary greatly depending on the provider you work with. You might get great results. You might get bot plays. It all depends on who you work with.
Two notes of advice:
First, if you’re going to use Fiverr, you absolutely have to know what your goals are. There are 309 results for YouTube music promo, and the offerings from each seller are wildly different. Some people will place your music in video playlists. Some will run Facebook ads to your videos. Some will work to get your video placed at blogs. This kind of goes without saying, but still – don’t pay someone unless you actually want what they’re offering.
Second, be very careful to vet the sellers. I wouldn’t work with anyone who has less than five stars and 100 reviews. But, even if they’ve got that, read through their reviews to confirm they aren’t fake. Then, as much as you can, communicate with the seller and ask them about their processes and past results.
Don’t just send money (and your video) into the void.
Juss Russ is an interesting option, especially if you’re in the hip-hop / R&B world. They offer “Legit YouTube Promotion”, as they proclaim on their sales page, and they also run a few legit music blogs where they offer to promote your music (which steers dangerously close to payola, but is also proof they have an audience). Because they have their own network built up, they’ve got a few more levers at their disposal than some of the other companies on this list; they’ll do ads, media and blog placements, and they’ll probably use their own platforms to run your campaign. They’re also a bit more straightforward about the results they promise, noting that your song probably won’t do well if it’s bad. Fair point (and it’s a point you won’t see the real scammy services make, because they want you to pay them no matter what).
Services start at $49.99, which isn’t bad.
However, like many of the companies on this list, Juss Russ has a few negative reviews claiming that they haven’t delivered their services. My experience suggests these are outliers (and if you dig through them you’ll find that there are definitely real positive reviews, too), but it’s worth noting.
Planetary Group boasts an incredibly impressive client roster (ever heard of the Beastie Boys? Jeff Buckley? The Snakes on a Plane soundtrack?!?).
This signals 1) that they are legit and 2) that they are expensive. In fact, they’re the only service on this list that doesn’t explicitly list their pricing. Here’s what that means: They’re boutique and consultative. Yes, they offer YouTube music promotion, but they don’t offer it in a packaged way, meaning you can’t just pay for 1,000 views on a video. (This is probably a good thing in terms of overall service quality.)
If you want a custom campaign, this is a solid option to look at – if you have a decent budget.
Oh, and they’re based in LA, which is generally helpful for music-industry-related things.
SongLifty offers promo for Spotify, Instagram, Facebook, and, yes, YouTube. Like Promolta, they’re super cheap; a video views campaign starts at just $7, and a subscriber-focused campaign starts at $10.
Based on what I can tell, the views they get appear to be legit; they’ve got a few reviews on Facebook and TrustPilot that suggest most artists have positive experiences with them. Here’s one as an example:
I have been using Songlifty.com for over a year Now – for Spotify & Youtube. They always deliver as most companies do, but their customer service in replying queries is spot on. Website is also very easy to use & good prices. Definitely happy with the service & delivery.
It’s possible that these reviews are fake, but, notably, there are no negative reviews mixed in – so I think it’s more likely that this company is fairly consistent.
So, why are they sixth on the list? One big reason: They don’t have a US service offering, which means your views are almost certainly coming from cheap (in terms of ad cost) places. If you’re an international artist, this may be fine. If you’re US-based, though, you probably want to stick with a YouTube promotion campaign focused where you actually play.
You might not believe this, but Promosoundgroup is a group of people who promote sounds.
Sorry. I just think the names for these things are pretty great.
Anyway, this is another YouTube promotion service that’s worth checking out if you’re on a budget and aren’t super concerned with getting US-based views. Promosoundgroup is run from the Ukraine, and they’ve actually got a Fiverr offering you can check out in addition to their main site.
I had them neck-and-neck with SongLifty, but after digging a bit I put them at 7th because they have more negative reviews (although it’s worth noting they’ve got way more reviews overall) and one big red flag: They’ve been noted to run click farm campaigns on Facebook, as detailed in this thoroughly enjoyable post from MEOKO (who paid for 1,000 Facebook likes and dug into some pretty ridiculous profiles).
