How to build and promote your own Spotify playlists

Hey friends!

Today we’re going to talk about how to build and promote your own Spotify playlists.

Over at Forbid Media we’ve worked with labels growing their playlists with Facebook ads. But i’ve also done this for my own playlists and for clients on consultation calls.

I’m going to talk about why you’d want to grow Spotify playlists, how you should build your own Spotify playlists, and how you promote playlists. But first, a message from today’s sponsor:

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Why Build Playlists?

The reason a record label would want a Spotify playlist is different than why an artist would. Labels often want an easy way to promote their entire catalog and sometimes the playlist network a label has can be a reason an artist works with them.

Depending on the style of music, playlists sometimes aren’t as valuable for artists. For instrumental / chill music playlists are sometimes the primary traffic source for their music. For ‘regular’ music it sometimes is just a way for the artist to share their favorites with their audience.

Spotify playlists can actually rank organically too, meaning they’ll get organic search traffic just like a blog post might on Google. They can be promoted on social media or they can be promoted with ads.

Building Spotify Playlists

This might seem silly, but if you want your playlists to rank organically then you need to put some care into how you build your playlists.

The most important aspect is the theme of the playlist, which feeds into the title and artwork for the playlist. You want to make the theme specific, like ‘Cyberpunk Synthwave’, ‘songs to walk your dog to’, ‘love making metal’ etc…

The title and topic ideally shouldn’t be too broad because it’ll be harder to rank for that idea. However it shouldn’t be too specific or nobody will be searching for that idea.

The artwork should fit the theme of the playlist and be attractive to the type of person that would be searching for that playlist.

If you want your playlists to rank organically it’s often a good to idea to have a lot of popular music on the playlist, make the popularity index of the playlist over 50. This means most of the music likely can’t be your music.

Actually here’s a quick guide to optimizing playlists for organic search:

  • Great theme / title / artwork

  • Put in a description

  • Popularity index over 50%

  • First few songs popular so listeners are more likely to click play

  • Often 100-200 songs

  • Curate the playlist well so listeners stay for a while

Label playlists often won’t use music they don’t own, because the whole point is to promote their catalog. Artists making playlists just for their fans might, because they’re sharing their favorites with their fans while blending in their own stuff.

Promoting Spotify Playlists

We’ve already covered how to optimize playlists for organic traffic. However if you have a budget promoting a playlist with Facebook / Meta ads is often very effective. Basically you want to run a conversion campaign to a landing page that drives people to the playlist.

If this is alien to you considering grabbing my course, hiring my ad agency to do it for you or checking out my free YouTube content.

If you’ve been running ads promoting individual songs already but you’ve never tried promoting a playlist, it works the same way just with a different Spotify URL and different ads. Often promoting themed playlists will be cheaper than promoting individual songs because the value proposition is higher for the person seeing the ad.

In addition to organic search and ads, you can also promote playlists on social media. Once again this looks different for artists, labels and curators.

Curators might build a social media brand online where they share lists of music in TIkTok videos, and make playlists for all their video content. I’ve seen dozens of these accounts.

Artists and labels will make content for their audience giving them a compelling reason to go check out the playlist. One way to do this is to make a post asking your audience to share their favorite music artists. Then, make a playlist mixing all of your fan’s favorites with your music and make another post sharing it with them.

New Content

Recently I hosted a music marketing summit with over 10 hours of content from over 15 experts in the music industry, here’s some highlights:

Let's talk about how you can get your first 1,000 monthly listeners on Spotify for free!

Did you know you can listen to my music industry interviews on podcast platforms? Click here to listen to the Modern Music Marketing podcast.


Here are some music industry news highlights from the past week.

  • UMG pulled their catalog from TikTok, Downtown Music and others support

  • YouTube Music hits 100M paid subscribers

  • 78% of small-to-midsize businesses in the US misuse personal streaming accounts to play music in their stores

  • TuneCore places Spotify Discovery Mode behind their accelerator program, charging an additional 20% to use it

  • Apple Vision Pro launches with a virtual Alicia Keys performance, and it’s incredible

Whenever you’re ready, there are 4 ways I can help you:

  1. My courses. Spotify Growth Machine teaches you how to use Facebook ads to promote your music on Spotify. YouTube Growth Machine teaches you how to grow a YouTube channel organically and how to use YouTube ads. Fan Growth Machine teaches you how to build a website, online store and grow your email list.

  2. My ad agency. Forbid Media specializes in running Facebook conversion ads to promote your music on Spotify.

  3. Website / Store / Funnels. MusicFunnels is the best all-in-one platform for music artists to make a website, online store, sales funnels and build their mailing list.

  4. 1-on-1 consulting. You can book 1-hour calls with myself or Alex Bochel here.

My Links:

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If you’d rather just purchase the e-book, or physical book or audiobook you can do so here.

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