“So why include them at all?” you might ask. Fair question. Well, in honesty, for two reasons: 1) They’ve obviously done this a lot and some people have been satisfied with their results, and 2) it’s harder to tell if YouTube views are fake or not (since you can’t dig into a profile). All in all, I’d say probably choose a company higher up on this list if you’re looking for definitely-legit promo service – but if you want to run an experiment that only costs like $10, Promosoundgroup might be worth a shot.
Bonus: A Service to Avoid – Music Promotion Corp
Last (and actually least), I wanted to give you a heads up on a YouTube promo service you should almost definitely not work with: Music Promotion Corp.
Music Promotion Corp has basically a million complaints registered with the Better Business Bureau. They have 1.9 stars on TrustPilot. Their positive reviews look fake. Their negative reviews accuse them of everything from overcharging to actually not delivering anything at all (which is even worse, in my opinion, than if they were just delivering bot views).
Also, they have a classic evil business title tacked on at the end of their name – Corp. We all know you should stay away from companies that include corp in the public version of their names, like Oscorp and LexCorp. Music Promotion Corp is no different.
Avoid this one.
YouTube Music Promotion Strategy
Okay, you’ve hypothetically ready through the seven services above and are mulling your options (or you’ve just scrolled down here right off the bat to hear my wise words). Either way, I’m glad you’ve made it this far. Here’s what you need to know before you shell out cash for this.
You need to have a goal with YouTube promotion.
YouTube music promotion is a really general term. As I mentioned at the start of this article, it could mean anything from placing your video in a YouTube playlist, to sending your video out to an email list, to running paid ads to your video, to placing your video on blogs, to standing in a chicken suit on a street corner holding a sign about your video. You get the idea.
So, before you pay for anything, define what you want to get from the promotion. Is this about getting views? Do you want subscribers to your channel? Are you trying to drive email signups to your own list?
Your goal will define what kind of promotion you’re willing to pay for.
That goal needs to be part of a long-term plan.
In addition to defining the short-term goal, you need to go a level deeper – why do you have a certain goal? For instance, if you want to get 1,000 views on your video – why? If you want subscribers – why?
Don’t set a target if you don’t know how you’ll use the results to build your music career. Views are a vanity metric. Yeah, they can be helpful, but only if you have a plan to put them to use. They mean nothing on their own, and it’s not like they’re going to lead to much revenue.
If you’re going to invest in YouTube music promotion, you need both an immediate goal and an idea of how that goal benefits your big-picture, long-term plan.
Your long-term plan needs to focus on building community, not on driving view counts.
Okay, here’s where I get on my soapbox (just a little bit). If you’ve tracked with the two points above, this third point is kind of the obvious conclusion – your long-term plan should be to build a community around your music. Short-term metrics (like video views, etc.) can support this goal, but unless you’ve defined your community and are moving toward making it reality, you should avoid spending money to promote your music on YouTube.
At a tactical level, I’d recommend only paying for two things: YouTube promo that gets you more subscribers, or YouTube promo that’s meant to build your email list (which takes more planning on your end.) In general, if the results of your campaign don’t give you a way to follow up with the people who hear your music, you should probably readjust. It’s important that your marketing can build on itself – when you get more subscribers, for example, you can engage them next time you release a video. When you build an email list, you can develop long-term relationships. You get the idea.
If you’re interested in learning more about this – and, importantly, about what a community is and why people become fans – you’re in luck. I wrote a book called How to Promote Indie Music that walks through this stuff and gives you a roadmap to follow to promote your music in a way that doesn’t suck. You can check it out here (and download the first chapter for free).
(If you want to cut to the chase and get the whole book, just click here.)
Okay. With all of that said, here’s my take on one final question…
Should you spend money on YouTube music promotion?
As you can probably guess, my answer is, “It depends.” But, as you might not guess, my second answer is, “Probably not.”
Here’s the rationale: If you haven’t worked on promotion on your own, you should probably do that before you pay for YouTube promo. I’d recommend reaching out to YouTube channel owners and blogs, and potentially trying a small Facebook / Instagram ad campaign (although be careful to control your budget). When you’ve tested a few tactics yourself, you’ll have a better idea of what you need help with.
If you’ve already tried promoting your own video and know where you need help – and you have a goal for hitting specific metrics that support your long-term plan – then YouTube promotion can definitely be worth it.
Be smart. And good luck.
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